The Prosthetics Society


Photo by    Elena Koycheva    on    Unsplash

The number of amputees in Syria is over 25 000 since 2011; one in 250 Cambodians has been dismembered by a mine; 27 000 citizens in Sierra Leone and 100 000 in Afghanistan have had limbs amputated.

The Prosthetics Society is a dystopian meditation on a world where war amputees are so prevalent that prosthetics become designer accessories. A series of prosthetic limbs are hand painted with the traditional arts of the world's most war-torn countries.

Intricate Islamic geometries adorn a prosthetic leg, Cambodian textiles wrap around a prosthetic foot, and the patterns of gara cloth from Sierra Leone embellish a prosthetic hand. By combining the best and worst of humanity, the installation invites viewers to contemplate both the sublime beauty of these societies and the ghastly terror of life in war zones.

The Prosthetics Society is a project in progress.




Through the activation of public spaces around the world, Taiwanese-American artist Candy Chang provokes playful and profound visions for how we can connect, reflect, and cultivate the health of our communities. For over a decade she has created participatory experiments in the public realm that examine the thresholds between isolation and community, the psychology of civic engagement, and how shared places can cultivate introspection, intimacy, and kinship. Candy’s projects have examined issues from criminal justice and the future of vacant buildings to personal aspirations and anxieties. Her participatory public art project Before I Die has been created in over 1,000 cities and over 70 countries, including Iraq, China, Haiti, Kazakhstan, and South Africa.

Candy challenges the conventional perception of public space and the role it can play in the well-being of the community and the individual. She believes public art can play a profound role in helping us make sense of the beauty and tragedy of life with the people around us. She is a TED Senior Fellow.