Tremblement de Chair (3 min, 40 seconds)
Mirha-Soleil Ross and Mark Karbusicky, 2001
In Tremblement de Chair, MSR meditates on the “beauty, perils, and powers” of transsexual women’s bodies and sexualities. Her partner Mark’s hands trace over her body, while images of tornadoes are superimposed. Feminist art’s use of natural imagery in connection with women’s bodies has a long history — just as long as feminism has also denied a connection to nature to transsexual women who are viewed as unnatural, artificial, creations of patriarchal science. Tremblement de Chair disrupts this narrative of the unnaturalness of transsexual women, presenting an alternative response from the usual Donna Harraway/Sandy Stone cyborg counter-narrative. It occurs to me while viewing it this time that her affirmation of the connection to nature and land (rather than its rejection through a cyborg metaphor) may well be influenced by her Indigenous Métis background.