Sensorium exhibit exploring ecologies of post-natural word moves online

An online exhibition featuring works out of York University’s Sensorium: Centre of Digital Arts and Technology will demonstrate the creative ways in which artists, researchers and Organized Research Units (ORUs) are adapting to limitations of COVID-19.

Running Oct. 13 to 18, the exhibition “Life, a Sensorium” is hosted by Sensorium, a research centre for creative inquiry and experimentation at the intersection of the media arts, performance, and digital culture, and is included as part of the 2020 International Symposium of Electronic Arts (ISEA). The exhibit is curated by Professor Janine Marchessault and Melanie Wilmink, recent PhD graduate of visual art and art history, and features the works of Sensorium faculty and graduate artist/researchers.

Infranet by Hanu Ji and Graham Wakefield

“The exhibition unfolds at the nexus of art, science and technology through the works of artists affiliated with Sensorium, who collectively explore the entangled ecologies of the post-natural world,” reads the exhibit’s curatorial statement. “Through multi-sensory experiences that include installations, virtual and mixed reality, 360-degree videos, performances, expanded media and sculptural forms, these artists explore the different ways that contemporary sensorial relations – human/non-human, natural/ artificial – stage complex articulations and expansions of the real.”

ISEA 2020 and the Sensorium curatorial exhibition was originally scheduled to take place May 2020 in Montreal; however, due to COVID-19, the symposium was postponed and reimagined/transferred online.

“ISEA is an important conference and festival for a lot of our faculty members, and having a chance to showcase the research that we have assiduously cultivated over the years is a landmark opportunity for us,” said Sensorium Director Joel Ong. “This year's format also highlights the research-creation process behind each work, something that we feel is increasingly of value in a time where a lot of us are approaching uncharted waters at new interdisciplinary frontiers.”

Visitors of the exhibit can expect to explore computer-generated organisms interacting with viewing bodies. Site-specific installations, kinetic sculptures, virtual environments and video games explore our interactions and collaborations with multi-species ecologies. The works in “Life, A Sensorium” range from shadow plays and optical illusions to VR wanderings through cosmic orchestral staging. The blended physical and virtual nature of these aesthetic interactions and environments provide access into worlds not ordinarily perceptible.

For more, visit sensorium.ampd.yorku.ca/isea-2020.

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