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Convergence Initiative: Artist-neuroscientist working groups revealed

Creative collaborations will lead to exhibition in May
February 13, 2017
By Andy Murdoch

Park-laurin-beaucase-grizowski-620 Kevin Jung-Moo Park, Claire Grizowski and Caroline Laurin-Beaucase are one of the Convergence Initiative's artist-neuroscientist teams. They are planning to construct an installation based on the body clock.

Last Friday, Concordia fine arts students revealed seventeen collaborative art projects that will be co-created with postdoctoral fellow neuroscientists as part of a local project called the Convergence Initiative: Perceptions of Neuroscience.

The projects are ambitious and wide-ranging: ocular portraits of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder sufferers, visualizations of noise in the brain, stereoscopes that reveal brain arousal, and memes that explore the benefits of drinking water before bed.

The participating fine arts students take a course (DART 461 Independent Study) led by Professor pk langshaw, researcher and invited artist Christine Swintak, and neuroscience and biology advisor Najmeh Khalili-Mahani, along with the support of Rebecca Duclos, Dean of Fine Arts.

“I was really impressed,” says langshaw. “Each project feels like a very strong collaboration. You can see some projects that are quite committed to a certain vision, while others have clearly mapped a blueprint for working together.”

The Convergence Initiative project runs from November to May. Its goal is to fire the creative neurons of both brain researchers and fine arts students through interdisciplinary conversation and the co-creation of art inspired by scientific research. It brings together Concordia’s Faculty of Fine Arts, the BRaIN Program of the RI-MUHC, the Canadian Association for Neuroscience (CAN) and the Montreal General Hospital Foundation.

These groups will create artworks that will be curated and exhibited at the CAN annual meeting in May 2017.

Here’s a selection of group project proposals. All of the groups will be featured on the Faculty of Fine Arts Instagram account.

Matt Hammond-Collins and Andrew Kaplan
Matt Hammond-Collins and Andrew Kaplan

Planning a lightbox audio-visual installation that displays the regrowth of damaged axons in spinal cord injuries.

Shayna Dwor and Sandra Magalhaes

Proposing a series of memes that employ audio and visual materials to examine the spread and prevention of Multiple Sclerosis.

Paméla Simard and Hunter Shaw
Paméla Simard and Hunter Shaw

Building a sculpture in wood to recreate the 800 noisettes that exist in the single eye of a fruit fly.

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