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BREATHING AESTHETICS:A Talk with Jean-Thomas Tremblay and Alice Jarry

2022-11-25 @ 15:00 - 17:00

Members: Jill Didur
Clusters: Speculative Life

Join us for the first installment in a series of talks planned collaboratively by CARG, CRIE, and SPAM: Critical Anthropocene Speakers Series, featuring a talk with Dr. Jean-Thomas Tremblay (York) and Dr. Alice Jarry (Concordia).

Dr. Tremblay’s talk previews the monograph Breathing Aesthetics, in which they argue that difficult breathing indexes the uneven distribution of risk in a contemporary era marked by the increasing contamination, weaponization, and monetization of air. Tremblay shows how biopolitical and necropolitical forces tied to the continuation of extractive capitalism, imperialism, and structural racism are embodied and experienced through respiration

Dr. Jarry’s presentation will address the material and conceptual aspects of the collaborative research-creation project capture*. Exploring how ‘membranes’ can act as porous interfaces that enable exchanges across systems and transform what is filtered in the process, capture aims at materializing the microscopic invisibility of air pollution and the macroscopic dimension of its socio-environmental issues.


In preparation for the talk, the group is hosting a reading group event this Friday, November 11th, from 3:00-4:30 PM, to read Jean-Thomas Tremblay’s Breathing Aesthetics‘ first chapter “Breathing against Nature”! If you want to participate email priscilla.jolly@concordia.ca to be added to mailing list and receive pdf. of reading.

Jean-Thomas Tremblay is Assistant Professor of Environmental Humanities at York University. They are the author of Breathing Aesthetics (Duke University Press, 2022) and co-editor of Avant-Gardes in Crisis: Art and Politics in the Long 1970s (State University of New York Press, 2021). Jean-Thomas is currently working on two books: The Art of Environmental Inaction and Negative Life: The Cinema of Extinction.

Alice Jarry is an artist-researcher and an assistant professor of Design and Computation Arts at Concordia University. She holds the Concordia University Research Chair in Critical Practices in Materials and Materiality and is the director of Milieux Institute Speculative Life Biolab. Her research focuses on residual matter, and responsive biomaterials for the built environment. Specializing in site-specific works, socio-environmental design, art-science practices, and tangible media, Jarry examines how materiality – engaged in processes of transformation with sites, technology, and communities – can provoke the emergence of adaptive forms and resilient socio-environmental relations.


15:00 - 17:00
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