Belfast Telegraph

Australian artist Stelarc grows an ear on his arm that will connect to the Internet

Not content with growing an ear out of his arm, Australian artist and professor Stelarc now plans to connect his new organ to the Internet.

Curtin University professor Stelios Arcadiou, who is known for his stage name 'Stelarc', had the ear implanted in his left forearm in 2006.

The Perth-based artist now plans to make the organ more three-dimensional by lifting it off his left arm and growing an ear lobe from his own stem cells.

He will then insert a miniature microphone which is capable of connecting to the internet.

"This ear is not for me, I've got two good ears to hear with. This ear is a remote listening device for people in other places," he told Australian network ABC.

The ear will also be trackable through GPS and Stelarc said the mic can be switched on all of the time without an 'on-off switch'.

"Increasingly now, people are becoming internet portals of experience ... imagine if I could hear with the ears of someone in New York, imagine if I at the same time could see with the eyes of someone in London.

"They'll be able to follow a conversation or hear the sounds of a concert, wherever I am, wherever you are."

Miraculously, the ear only took six months for tissue and blood vessels to develop around the scaffold structure inserted by the doctors.

'People's reactions range from bemusement to bewilderment to curiosity, but you don't really expect people to understand the art component of all of this,' Stelarc said.

He added: "I guess I've always got something up my sleeve, but often my sleeve is rolled down."

Belfast Telegraph Digital