March 11, 2021 at 5pm
Virtual Zoom conference
In 2014, artist Stefan St-Laurent produced a body of work for an exhibition entitled S.v.p. nourrir les animaux (Please feed the animals), which was presented at AXENÉO7. His questions still persist: is it possible to intervene ethically in the animal world, without taking anything in return?
In 1973, British psychologist Richard D. Ryder coined the term “speciesism” to describe the widespread discrimination that is practiced by humans against other species; since that time, we have developed interesting expressions to describe our current relationship to the animal world: human supremacy, anthrocentrism, and human centralism. Some of us anthropomorphize animals to reestablish a bond with them; through this narcissistic game, we have lost sight of our own animality by projecting a host of human qualities onto animals. We train them to imitate us, and we move further away from them in this process. However, the best human-animal artistic collaborations are relational and are deeply rooted in reciprocal love and respect; exchange and freedom are an integral part of the creative process.
During his “at home” residency, St-Laurent will begin the design of an interdisciplinary work that incorporates diary entries, philosophy around animal ethics, performance, video, puppet art, and music.
A multdisciplinary artist and independent curator, Stefan St-Laurent was born in Moncton, New Brunswick in 1974. He has a Bachelor of Media Arts from Ryerson University in Toronto. His performance and video work has been shown in numerous galleries and institutions in Canada (YYZ, Toronto; Ottawa Art Gallery; Western Front, Vancouver; Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, Halifax) and in Europe (Centre national de la photographie, Paris; Centre d’art contemporain de Basse-Normandie; Edsvik Konst och Kultur, Sweden). In 2008, he was the Curator of the Biennale d’art performatif de Rouyn-Noranda. He was also Guest Curator for the Symposium international d’art contemporain de Baie-Saint-Paul in 2010 and 2011. He was Curator of Galerie SAW Gallery in Ottawa from 2002 to 2012. He created Chanson du cœur with his twin brother Jason St-Laurent, commissioned by the French Theatre at the National Arts Centre in 2014 under the artistic direction of Christian Lapointe. He is Director of AXENÉO7 in Gatineau since 2014, and Adjunct Professor in the Visual Arts Department at the University of Ottawa since 2011.Artist Profile