This photograph is part of a larger series called the "Phantom Limb" series, made before the advent of Photoshop, where Leeson collaged objects such as cameras, binoculars, electric plugs, clocks and televisions to replace the limbs of women cut out from magazine ads and photographs. From her earliest works, often located in domestic settings, she has been interested in the gendered way that technological advances present themselves in popular media: as ventures to be conquered, but also as alien or other femme fatales. It remain an iconic image from Leeson’s long career.
Featuring a woman seductively lying on a bed with a television screen replacing her head, Seduction is at once both alluring and unnerving. “The implicit strategy of these robotic female cyborgs is that they are posed and poised to outwit their captors,” Leeson writes in “The Terror of Immortality,” a 2014 text about the Phantom Limb series. “They are complicit in the action and understand fully what is being done to them, and therefore they seek to avenge themselves by reversing, revising, and transforming the very dynamic of absorption and consumption, seduction and defiance.” Is she captured, or is the image capturing us? The image is a stark distillation of the central motif of Leeson’s career, of the terror and the brilliance of the technology we co-habitate with.
"The seduction of media causes a phenomenon in which reproductive technological parts sprout from the image of the female, creating a cyborgian reformation as parts of the real body disappear."
Romancing the Anti-body: Lust and Longing in (Cyber)space