Malacosoma disstria

installation with video projection (5min25 loop) & video/specimen table (3min44 loop)

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Malacosoma disstria (I and II) is part of an ongoing collaboration with the Concordia University entomology lab, which studies and researches the forest tent caterpillar. First exhibited in 2013, a large video projection documents the various stages of the M. disstria life cycle and highlights its repetitive and circular nature. A small desk with embedded petri dishes filled with specimens and parts counterbalances the projection’s extreme magnifications.  Beneath them, video reveals manipulations by both scientist and animator with reenactments of dissection and wing removal, and stop motion fantasies of resistance. The work was initially inspired by Brakhage’s Mothlight (1963), but after Dr. Jessica Ethier taught me about the insects she raised from egg to moth and the care they required, I shifted my focus from reanimating the dead towards a documentation of her insects (and significantly her caterpillars) as living and future-oriented beings.

Watch the Malacosoma Disstria projected video

Watch the table documentation (photo by Guy L’Heureux)

De la nature group exhibition,
with Kelly Andres, Brandon Ballengée, Claire Kenway, curated by Anne-Marie Belley
Galerie les Territoires, Montreal 18 Jan – 23 Feb 2013

Made in collaboration with Jessica Ethier at the Concordia University Entomology Lab (Dr. Emma Despland) and Communication Studies Fluxmedia Lab (Dr. Tagny Duff).

Presented at Re-Defining Animation, Society for Animation Studies Annual Conference, June 2013.
Associated article: “Re: Animating Moths.” Animation Studies Online Journal, 9.