Terrestrial/ Celestial

Relational performance/ photographs
Toronto and Vancouver region, 2009-2010


I coordinated an exchange of terrestrial knowledge for celestial knowledge between amateur mycologists and astronomers. First the mushroomers hosted the astronomers on an afternoon foray to collect and identify fungus species. In the evening, the astronomers hosted the mushroomers to look through telescopes at the sun, stars, planets, and satellites. The exchange took place first at a personal scale in Toronto in 2009, and then as a major event in Maple Ridge BC, with the participation of the Vancouver Mycological Society and the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (Vancouver Centre) in May 2010.

Mycology is visceral, it relies on all our immediate and proximal senses, and it is concerned with the fecund and ephemeral. It exists in a time scale of seasons, and of hours, as things can decay and dissolve before you even empty your basket. The practice of astronomy requires amazing feats of conceptualization and imagination. It’s concerned with the elemental and the other worldly, and things exist at distances, in numbers, and in time scales that exceed comprehension. Both practices are much assisted by a range of technical devices from microscopes to telescopes, and by enthusiastic teachers who can animate everything from tiny spores to a speck of distant light.

Thank you to Kirith and Xavier Borsato for lessons in astronomy in Toronto in 2009. Thank you also to Howard Trottier, Wayne Lyons, Daryl Thompson, Juliet Pendray and the participating members of the Vancouver Mycological Society and the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (Vancouver Centre).

Exhibition History
  • AGYU, Terrestrial / Celestial and Walking Studio, curated by Emelie Chhangur , Spring 2012, Toronto
  • Articule Gallery, Terrestrial/Celestial, Presented as part of Mois de la Photo, curated by Anne-Marie Ninacs, Fall 2011, Montreal, Canada
  • Access Gallery, Field Work, Terrestrial / Celestial event with the Vancouver Mycological Society, and the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (Vancover)., Curated by Shaun Dacey, Spring 2010, Vancouver
  • Mercer Union, The Chinatown Foray, Solo exhibition, main space, Fall 2009, Toronto