We Are Conditioned To Our Fate? Is a community-based exhibition project led by the artist collective DodoLab (Guelph/Hamilton). This project is both rooted in the history of Bishop's University and its current students and community.
Curated by Yael Filipovic & Stephanie Nadeau
We Are Conditioned To Our Fate? is a community-based exhibition project led by the artist collective DodoLab (Guelph/Hamilton) that undertakes a critical, yet playful, exploration of the culture and identity of Bishop's University by probing the perceptions of students, alumni, faculty and the administration, as well as the wider community of Lennoxville. Produced to function as a creative laboratory that allows for dialogue, participation and a continued accumulation of research, this exhibition project is both rooted in the history of Bishop’s University and its current students and community.
During three research visits in the 2012-13 academic year, DodoLab gauged and reflected on what is real, meaningful and relevant, and what is empty, and potentially disruptive, within the rituals and narratives of Bishop’s University. Through informal actions, participation in existing events, and direct collaborations with students and alumni, they explored the narratives of community and institutional identity. The resulting exhibition project, whose title nods to the very popular school song, asks us to consider how the “spirit” of Bishop's is conditioning the fate of both the university and Lennoxville.
This is the 2nd special project within the Community Art Lab of the Foreman Art Gallery’s three-year research initiative titled 'How does Art Teach?' This long term platform seeks to consider the role of art as a tool for critical political and social engagement.. We Are Conditioned To Our Fate? is curated by the Foreman Art Gallery’s Curator of Education and Cultural Action, Stephanie Nadeau, and independent education curator Yaël Filipovic.
DodoLab is an evolving collaborative program lead by artists Lisa Hirmer and Andrew Hunter. Hunter is an artist, writer, curator and educator based in Hamilton, Ontario. Hirmer is a designer, photographer, artist and writer based in Guelph, Ontario. Through engaging, experimental and thought provoking community research projects, their work together is both a collaboration between themselves, and also acts as a meeting place for peoples of all cultures, disciplines, generations and genders.
The name Dodolab originates from the archetypal extinct species and reminds us that a lack of resiliency and an individual existence is a hazardous strategy for survival. Without collaboration, dialogue and interaction, are we setting ourselves up for extinction, are we “going the way of the Dodo”? Exploring the impacts of narratives of identity has been at the core of their 2009-11 Ideas of Canada program: their three-year residency program in 2009-11 on Prince Edward Island; the 2010-12 series of creative lab projects in Sudbury (Canada); and the 2010-11 Rijeka (Croatia) project. Andrew Hunter is a graduate of the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design.
Lisa Hirmer has a Bachelor of Architectural Studies and a Masters of Architecture from the University of Waterloo where she completed a thesis about the significance of nature and wilderness in contemporary culture that awarded her an Ontario Association of Architects Award of Excellence and placed her on the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada’s Honour Roll. The two received the Independent Critics and Curators in Architecture grant (2011) for the collaborative research and publication project Marginalia.
Opening Reception: Wednesday, April 16, 2013 from 5:00 - 7:00 pm
Foreman Art Gallery of Bishop's University
Rue College Street (Lennoxville), Sherbrooke
Hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 12 to 5pm