An Australian man known as “Stelarc,” who also claims to be a professor (of Curtin University in Perth, Western Australia), has a third ear growing out of his left arm. Stelarc is a performance artist who uses the third ear as part of his onstage routine, but the ear also serves an alleged purpose. Stelarc — whose real name is Stelios Arcadiou — spoke with the Aussie daytime program Today to discuss his interesting extra organ. Stelarc first conceived of the third ear in 1996, but he couldn’t make it happen for another decade. Here’s his dream come true:
“It’s partly surgically constructed and partly cell grown … a biopolymous scaffold was inserted into my arm. The skin was suctioned over it, and over a period of six months, that encourages your cells to grow into the scaffold. And it grows its own blood supply, so this ear becomes not only fixed but really a part of your body.”
Don’t worry, this story gets better. During a second surgery, doctors tested “a small microphone inserted into the ear.” Stelarc says his surgeon spoke to the ear, and the ear registered the sound. So Stelarc plans to register the magnificent ear on WiFi networks, so “if I’m in Perth, someone else is in London, New York, wherever I am, wherever they are, they’ll be able to listen into what my ear is hearing.” Then Stelarc laughs, which will make your entire being shrivel up into the nearest seashell.
Stelarc also spoke with the CNN about how he’s pretty much a robot now: “As a performance artist I am particularly interested in that idea of the post-human, that idea of the cyborg.”
In other words, Stelarc is Borg. Sounds like an excellent plan.