September 2020 – February 2021
Developed by Robin Simpson, Julia Eilers Smith and Michèle Thériault
A Withdrawal Towards the Horizon
Wednesday, February 3, 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Free, online, In French
Limited places, RSVP: email@example.com
This lecture will address the question of resistance and collectivity outside of abelist notions of “action” or “uprisal,” focusing instead on the idea of radical withdrawal (or non-consent). This withdrawal will be considered in correspondence with artists and intellectuals such as Fred Moten, Anne Boyer, Marguerite Duras, Audra Simpson, Nils Frahm, Nathanaël, Alejandra Pizarnik, Chris Marker, Johanna Hedva and Tricia Hersey. Also of focus in the lecture and following workshop is the abolitionist potential of somatic practices and the biomimetic as conceptual creation. In turn, we will draw knowledge from our translation of living phenomena, such as tardigrades, volcanos, plants, hummingbirds and black holes, in order to locate a power of refusal that can be articulated outside of anthropocentric and colonial paradigms.
Olivia Tapiero is a writer and translator. She is the author of Les murs (Prix- Robert-Cliche 2009, Prix Senghor finalist), Espaces(2012), Phototaxie(2017) and Rien du tout (2020), and coeditor of the collection Chairs (2019). Member of the editorial committee at Moebius, she has contributed to numerous publications, among them Estuaire, Liberté and Tristesse. Her shifting work is crossed by a sense for disintegration, a contempt towards institutions and nationalism, and the exploration of non-consent to the state of the world.Close
Weaving New Legacies of Knowing
Watch the video of the lecture here
Tuesday, September 29, 2020, 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Zoom (Limited spaces, RSVP required): firstname.lastname@example.org
Facebook event hereRead more
As we enter into our current phase of the pandemic (and here I refer to both the coronavirus and the spate of racist violence against Afrisporic and Indigenous bodies), I am drawn to two quotes from James Baldwin.
The first speaks to “…the great force of history [which] comes from the fact that we carry it within us” driving our conscious and unconscious thoughts and actions. The second is a warning that challenges our present forced reality: “If a society permits one portion of its citizenry to be menaced or destroyed, then, very soon, no one in that society is safe.”
This lecture and workshop aim to bring to the fore the complexities of association and the politics of resistance (internal and external) that artists from racialized backgrounds encounter when faced with the challenge of engaging their ancestral memory by means of performance.
In these times of transformation and recovery we turn to the following questions: What are the legacies we carry and what do we leave behind? How do colonial legacies continue to impact our ability to listen to the stories that need to be told? What is our responsibility as cultural producers and what are the responsibilities of our collaborators?
The Arrivals Legacy Process (ALP) is a transformational exploration of ancestry, ceremony and root cultural practices for artists and creators of change—enacting an approach to collaborative responsibility that is geared toward particular centres of gravity rooted in the body and infused by the spirit. This lecture and workshop invite a level of engagement that contradicts the traditional role of the researcher as knowledge producer by asking you to step into a state of unknowing and to grapple with what is potentially unknowable.
There are stories, mingled in our blood, buried in bones and breath—stories waiting to be told… These stories can bring us all home.
Diane Roberts is a PhD candidate in Interdisciplinary Studies at Concordia University in Montreal, a 2019 Pierre Elliott Trudeau Scholar and a Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship award holder. She is the founder of the Arrivals Legacy Project (www.arrivalslegacy.com) and has been the lead workshop facilitator for the past 16 years. The roots of storytelling and multi-disciplinary art forms (mixing of ritual song, dance, storytelling, live art and theatre) drive her arts practice as a director dramaturg and cultural animator. Her intuitive style of facilitation draws on specifically crafted creative engagement tools that inspire artists of all disciplines and cultural backgrounds to unearth their authentic creative impulses. Her working methodology draws out and establishes a common vocabulary amongst Indigenous and diverse artists, our ways of working and our sense of ourselves as artists in a global society.
 Afrisporic is my slight adaptation of the term ‘Afrosporic’ derived from poet M. NourbeSe Philip which speaks to the scattering and seeding of new life in the African journey to and across the Americas.
 James Baldwin, “The White Man’s Guilt,” in Baldwin: Collected Essays, 1948-1985 (New York: The Library of America, 1998) 723.
James Baldwin, “Nothing Personal,” Contributions in Black Studies 6 (1983): 54-55Close
Landscape of Hope: Collective reflection. Improvisation. Transformation. Social pedagogy
with Annabelle Brault, Owen Chapman, Nik Forrest, Éva Roy and Vivek Venkatesh
Watch the video of the panel here
with Annabelle Brault, Owen Chapman, Nik Forrest, Éva Roy and Vivek Venkatesh
Resources hereRead more
How can we attune ourselves to build resilience against misinformation and in the process empower those who are marginalised the most? Recognizing the social and political stakes in media literacy, Landscape of Hope will lead a two-part session on the ways we can redirect listening towards critical forms of monitoring, analyzing, and mapping.
Landscape of Hope is an immersive musical collective that magnifies audiences’ narratives as they pertain to building resilience against racism, discrimination, prejudice and cyberbullying. Their multimedia performances and installations build upon pluralistic dialogues facilitated by workshops centering participants’ reflections on community resilience. Drawing from social media platforms, academic chatter, artist commentary, and culturally relevant social discussions, the collective aims to foster mindful and critical thinking.
During the panel attendees will have an opportunity to learn and dialogue with collective members about the ethos guiding Landscape of Hope and reflect on its roots in media literacy, pluralism and the role of arts-based pedagogies in exposing the harmful effects of systemic discrimination.
