NODES: A Milieux Film

NODES, directed by Vjosana Shkurti and Agustina Isidori, is a short experimental documentary that explores alternative ways of documenting Milieux’s research-creation projects outside of their usual academic or studio environments. Nodes frames these projects in new contexts where they can take a new breath. 

We took a 3D printer and looked at its movements so closely that it formed into a spacecraft controlled by a giant spider,” explain the directors. “We made a tiny robot land on the moon and watched as they lost the love of their life; we found a stranger in the woods; we met an avatar from the future in real life;  we discovered lost vessels on the shore; we searched for clues on the walls; we became entranced by a dance of hair; we were held within circuits embedded on fabric; we witnessed the birth of a new earth; we saw skin crawl its way out; we were blinded by lights speaking a coded language; we danced with them; we saw a reflection of a ghost in our last days before the end of it all.

During the process of making this film, project creators participated in the creative decisions to figure out collectively how to best create a story around their object. By experimenting with scale, lighting and natural locations, the film looks at these projects with a new eye that has influenced the project creators in return. The feedback loop is where this film becomes an extension of the ethos that is ascribed to research-creation as a process of research, experimentation, development and innovation.

Research-creation projects with a physical component became the focus of this film as they allowed us to manipulate their shape and scale into sometimes unrecognizable forms or new structures and performative characters. 

Featured Projects (in order of appearance)

Machine Ménagerie  Joseph Thibodeau
SensumAlexandre Saunier
Mannequin for the Otsitsakáion costume
(from She Falls for Ages)
Skawennati & the Indigenous Futures Cluster
PromisesIda Marie Toft
TracesJess Marcotte
ListenerSuzanne Kite
Body:Suits:ScoreAlex Bachmayer, Sandeep Bhagwati, Marcelo Wanderley, Joanna Berzowska, Isabelle Cossette
The Leftovers of the SwordPatil Tchilinguirian
Bucci dressThéo Chauvirey & WhiteFeather Hunter
RootsEnric Llagostera & Rebecca Goodine
Pero Sans CimonEmma Forgues & Sam Bourgault
tangibleFlux φ plenumorphic chaosmosisNavid Navab
Cloud bodiesAllison Moore
TotemChris Salter & Alexandre Saunier, Sofian Audry, Thomas Spier, Takashi Ikegami
The Enchantment of Cloth: Book / Sound Table / Mirror / Sensing CarpetStudio subTela (collaborators: Barbara Layne, Janis Jefferies, Marc-André Cossette and Ahmed Khisk / contributors: Ryth Kesselring, Claire Nadon, Tahseen Mustafa, Fanny Savoie, Martin Peach, Hesam Khoshneviss, Geneviève Moisan, Sareh Majidi)

Featured Musical Compositions

Silktone Project – Contact from the ice / Plumes of Water (Beethoven training data set) / Generative music performance CMMAS  Marc-André Cossette
Tierra y Sol / Clones (with Arturo Gervasoni) / Civilizaciones / KarmaRicardo Dal Farra

About the Directors

Vjosana Shkurti is a filmmaker based in Montreal, Canada. Born in Albania and raised in Greece, her artistic work explores aspects of origin, memory and human relationship with technology. She has exhibited in galleries and festivals internationally both as writer/director and as director of photography. In 2018, her short film Leagan (Peppermint Ashes) was part of the Official Selection of Prends ça court! and was awarded the Prix Air Canada Enroute. In 2017, Vjosana received the highest award from Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema at Concordia University for outstanding achievement in film production. She has a background in architectural design from the University of Toronto, which informs her approach towards perspective, framing and scale in cinema.  

Agustina Isidori is an Argentinian-Italian visual artist and researcher based in Montreal. Agustina is a multi-disciplinary artist working mostly with photography, video and video games. Agustina completed a degree in Film Studies in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2012. She has a degree in Digital Technologies in Art and Design and a Master of Design at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada. Her work focuses on a research based approach and engages with complex subjects related to difficult knowledge and the violation of human rights. Her work has been exhibited in various exhibitions in Argentina, Venezuela, Canada, United States, Spain, Italy, Austria and Portugal.