The Inventions of Light / Les inventions de la lumière

This bilingual conference is the 6th edition of the Toronto/Montreal/Lille biennial of artistic exchange. Titled The Inventions of Light / Les Inventions de la Lumière, the conference will focus on what light makes possible in the parallel realms of perception and creative imagination. As part of the conference, there will also be the launch of the new international short film festival, Moving–Image-Arts, and various light-related exhibitions in the School of Image Arts. The overall goal of the three-day conference is to explore the “inventions of light” collectively and to develop an interdisciplinary approach to the many inventions that light has generated in painting, photography, cinema, animation, and digital arts.

Drawing on an array of disciplines, participants will share their theoretical and artistic approaches to light and explore  how light has been used as a creative medium. Our objective in combining the work of scholars and artists is to develop novel approaches to the interrelationships among light, phenomena of the visible world, and philosophical thinking about visible experience: light projected into dark spaces; how technology has expanded the realm of the visible in both arts and sciences; the invention and development of flash technology; and nuclear light and the post-nuclear world. 

This international fine arts conference cycle originated in 2001 from discussions among Ryerson faculty members Don Snyder and Pierre Tremblay, and Dr. Louise Poissant, Dean of the Faculty of Arts at the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM). The first Québec/Ontario: New Forms/New Works conference was held at Ryerson University in 2003. The collaboration became international in 2008 for the third conference at Le Fresnoy, the only postgraduate art school in France, when its founder, Alain Fleischer, became part of the team.

PROGRAM

Introductory remarks

Charles Davis
Pierre Tremblay
Don Snyder
Bruno Lessard
Gerda Cammaer
Alain Fleischer
Louise Poissant


30mins

Image Arts Commons (ground floor)

Keynote address

Écume/Froth
Luc Courchesne (Societé des arts technologiques SAT)


2hrs

Image Arts Commons (ground floor)

Welcome reception

2hrs

Third Floor

“Light Made Visible” exhibition

The Inventions of Light conference will also present an exhibition on the third floor of Ryerson’s School of Image Arts, “Light Made Visible”.

On view throughout the conference, this exhibition utilizes gallery spaces, corridors and hallways, projection screens and even the LED systems that illuminate the building’s exterior to present works that explore conference themes. Selections are presented from Marc Audette’s Line Project, Philippe Blanchard’s New Troglodytes, David Bouchard’s Constructed Land, Max Dean’s Wax On, Wax Off, Joseph Devitt Tremblay’s Watching You Watching You, Benjamin Edelberg’s Ecstatic Shock, Ed Slopek’s Heart of Tyche, and Michael Snow’s Solar Breath; these will be complemented by Birgit Bachler’s video from the 2015 Wellington Light Festival, LUX, on the 3rd floor video screen, and a presentation of Dave Colangelo and Patricio Davilla’s In the Air, Tonight, presented on the LED façade of the Image Arts building itself. The opening reception of the conference following Luc Courchesne’s keynote will also serve as the opening for this exhibition, to which the public is invited.

Curated by Don Snyder. On view throughout the conference.

Artists:
Marc Audette: The Line Project
Brigit Bachler: LUX (Wellington Light Festival 2015, video)
Philippe Blanchard: New Troglodytes II
David Bouchard: Constructed Land
Dave Colangelo & Patricio Davila: In The Air, Tonight (IMA building LED Façade)
Max Dean: Wax On, Wax Off
Joseph Devitt Tremblay: Watching You Watching You
Ben Edelberg: Ecstatic Shock
Edward Slopek: Heart of Tyche
Michael Snow: Solar Breath (Northern Caryatids)


45mins

School of Image Arts, 3rd floor

Coffee

30mins

Sound stage 3rd floor

Morning Session A: Light and Reason – The World Illuminated

A discussion of light and seeing, and the interrelationships among light, phenomena of the visible world, and philosophical thinking about visible experience.
Moderator: Thierry Gervais (Ryerson University)

Metamorphic Animation: Light, Plasticity and Legibility in Bauhaus Performances
Jungmin Lee (Harvard University)

