Sep 17, 2017 | By Julia

Self-described “bionic pop artist” Viktoria Modesta is taking the art world by storm. The Latvian model, musician, and artist has been making quite the name for herself since 2007, when she her left leg was amputated below the knee. Rather than shy away from the limelight, however, Modesta has done anything but, and instead refocused her art around her groundbreaking collection of custom, often 3D printed, prosthetics.

The high-profile collaborations with renowned museums, designers, and art institutions have been almost too numerous to count. About three years ago, Modesta and BBC’s Channel 4 teamed up for “Prototype,” the pioneering music video that saw the Latvian performance artist dance on a pointed wooden leg. First airing during the finale of UK’s popular X Factor show, Modesta’s video premiered to an estimated 10 million viewers. Since then, the “bionic pop artist” has continued to dominate the media with exhibitions at the San Francisco Museum of Craft and Design and Vienna’s MAK Museum, in addition to her solo show ‘Robotic Couture’ at acclaimed Dutch exhibition hall Enschede.

Now, Modesta has launched a revolutionary new project with long time collaborator Anouk Wipprecht, the Dutch designer whose work most notably criss-crosses fashion and technology. “Sonifica” is the duo’s new set of custom-made prosthetics unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. The partially 3D printed pieces (which currently include a prosthetic leg and a bodice) go beyond form and function, catapulting into the realm of musical performance. The bodice is particularly impressive, featuring two protruding tusks that effectively act as a modulator, similar to a pair of theremins. At the same time, aesthetics are far from forgotten. “The tusks create a different silhouette,” Modesta remarked. “It gives you a more animalistic skeleton, but also has almost a sexual addition to the body.”

Produced in collaboration with Miami-based architecture firm Monad Studio, Modesta and Wipprecht’s Sonica was recently exhibited at international art fair Art Basel Miami. There, Modesta stole the show with her live backing band, greeting the packed crowd with ethereal music emanating from her prosthetic tusks, and successfully intertwining music, art, fashion, technology, and performance. According to the Latvian-born star, that’s precisely the point. “You’ve got science and art mixing in such an intense way, and you don’t know where it’s going to go,” Modesta said. Considering that the groundbreaking collaboration was sponsored by 3D printing giant Autodesk, it’s safe to say that 3D printing technology will continue to play an important role in Modesta and Wipprecht’s future creations, regardless of where they go next.

Anouk Wipprecht

Images courtesy of Anouk Wipprecht



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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