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Research labs

The XS Labs project, Captain Electric and Battery Boy. | Image courtesy of XS Labs The XS Labs project, Captain Electric and Battery Boy. | Image courtesy of XS Labs

Innovation in artistic process and expression is at the heart of the many initiatives being explored in the art, design and performance laboratories in the Faculty of Fine Arts.

While the term 'laboratory' is more common in the sciences, it has been embraced by researcher-creators and scholars in a university context to indicate an emphasis on experimentation, collaboration and interdisciplinarity, leading to new processes, creative communities and innovative works or prototypes.

Research labs in Fine Arts include:

  • AbTeC Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace, co-founded and co-directed by Jason Edward Lewis and Skawennati, Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace (AbTec) is an Aboriginally determined research-creation network whose goal is to ensure Indigenous presence in the web pages, online environments, video games, and virtual worlds that comprise cyberspace
  • The Acts of Listening Lab (ALLab), directed by Luis Carlos Sotelo Castro, Canada Research Chair in Oral History Performance, is a hub for research-creation on the transformative power of listening in the context of oral history performance. It brings together artists-researchers, communities, and activists from across disciplines and cultures interested in exploring alternative and creative ways of making life stories matter in the public sphere.

  • ARTHEMIS, which investigates the evolution of film and moving image studies led by Martin Lefebvre (Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema).

  • Canadian Womens’ Art History Initiative (CWAHI), the Canadian Women Artists History Initiative is a collaborative endeavour that brings resources and researchers together to enhance scholarship on historical women artists in Canada.

  • Drawing Lab Dessin, co-founded by Eric Simon, François Morelli, Patrick Traer and Luanne Martineau, Drawing Lab Dessin provides a platform for action and discussion around contemporary drawing practices.

  • Global Emergent Media Lab, a unique research platform centered on the critical study of global new media led by Joshua Neves (Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema).

  • Institute for Everyday Life, led by Ingrid Bachman, the institute of everyday life (iel) is an art-ideas studio/lab that looks at the everyday as a site to generate, create and present artworks.

  • Integrated Design, Ecology, and Sustainability (IDEAS) for the Built Environment (ideas-be), led by Carmela Cucuzzella, ideas-be  focuses on the study of design projects and practices for the built environment situated at the crossroads of cultural, social, environmental and economic concerns.

  • Lab Xmodal, directed by Chris Salter, Xmodal is dedicated to a deeper exploration of the concept of interaction that goes beyond the traditional, one to one relationship between user and computer and instead towards that of the embodied inhabitant in complex, dynamic media environments.

  • Matralab, a research space that uses interdisciplinary art practice to bridge the gap between emerging art forms led by Sandeep Bhagwati (Music / Theatre).

  • Obx Labs, where researchers provide both the inspiration and the means for others to push the boundaries of computationally-based expression led by Jason Edward Lewis (Design and Computation Arts).

  • Robotics A-Lab

  • Senselab, an international network of artists and academics, writers and makers from a wide diversity of fields, working together at the crossroads of philosophy, art and activism let by Erin Manning (Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema / Studio Arts).

  • Space of Indigenous Learning and the Arts

  • Studio SubTelaBarbara Layne is the Director of Studio subTela where she works with a team of graduate students from Visual Arts and Engineering at Concordia University and a variety of international collaborators. The Studio is focused on the development of intelligent cloth structures for the creation of artistic, performative and functional textiles.
  • Topological Media Lab, a trans-disciplinary atelier-laboratory for collaborative research and creation in movement arts, speculative architecture and experimental philosophy led by Michael Montanaro (Contemporary Dance).
  • XS Labs, a design research studio with a focus on innovation in the fields of electronic textiles and reactive garments led by Joanna Berzowska (Design and Computation Arts).

Other Fine Arts researchers work as part of the Post-Image and Textile and Materiality clusters at the Milieux Institute for Arts, Culture and Technology.


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