DE LA NATURE | Critical reflection program
Friday, January 18th to Saturday, February 23rd, 2013
Opening : Thursday, January 17th, at 6 p.m.
Symposium: February 19th, from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.



The group exhibition De la nature is a collaboration between emerging curator Anne-Marie Belley and Les Territoires. The exhibit presents recent works by artist-researchers Kelly Andres, Brandon Ballengée, Claire Kenway and Alison Reiko Loader. The project is part of the Critical Reflection program of Les Territoires. A symposium on the new collaborations between artists and scientists and their interdisciplinary potential for research in art history will take place at theSociété des arts technologiques.


De la nature establishes links between the art practices of four artists who use visual arts, science and technology in their works. The final works take on the form of a make-believe futuristic invention, a curiosity cabinet and a lab installation. The works presented in De la nature transgress boundaries between pure sciences, visual arts and media arts while redefining the viewer’s perception of living organisms. Each work makes use of the artists’ interest in scientific research in order to create a new visual language. Through this process, the artists challenge assumptions on the seemingly impossible reconciliation between science and art, the past and the present, tradition and technology and finally undo binary categories of knowledge and experience. Also hybrid, they borrow from various media such as sculpture, video and audio art as well as photography. Interactive and often immersive, the works will continually evolve through the passage of time and the visitors’ reactions. This process of constant change will defy nature’s cycles and the way we conceptualize their study.



De la nature _ symposium

A public gathering on the new dynamics in transdisciplinarity


Held in conjunction with the exhibition De la nature, presented at Les Territoires, this symposium is an opportunity for the speakers to reflect on new collaborations/infiltrations between artists and scientists, as well as the transdisciplinary potential they bring to their work, research and dissemination of the arts and sciences. The works in the current exhibit and those specifically presented for the symposium will be the focus of the first part of the program with discussions between artists and scientists on the co-creation and co-production process. During the second part of the discussion, researchers will present historical, artistic, ecological, biological and sociological perspectives on issues tied to biotechnology and transdisciplinary approaches. Finally, to better understand the circulation and mediation of biotechnological practices in Quebec, key players who work in cultural institutions will discuss ways to define and establish educational programs in contemporary art, life sciences and technology during a roundtable discussion. The public will be invited to reflect on the dynamics of transdisciplinarity as a democratic and creative space.




12:40 a.m.: Arrival of the participants and the public


1 p.m.: Word of welcome

Marie-Josée Parent, director of Les Territoires


1:05 p.m.: Introduction and presentation

Anne-Marie Belley, moderator, organizer of the symposium and curator of the exhibit De la nature. M.A. candidate in the Department of Art History at UQAM


Part 1- De la nature exhibit: the works and the transdisciplinary creation process


1:15 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.: Acousticaquatica, 2013

Claire Kenway, artist and M.A. in the Department of Communications at Concordia University

Chris Elvidge, PhD candidate in the Department of Biology at Concordia University


1:40 – 1:55 p.m.: Malacosoma disstria, 2013

Alison Reiko Loader, artist and PhD candidate in the Department of Communications at Concordia University

Emma Despland, professor in the Department of Biology at Concordia University


2:05 – 2:20 p.m.: The Temporary Archive for Ambiguous Architecture, 2012-2013

Kelly Andres, artist and PhD candidate in the Humanities Doctoral Program: Interdisciplinary Studies in Society and Culture at Concordia University

Stéphane Rousseau, engineer and director of Robotic Sequencing


2:30 – 3 p.m.: coffee break


Part II- Arts and Sciences in the biotechnological era: can we speak of transdisciplinarity?


3 – 3:15 p.m: “La paradisciplinarité arts/sciences: comment contourner les obstacles de la collaboration transdisciplinaire”

– François-Joseph Lapointe, professor in the Department of Biology at Université de Montréal. Doctor of evolutional biology and dance. Author of “How I Became an Art[Scient]ist : a Tale of Paradisciplinarity” SEAD: White Papers, Network for Sciences, Engineering, Arts and Design.


3:25 – 3:40 p.m.: “Renaissance/Baroque: quelques remarques sur les arts et les sciences avant l’ère biotechnologique”

– Itay Sapir, professor in the Department of Art History at UQAM. Author of Ténèbres sans leçons: esthétique et épistémologie de la peinture ténébriste romaine, 1595-1610, Peter Lang AG, in the collection « Nature, Science and the Arts », 2012 ; co-editor of Ways of Knowing: (Un)Doing Methodologies, Imagining Alternatives in the Humanities, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009.


3:50 – 4:05 p.m.: “Les biotechnologies. Un regard sociohistorique”

Mathieu Noury, PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology at Université de Montréal. Author of L’art à l’ère des biotechnologies : la question du vivant dans l’art transgénique d’Eduardo Kac, Paris : Le Manuscrit, 2007 ; «Quand l’art réinvente la vie. Pour une analyse sociologique de l’art transgénique», Cahiers de recherche sociologique, no 50, 2011, pp.121-140. Collaborator for the work Nanotechnologies et Société, Montréal: Boréal, 2010.


4:15 – 4:30 p.m.: “Acte subversif de médiation: transposer le laboratoire dans l’espace d’exposition”

Marianne Cloutier, PhD candidate and lecturer in the Department of Art History at UQAM. Author of “Paul Vanouse, Suspect inversion Center : L’imaginaire de la forensique”, CV93, hiver 2013, p. 35-40 ; “L’expérience immersive des corps: détournements artistiques des technologies d’imagerie médicale” (upcoming in Figures de l’art, revue d’études esthétiques, 2013).


Part III: Transciplinarity: roundtable discussion. Opening up institutional spaces for the practice, research and mediation of biotechnological art in Montréal.

4:30 – 5:15 p.m.


Élaine Boileau, Programs Officer in educational services at the Montréal Insectarium, a museum devoted to teaching visitors about the world of insects.


Sylvie Lacerte, artistic director of the cultural magazine Spirale, Art Historian and Curator. Author of La Médiation de l’art contemporain, Éditions d’art Le Sabord, Collection: Essai, 2007.


Marie-Josée Parent, director of Les Territoires

Contemporary art center. Presentation on the “critical reflection program” of the gallery dedicated to emerging artistic practices and maintaining strong ties between the art world and academic research.


Nicole Roberge, Lab coordinator at Eastern Bloc

The Lab is a site for research and production of art at the intersection of science and technology.


5:15 – 5:30 p.m.: Closing remarks and Q & A session


5:30 p.m.: Cocktail


6:30 p.m.: For those interested in continuing the discussion, a reservation will be made at the Labo Culinaire (on the last floor of the SAT) for a casual meal (R.S.V.P)


Société des arts technologiques [SAT]

1201, boulevard Saint-Laurent, Montréal, Québec

Conferences in French and in English (uninterpreted)