Action ORLAN-corps, MesuRage d'institutions et de rues
The name of this series of performances, begun in the late 1960s, insists on the word “Rage,” that of the artist who refuses to play the role people want to impose on her. Using the ORLAN-body, a new unit of measurement, ORLAN measures the length and width of the street by leaving chalk marks on the sidewalk. In this way, she incorporates Protagoras’s statement that “man is the measure of all things.”
The acts performed during MesuRages d’institutions et de rues are provocations regarding our relationship to urban spaces and the place we occupy in them: “Are modern cities made to our measurement? Does the street belong to us bodily?” asks ORLAN. It is saying that the relationship between space and body is fundamental, that the body is an incomparable instrument of perception and familiarity, and yet it is neglected. At the same time, ORLAN, as a woman artist, indirectly evokes the tasks (laundry, sewing...) that are traditionally reserved for women in order to keep them subjugated.