Transdisciplinarity: A Canadian Tradition

Proud Canadian coming through!


In Canada (in particular Montreal) we have a great tradition of transdisciplinating  in the arts, especially between the fields of dance/movement and technology. While going down the rabbit hole that is the National Film Board’s website, I came across these gems.

!!ACHTUNG!! These videos are from the future. Proceed with caution…



1) Pas de deux, Norman McLaren, 1968, 13m 22s

Norman McLaren moved to Canada in his late 20’s as a filmmaker/ animator from Scotland. You can wiki him to read his story . I remember watching this film as a young person and being dumbfounded. How did he do this? Painstakingly I guess.

Watch film here



image from NFB site

2) Ni scène ni coulisses, Denis Poulin, 1978, 9 min 41 s

Watch film here




image from NFB site

3) ORA, ONFB, 2011, 15m 35s

This one is INSANELY innovative!!! (or just insane).

I mean, infrared cameras on loan from Lockheed Martin (!!!), dry ice, stellar imagery, beautiful movement…Oh Canadaaaaaa!

Watch film here


How does this topic relate to the work I am doing now?

Aesthetically, this high contrast look runs through a lot of the work I do. I would love it if everyone could switch with their shadow or have an inner gamma filter they could turn on whenever they wanted to.

Artistically, I’m still a dancer at heart and I feel as though it’s still one of the most collaborative interdisciplinary mediums out there. If I look for innovation, I don’t turn solely to contemporary art world but also to the dance world (or the circus).

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