De Souche Workshop Series – March-May 2021

Can designing with an invasive species build new ecological sensibilities?

Directed by new BioLab member Thomas Heinrich and Lab associate Larissa Zemke — supervised by BioLab director Alice Jarry — De Souche is an experimental biomaterial project that seeks to transform the invasive aquatic plant Eurasian milfoil into a material that can benefit communities affected by its spread. 

A series of participatory workshops in the spring of 2021 will reinforce the material research process of this biomaterial. The series will kick-start in March with first co-creation workshop with community members from Lake Lovering (Qc), followed by a public discussion in April, and workshops oriented towards the Concordia community in May.

This methodology, intermeshing community participation material research, will serve both educational and pragmatic purposes. This framework creates a platform for participants to consider the meaning of invasive species in anthropogenic landscapes and to consider their potential for new cultural objects. Engagement with prejudiced material will encourage a paradigm shift concerning the affective quality of materials and the division between human life and the rest of the biosphere. Through a practical lens, the development of biomaterials with invasive species can make use of abundant sources of biomass to transform a negative phenomenon into a positive one for communities.

The issue of Eurasian milfoil highlights a cultural, even existential gap in the perception of our relationship to the environment. The purpose of De Souche is to consider design as a medium through which to produce a cultural shift at a local scale, reinforced by institutional collaboration.

De Souche is supported by the Sustainability Action Fund (SAF) and the Fine Arts Student Alliance (FASA).

Further info: thomasheinrich07@gmail.com

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s