This video presents three research-creation projects that explore the concept of screen-membranes through different dispositifs:, Fossilation, and Blob Detection. Not only connected with their environment and the public but also sensitive with the latter, these works engage relations pertaining to material science, data physicalization, and sensory studies directly bonded with socio-political and environmental problematics. By investigating different materialities in motion linked with the discrete signals of their surroundings, this presentation aims to discuss new ways to rebuild interconnections between the milieux, the human and more-than-human agents and the build environment.

A video by Brice Ammar-Khodja narrated by Jean-Louis Cassarino. (2019)
A performative installation by Brice Ammar-Khodja and VH SOUND.

Immersed into the heart of the restaurant-gallery Dalan Art Gallery in Erevan (Armenia), is an interactive installation composed of three happenings and an exhibition. Inspired by the “legendary Armenian hospitality”, this installation invites the public in an improvised dialogue. Whereas the participants drink, eat and debate about the Armenian “art of living”, wired electronic sensors crawling all over the table monitor and collect in real-time related to breathing (alcohol concentrations in the air, voice pitch) and movements (agitation, vibration). The environment seems to answer to each participant’s actions: light distortions arise on the table, different soundscapes emergent from acoustic membranes and the table’s artifacts slowly propel all along the diner. Not only observer but also participant, the table seems like it wants to communicate with the public and intervein in the debate, sometimes disturbing and sometimes stimulating one’s speech.

The exhibition space turns into an experimental laboratory activated by the merge of both the public and the artists. The performance seeks to collect, produce, and archive different aspects of the Armenian culture, which transmission remains through a traditional orality.

Creation and Production team
Coordination: Brice Ammar-Khodja
Design, production and computing: Brice Ammar-Khodja
Interactive sound design: VH SOUND
Performative music: Alexander Hakobyan & VH SOUND

Aknowledgment has receive the support of Atelier Mondial (CH) and Kulturdialog Armenien (AR).
The performative installation was exhibited at Dalan Art Gallery in the frame of the Second International Print Biennale Yerevan 2019.

Fossilation (2021)
A collective project carried out by Brice Ammar-Khodja, Alexandra Bachmayer, Samuel Bianchini, Marie-Pier Boucher, Didier Bouchon, Maria Chekhanovich, Matthew Halpenny, Alice Jarry, Raphaëlle Kerbrat, Annie Leuridan, Vanessa Mardirossian, Asa Perlman, Philippe Vandal, Lucile Vareilles.

A large bioplastic membrane hovers above the ground like a film strip. Its colour is animated by the fluctuating lights and cables stretching out towards the ceiling. Rather than being the result of shooting an image, these motifs result from a slow form-taking process: the imprint of an actual electronic display device. Like a fossil from our own era, the components printed onto matter slowly disapear. The membrane and its sensors are connected to the pipes of Centre Pompidou and convert the fluxes of the building into electricity. The unstable light thus reacts to interferences originating from the capturing of the space's residual energies and enhance an ecosystem in which the image is composed with the space. Alice Jarry : Design and Computation Arts, dir. Milieux Speculative Life Biolab Samuel Bianchini : EnsadLab, dir. Reflective Interaction et Chaire arts et sciences Marie-Pier Boucher : iSchool de l’Université de Toronto Missauga.

Creation and Production team
Coordination: Alice Jarry, Samuel Bianchini, Marie-Pier Boucher
Experimenting and making the bioplastic membrane: Alexandra Bachmayer, Maria Chekhanovich, Vanessa Mardirossian with the collaboration of Brice Ammar-Khodja
Capturing the residual energy: Brice Ammar-Khodja, Didier Bouchon, Matthew Halpenny, Raphaëlle Kerbrat, Asa Perlman, Philippe Vandal
Light design: Annie Leuridan with the collaboration of Louise Rustan
Computer programming: Didier Bouchon
Overseeing the production of the work and its spatial installation: Lucile Vareilles
Technical support for production and/or editing: Théo Chauvirey, Corentin Loubet, Joséphine Mas, Simon Paugoy.

Documentation team
Images : Brice Ammar-Khodja, Pierre Bouchilloux, Alain Declercq, Thomas Vauthier
Sound : Arnaud Pichon
Editing : Alain Declercq

This project, combining design, art, techno sciences, and media studies, is co-developed as part of an international collaboration between three research-creation teams (Concordia University, Montreal; EnsadLab - the École nationale supérieure des Arts Décoratifs laboratory – Université PSL; University of Toronto Mississauga). The project, co-directed by Alice Jarry (Concordia University), Marie-Pier Boucher (University of Toronto Mississauga), and Samuel Bianchini (EnsadLab / Reflective Interaction and Chair in Arts and Sciences), received support from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), the Chair in Arts and Sciences of the École polytechnique, the École des Arts Décoratifs - PSL, the Daniel and Nina Carasso Foundation, Hexagram – international network of research-creation in art, culture, and technology, and Concordia University's Milieux Institute for art, culture, and technology. The project was developped for the “Matières d'image” exhibit as part of the 2021 Hors Pistes Festival, curated by Géraldine Gomez.

Blob Detection (2020)
Artwork and experimentations by Brice Ammar-Khodja