What if we can increase our brain capacity in the future? Meet the XTRNL: the jewel which is able to extend your neocortex (the part of your brain which controls your ratio). While being presented as a status symbol, there is one downside: the adjustments within your neocortex, affect your limbic system (the part of your brain which controls your emotions). Hereby a clear dilemma is stated: what if ‘intelligence’ becomes the norm and empathic qualities loose its value? The XTRNL starts a conversation about the dystopic future we might face if transhumanistic developments cause the creation of a modified elite.

Hannah van den Elzen’s XTRNL at the exhibition Body Control: jewellery and fashion at the boundaries of the human being, Museum Arnhem (2019/20)