sarah peebles, laurence packer, rob king: pollination ecology

biological research, eco-art, subtle technologies — By on April 29, 2010 at 5:12 pm

subtle technologies presentation

‘Resonating Bodies – Bumble Domicile’ was the first of a series of art installations and projects focusing on biodiversity of bees indigenous to the Greater Toronto Area. Bumble Domicile highlighted distinct features of local bumble bees through an observation hive, garden, visual and audio transformations, scent, touch, and biological information. Created by artists Sarah Peebles, Rob King, Rob Cruickshank and Anne Barros in collaboration with Canadian and U.S. biologists, the installation premiered at Toronto’s *new* gallery in 2008. We will discuss our collaborative process, how research on bee biology, pathogen transmission and pollination ecology informed the project, how bumble bee health issues presented us with challenges, and ongoing Resonating Bodies works.


Sarah Peebles is a Toronto-based American composer, improviser and installation artist. Much of her work explores alternative performance settings and found sound manipulated via computer and physical objects, often combined with shô (Japanese mouth-organ). She has performed and exhibited worldwide, and has collaborated with a wide range of musicians and artists. New ongoing work includes “Resonating Bodies”, a series of collaborations with artists, designers and bee biologists which focuses on biodiversity of pollinators indigenous to the Greater Toronto Area. Her music is available on a number of audio and video publications.

Laurence Packer is a Melittologist. COSEWIC member. On faculty at York since 1988 where he teaches biodiversity and related subjects. Has authored >100 research articles on bees and has a book on them published by Harper Collins. His research has been funded by NSERC, National Geographic, Genome Canada.

Rob King is a New Media artist, visualist, programmer and researcher based in Toronto, Ontario. He has a MA from the Communications and Culture joint graduate program at Ryerson and York Universities and a BFA in Image Arts: New Media from Ryerson University. His work explores the social dynamics of networked spaces, the potentials of mobile and ubiquitous computing, dynamic and generative processes, intellectual property issues, and system theory. Rob is currently developing visuals for networked performance as the COMEDIA artist in residence at the Sonic Arts Research Center at Queen’s University in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

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