Man Ray’s “Electricité” series and the Commodification of Light
Jennifer Friess (University of Kansas)

Espaces et temps visibles de la lumière
Christine Palmieri (UQAM)


La lumière virtuelle et le mirage du photoréalisme
Benoit Melançon (UQAC)


2hrs

Sound Stage, 3rd floor

Coffee break

15 min

Morning Session B: Light and Reason – The World Illuminated 2

A discussion of light and seeing, and the interrelationships among light, phenomena of the visible world, and philosophical thinking about visible experience.
Moderator: Bruno Lessard (Ryerson University)

Apocalyptic Logic and Nuclear Catastrophe
Raphael Zagury-Orly (Bezalel Academy of Fine Arts)

The Light of Nothingness: Existential Reverberations in Contemporary Art
Taliesin Thomas (The Institute for Doctoral Studies in the Visual Arts)

Le phénomène-lumière: une mutation de la vie sensible
Pierre Ouellet (UQAM)

Expérience d’œuvres-lumière: Une étude d’œuvres de lumière englobantes et interactives et leurs perceptions visuelles incarnées
Aurélie Besson (UQAM)

2hrs

Sound Stage 3rd floor

Lunch

45 min

Afternoon Session A: Light and Imagination – Metaphors and Visions

A discussion of artists using light in a metaphorical sense, this session will move from the realm of the visible to that of the imagined and the metaphorical. Just as light illuminates the world, it also illuminates the imagination.

Moderator: Gerda Cammaer (Ryerson University)

Light Art, Abstract Photography, and Multi-Sensory Experience
Kristen Adlhoch (University of St. Andrews)

Dynamique de la pénombre: obscurcir la salle, illuminer l'écoute, penser le surgissement
Frédéric Dallaire (UQAM)

The Idea of Colour: Newton’s Skeleton, Goethe’s Gentle Empiricism and Olafur Eliasson’s “Room for One Colour”
Dave Kemp (Ryerson University)

La lumière virtuelle dans le domaine des arts numériques
Yan Breuleux (UQAC/NAD)


2hrs

Sound Stage 3rd floor

Coffee break

15mins

Afternoon Session B: Light and Imagination – Projection and Darkness

A discussion of light as projected into/onto darkness, and darkness as a quality in itself, exploring both expressive and metaphorical aspects. The discussion may include visual artists concerned with the lower range of the tone scale: the range of the twilit, the tenebrous, the shadowed, the threatened or the obscured.

Moderator: Bruno Lessard (Ryerson University)


Draw of Darkness
Christina Seely (Dartmouth College)


Turrell’s Light in Plato’s Cave: New Perspectives on Projection Art
David Zagoury (University of Cambridge)


Le pli du temps dans le dispositif-lumière
Émile Morin (UQAM)


Will Gill, Cape Spear and the Struggle of Light: Projection and Darkness
Jennifer Dyer (Memorial University)


2 hrs

Sound Stage 3rd floor

MOVING-IMAGE-ARTS Film Festival

1hr

IMA307, 3rd floor

Informal Reception

1hr

Third floor

Coffee

30mins

Third floor

Morning Session A: Shadows of the Invisible

A discussion of the uncanny ability of photography to reveal what is invisible to the naked eye. Features three artists whose imaginative pursuits expand on the scientific curiosity that once was the main impetus behind imaging phenomena beyond the realm of the visible.

Moderator: Claude Baillargeon (Oakland University)


Wild Nights, Imaging the Unseen
Michael Flomen (independent artist)


The Radiant Forest
Marie-Jeanne Musiol (independent artist)


Night Journey Project
Susan kae Grant (Texas Woman’s University)


1hr30min

Sound stage, 3rd floor

Coffee break

15 min

Morning Session B: Visible / Invisible

A discussion of how technology has expanded the realm of the visible in both arts and sciences. This includes X-ray and infrared technologies as well as high-speed imaging and remote surveillance.