For the following workshop, participants will be asked to carefully reflect on how they sense their surroundings as they create pen-and-paper versions of maps of the sounds they are experiencing. After this breakout activity, the group will then meet back online to discuss their individual experiences and learn about how these exercises, media, and documents can form visual and sonic beds for Landscape of Hope installations and performances.
Materials needed: Blank paper and a thick or marker pen.
Annabelle Brault, MA, MTA is a resource-oriented music therapist, musician, researcher and educator. A full-time music therapy lecturer at Concordia University, she is interested in the use of music technology as a creative medium to instil social change.
Owen Chapman is a composer, DJ and researcher. His work addresses the place of sound in everyday life. He is an Associate Professor in Sound Production and Scholarship in the department of Communication Studies at Concordia University. His audio work involves app design, live performance and electronic composition and has been featured internationally in video soundtracks, media workshops, site-specific installations as well as solo and group performances.
Nik Forrest is an artist based in Tio’tia:ke/Montreal. Currently a PhD student in the Interdisciplinary Humanities program at Concordia, their research combines sound studies, gender studies and creative practice in sound performance and installation. Nik’s sound installations have been shown at Oboro and Eastern Block (Montreal), Paved Arts and New Media (Saskatoon), Latitude 54 (Edmonton) and at the Kunsthalle Mulhouse (France). Their short experimental videos have been shown widely at festivals, galleries and museums across Canada, the US and Europe.
Eva Roy is an MA candidate at Concordia University and a teaching and research assistant in the Art Education faculty. She is currently undertaking research from a pedagogical perspective on the self-taught art practice of a veteran who suffers from PTSD. She has been awarded the Glenn Cross Family Award, Fine Arts Fellowship, Merit Award as well as the Graduate Mobility Award. Being an artist and teacher, Eva’s next professional challenge is to become a respected academic researcher in her field.
Vivek Venkatesh is UNESCO co-Chair in Prevention of Radicalisation and Violent Extremism, and Professor of Inclusive Practices in Visual Arts in the Department of Art Education at the Faculty of Fine Arts at Concordia University. He is an interdisciplinary and applied learning scientist who investigates the psychological, cultural and cognitive factors impacting the design, development and inclusive adoption of digital media in educational and social contexts.Close
Against Collective Power through Brutal Aesthetics
Watch the video of the lecture here
Tuesday, December 1, 2020, 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Free, on line
Limited spaces, RSVP: email@example.com
To see the proliferation of social media videos documenting anti-Black police brutality as purely a resulting consequence of recent socio-technological developments (the internet + the smartphone + social media) would be to miss the structure upon which that imagery itself relies and the aesthetic rules to which they (the videos) subscribe. These aesthetic rules are ones generally relied upon to foster collective understanding in the modern world but they should not be thought of as neutral. In this lecture and workshop, visual culture scholar Nataleah Hunter-Young troubles notions of “collective power” that require or demand the circulation of anti-Black brutality and, instead, looks to the work of artist-theorists who refuse these rules of engagement in favour of other discursive modes, including those that reveal what she calls the “brutal aesthetic” of our social order.
During the lecture, Hunter-Young will consider the work of Anique Jordan, Torkwase Dyson, Oluseye, Brett Story, and other artists working through themes of anti-Black state violence. In the workshop, participants will have an opportunity to ask questions emerging from the lecture and together will look to the 1969 Sir George Williams Affair, as an example of collective power, and discuss what the visual language employed in Mina Shum’s Ninth Floor (2015) contributes to the history’s retelling.
Nataleah Hunter-Young is a writer, film curator, and PhD candidate in Communication and Culture at Ryerson and York Universities. She has supported festival programming for the Toronto International Film Festival, the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival, and the Durban International Film Festival in South Africa. Nataleah’s doctoral research explores the social and cultural impacts of social media videos documenting anti-Black police brutality and their representations in contemporary art.Close
Running online through the fall in parallel to the on-site exhibition Going To, Making Do, Passing Just the Same and its respective activities, Radiant Power asks three times over, in a two-part structure—lecture and workshop—how do we prepare for and generate power with a force greater than our limits and beyond those placed on collective life.
The contexts addressed in Going To…. give rise to questions of ecology, migration and human rights, life and community in the wake of extraction, and global systems of circulation. Discussion and exchange hold an important place in Brunette and Lemieux’s practice and they have invited a range of collaborators—a choreographer, philosophers, activists, and migrant workers—to contribute to both the exhibition and its accompanying publication. This polyvocal project take Brunette and Lemieux’s questions and extend through an on-line program, placing it in orbit around the interventions on-site. A question addressed in Radiant Power, arising from conversation with Brunette and Lemieux, is how do we create collective power? Power understood here as a collection of physical, organic, psychological and ethical forces at once located in individuals, composed between them, and out in the world, this all set in motion to surpass the limits placed on collective life.
Diane Roberts, dramaturge
Project Someone, members of the social pedagogy collective
Nataleah, Hunter-Young, visual culture scholar
Olivia Tapiero, writer and translator
Diane Roberts: September 22nd and 29th 2020
Project Someone: October 20th and 27th 2020
Nataleah Hunter-Young: November 24th and December 1st 2020
Olivia Tapiero: January 26 and February 3rd 2021
Keeping in mind the speculative and associative thinking possible in anticipation, this program is accompanied by a list of resources proposed by each guest. Available through the Gallery’s website, these resources span critical theory, documentary films, and artworks, offering participants an advance view of the programming ahead as well as a chance to read, watch and listen freely before select material is highlighted by each guest.
Start reading, listening and watching now