Unsettled Practices: Art as a navigational tool in the uncharted Anthropocene

By Gabriel Deerman & Ana MacArthur


Friday July 29
18:20 – 19:30

Unsettled Practices: Art as a navigational tool in the uncharted Anthropocene
How do artists navigate the complex and entangled issues that continue to unfold as we become more aware of the consequences of human activity in this time increasingly referred to as the Anthropocene? Ana MacArthur and Gabriel Deerman are visual artists working with similar issues of relationships with and within the natural or nonhuman world while utilizing radically different strategies and approaches. Simon Pope will moderate this discussion and brings with him his own background, which engages similar concerns through social practice.

Deerman’s body of work Pastoral/Counter Pastoral applies combinatorial methodologies to the tradition of landscape painting- an age old tradition turned on its head by contemporary factors such as globalization and climate change. MacArthur’s body of workRewilding the Practice focuses on collaboration with a scientist and non-human/animal, while reflecting on extinction, energy use, interspecies relationships, and collaboration as a means to unexpected solution.


GABRIEL DEERMAN (1979, Bolinas, California, USA) has a practice that is largely grounded in picture making, but recent forays into sculpture, visual manipulation through optical devices and installation are leading steadily away from disciplinary categorization. Deerman’s work engages issues unique to the particularly liminal nature of the present due to globalization and climate triggered cultural and scientific re-assessments of human relationships to time and place. Deerman is currently completing his MFA from Transart Institute (New York / Berlin), holds a BFA from the Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver, British Columbia and has recently returned to Canada after four years of teaching art in Qatar.

Gabriel was the owner/director of independent arts venues in Vancouver and Montreal and is currently working towards launching Salmon River Studios— a not for profit educational art studio at his farm in Ontario.





ANA MACARTHUR‘strans-disciplinary practice explores the cross-pollination among her investigation of light with environmental concerns, scientific knowledge, and the possibility to educate towards transformation. Many of her projects have evolved from collaborations with scientists and environmental fieldwork, investigating light’s role in photosynthesis, climate change, and biological intelligence…seminally explored in her Amazon Rainforest project. In the mid 80’s, MacArthur was a key member of an international set of artists working around the New York City Museum of Holography. From 1988 – 2004 she pioneered in and co-founded one of the few dichromate holography labs.

MacArthur has exhibited internationally with her works in private and public collections such as the MIT Museum, Cambridge, the Museum of Holography, New York, The Intercommunications Center, Tokyo, and The Sharjah Arts Museum, Sharjah. MacArthur was selected for a Pilchuck PAiR residency and chosen as participant in a panel on climate change at The Arts Catalyst, London.