Distributing the Insensible (Dec 10-20, 2016)

International event bringing together 71 Immediations Partnership participants from all 4 SenseLab hubs around the question of what an anarchive can do ((link “anarchive” to the Anarchiving page on Immediations menu)). A series of materializations of the anarchive culminating two years of concept-making and technique-tending were collectively produced on site. ADD French version: Cette rencontre internationale a rassemblé 71 participants du Partenariat “Immédiations” originaires de tous les 4 hubs du SenseLab. Nous avons travaillé collectivement sur la question de ce que peut une anarchive ((((link “anarchive” to the Anarchiving page on Immediations menu)). Un ensemble de matérialisations de l’anarchive a été réalisé sur place, culminant deux ans d’exploration conceptuelle et de recherche sur la technique anarchivale.


Fugitive Planning (2015)

Du 11 au 26 juillet 2015 rencontres et improvisations autour de The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning and Black Study par F. Moten et S. Harney (Autonomedia, 2013).

International event building on a year-long engagement with Fred Moten’s and Stefano Harney’s The Undercommons. The event was in collaboration with our partner DS4si and with Black Lives Matter.

Knotspace (2014)

This international event, organised in the framework of the Immediations Partnership by the SenseLab’s Australian hub, took place in Sydney. Its aim was to launch the SenseLab’s research into the concept and practice of the anarchive. The event implemented a new technique for self-organising collective creative and conceptual work – an open invitation to participants to initiate “pop-up propositions” informed by the budding concept of the anarchive, at any time and in any quantity. ADD FRENCH: Cette rencontre internationale, organisée dans le cadre du Partenariat “Immédiations” par le hub australien du SenseLab, a eu lieu à Sydney en décembre 2014. Il a eu pour but de lancer le volet “anarchive” de la recherche du projet Immédiations sur le concept et la pratique de l’anarchive. Une nouvelle technique pour l’auto-organisation collective du travail créatif et collectif a été déployée – une invitation ouverte adressée aux participants afin d’initier des “propositions furtives” informées par le concept embryonnaire de l’anarchive, à n’importe quel moment et en nombre indéfini.


Three Mile Meal (2013)

Three Mile Meal was a food-sharing and lack-of-information-gathering SenseLab/DS4si event, that occurred  August 23-25, 2pm-5pm. You could find us at our 3 public kitchens – Durocher and Bernard in Outremont  for a kosher snack!), the Fruiterie Mile End (crêpes and make-your-own blended drinks!) and Parc Ex (Dosas and more!).

Into the Midst (2012)

Into the Midst is a five-day collaborative research-creation workshop in the SATosphere, the Society for Art and Technology’s interactive immersive projection environment. The  workshop will feature hands-on experimentation toward exploring the potential for this environment to host the emergence of new forms of experience. The experimentation will  be accompanied by explorations in the philosophy of experience aimed at fashioning a vocabulary adequate to the emergent immersive potential. Key issues the workshop will address are: how interactive live movement within the space can modulate the experience of the projected space (and vice versa) in ways that alter habitual modes of perception; how the relationship between inside and outside spaces might be modulated, using the SAT building and its immediate urban surroundings as raw material; how frustrations of expectations regarding the responsiveness of interactive systems might lead, positively, to new qualities of aesthetic experience. The workshop will be preceded by group discussions and preparatory work using online collaborative tools. The results of the workshop will be presented performatively to the pubic in the SATosphere. The workshop is collectively led and organized by the the SenseLab network.

Generating the Impossible (2011)

Technologies of Lived Abstraction culminated in July 2011 with ‘Generating the Impossible’. Retreating for a week to a remote encampment in Northern Quebec before returning for athree day reactivation of the research program in Montreal, fifty-five international participants explored the limits of a collaborative creative process through techniques of improvisation across heterogeneous backgrounds, following no scripts, without a predetermined goal, and responsive to the durational intensities of encounter. Preceeded by several months of fluid but regular collaboration at a distance such as Skype-based reading groups, participants arrived at GTI with a gift for a potlatch-style exchange that could launch a kind of relational practice.  Over the course of GTI, an always-dissolving and recomposing collective dedicated ten days to a critical multidisciplinary creative process that involved both a movement of thought and a production of an aesthetic residuum, i.e., an art “object”.  Generating the Impossible thus put to work a key insight emerging from Technologies of Lived Abstraction: that research-creation is fundamentally an ecological practice. The resulting techniques, works and movements of thought are all marked by this ecological orientation, and will be detailed in a forthcoming issue of Inflexions.

Society of Molecules (May 1 – 7, 2009)

Society of Molecules was a distributed international event organized by the SenseLab. Each molecule was composed of 3-10 people in 15 locations across the world. One member of each molecule was designated as an “emissary” and visited another molecule during the period leading up to the event. Emissaries deposited a “seed” with the host molecule and brought back a “recipe” to their home molecule. Molecular events were conceived as local interventions with ethico-aesthetic reverbations on a micropolitical level.

Into the Folds (May 13 – 15, 2008)

Into the Folds – a 3-day event that culminates in the launch of Slow Clothes – a participatory installation event (Society for Art and Technology). Through close readings of philosophical texts on movement, and movement experimentation, the workshop asks: how do we craft conditions for participation? How do we create enabling constraints for an improvisatory movement of a collective?

Housing the Body; Dressing the Environment (2007)

Housing the Body began where Dancing the Virtual left off, expanding the concern with the body in movement to its co-constitutive relationship to the built environment, summed up in the formula “what emanates from the body and what emanates from the architectural surround intermixes” (Arakawa+Gins). Participants worked together online for several months in advance of the event to develop the techniques for thought and action that emerged during Dancing the Virtual into a collectively self-organizing approach to creative encounters akin to a structured improvisation. Work groups prepared “platforms for relation”: set-ups designed to trigger oriented but open-ended creative interactions around specific issues. The six platforms were “Around Architecture” (tactility, movement and the experience of space), “Sound Surrounds” (experimenting with the ambient modulation of the space of interaction, for example using an invented instrument, the Ice Xylophone), “Food Platform” (sight, texture, taste, for example through a blind meal), “Dancing the Environment” (balance, proprioception and space), “Becoming Responsive” (activating the relation to screen space through motion sensing), and “Fashioning Skins” (interplay between the surface of the body and architectural surfaces, for example through a fabric installation). The platforms were encouraged to morph and mesh during the 3-day event.

Dancing the Virtual (2005)

Dancing the Virtual was a three day research-creation event that launched from the proposition that “what moves as a body returns as the movement of thought”.  The first event in the five-part Technologies of Lived Abstraction series sent out a call for participation rather than papers; thirty-five people responded from all over the world and came to Montreal to experiment with the creation of working environments conducive to sensing “thought in action”. The special focus on developing techniques of collaboration that activate the sensing body was intensively explored through the on-site elaboration of such practices as concept speed dating, diagrammatic discussions or ecologies oftext, string and bodies, small workshops in calligraphic gestures, performing visualization and relational movement. The success of Dancing the Virtual was not only at the  level of event,challenging participants to play with new platforms of experimentation emerging from a speculative pragmatism; it also reworked the nature of the research-creation event, less focused on an end-point of a practically achieved object than in the elaborating and testing of generative techniques that would continue to resonate after the fact.