Catalan-raised, British-born avant-garde artist and cyborg activist based in New York. He is best known for being the first person in the world with an antenna implanted in his skull and for being officially recognized as a cyborg by a government. His antenna uses audible vibrations in his skull to report information to him. This includes measurements of electromagnetic radiation, phone calls, music, as well as video or images which are translated into sound. His wifi enabled antenna also allows him to receive signals and data from satellites.
Since 2004, international media has described him as the world’s first cyborg or the world’s first cyborg artist, for expressing himself artistically through a new sense created by the permanent union between cybernetics and his brain. In 2010, he co-founded the Cyborg Foundation, an international organisation that defends cyborg rights, promotes cyborgism as an art movement and supports people who want to become cyborgs. In 2015 he co-founded Cyborg Nest, a company that creates artificial senses to extend the perception of reality.
Harbisson’s antenna, which has been permanently attached to his head since 2004, is osseointegrated inside his skull and sprouts from within his occipital bone. It allows him to hear the light frequencies of the spectrum including invisible colours such as infrareds and ultra violets. Internal internet connection also allows him to receive colours from satellites and other people’s cameras, as well as receive phone calls directly into his skull. The antenna consists of 4 different implants: two antenna implants, one vibration/sound implant, and a Bluetooth implant that allows him to connect to the internet. There are currently 5 people in the world, one in each continent, allowed to send him images, sounds or videos. The first person to call his head was British American comedian Ruby Wax. The first public demonstration of a skull transmitted image was broadcast live to thousands of viewers watching Al Jazeera’s chat show The Stream. The image, a selfie sent from New York by US model Isaac Dean Weber, was received and identified by Harbisson as a face