Moderator: Louise Poissant (FQRSC)


Faire écran
Alain Fleischer (Le Fresnoy)


Light in Orbit: Thomas Wilfred’s Lumia
Keely Orgeman (Yale University Art Gallery)


Rendre visibles les obscurités
Mario Côté (UQAM)


Spectrographies
Dorothée Smith (Le Fresnoy)


2 hrs

Sound Stage, 3rd floor

Lunch

45 min

Artist Talk

Dave Colangelo & Patricio Davila (In the Air, Tonight)


30 min

Room 304, third floor

Afternoon Session A: Flash, Lightning, Explosion

A discussion of the use of all types of flash in photography and film, both historical and contemporary. This session will explore the invention and development of flash technology, and the expressive uses of flash devices in both documentary practice and other realms of image-making.

Moderator: Don Snyder (Ryerson University)

Berenice Abbott and the Physical Sciences Study Committee: Photographically Visualizing Physics in Mid-Century America
Colleen O’Reilly (University of Pittsburgh)

Everything that Shines, Sees
Dominique Somers (Doctoral School of the Arts, Ghent)

A Digital Trip: Strobe Light as New Media
Tina Rivers Ryan (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York)


1hr 30min

Sound Stage, 3rd floor

Coffee break

15 min

Afternoon Session B: Nuclear Light

A discussion of the unique qualities of nuclear light, as documented by a generation of filmmakers, photographers, and media artists. This will be followed by a presentation of imagery of the post-nuclear world, both illuminated and in darkness.

Moderator: Blake Fitzpatrick (Ryerson University)


Fiat Lux: The Reign of Nuclear Light
Robert Del Tredici (independent artist)


Atomic Tourist: Trinity
Mary Kavanaugh (University of Lethbridge)


Nagasaki, 11:02 – Land of the Second Sun
Katy McCormick (Ryerson University)


1hr 30min

Sound stage, 3rd floor

Closing remarks

Sound stage (3rd floor))

EXHIBITION

On view throughout the conference, this exhibition utilizes gallery spaces, corridors and hallways, projection screens and even the LED systems that illuminate the building’s exterior to present works that explore conference themes. Selections are presented from Marc Audette’s Line Project, Philippe Blanchard’s New Troglodytes, David Bouchard’s Constructed Land, Max Dean’s Wax On, Wax Off, Joseph Devitt Tremblay’s Watching You Watching You, Benjamin Edelberg’s Ecstatic Shock, Ed Slopek’s Heart of Tyche, and Michael Snow’s Solar Breath; these will be complemented by Birgit Bachler’s video from the 2015 Wellington Light Festival, LUX, on the 3rd floor video screen, and a presentation of Dave Colangelo and Patricio Davilla’s In the Air, Tonight, presented on the LED façade of the Image Arts building itself. The opening reception of the conference following Luc Courchesne’s keynote will also serve as the opening for this exhibition, to which the public is invited.

Curated by Don Snyder.

Artists:

Marc Audette: The Line Project
Brigit Bachler: LUX (Wellington Light Festival 2015, video)
Philippe Blanchard: New Troglodytes II
David Bouchard:Constructed Land
Dave Colangelo & Patricio Davila: In The Air, Tonight (IMA building LED Façade)
Max Dean: Wax On, Wax Off
Joseph Devitt Tremblay: Watching You Watching You
Ben Edelberg: Ecstatic Shock
Edward Slopek: Heart of Tyche
Michael Snow: Solar Breath (Northern Caryatids)

ORGANIZERS

plus

Gerda Cammaer

Ryerson University

plus

Alain Fleischer

LE FRESNOY

plus

Bruno Lessard

Ryerson University

plus

Louise Poissant

UQÀM

plus

Don Snyder

Ryerson University

plus

Pierre Tremblay

Ryerson University

MOVING-IMAGE-ARTS Festival logo

MOVING-IMAGE-ARTS Short Film Festival

Moving-Image-Arts is a collaborative short film festival created by artists/curators Gerda Cammaer and Pierre Tremblay. This one-hour film festival is a juried showcase of short films and videos from around the world, that explore the theme of light and approach this theme in original and imaginative ways.

venue

School of Image Arts - Ryerson University

122 Bond St
Toronto, ON M5B 1E9
Canada

more information

SPONSORS

The conference is made possible thanks to the support of our sponsors and partners.