Grantees of the 2018 Hexagram competition

With the help of student grants, Hexagram wishes to provide concrete support to the research of its student members. Added to this is access to state-of-the-art infrastructure and equipment, integration into the governance of its network, and training.

This year again, about fifty projects were analyzed by a jury of members-researchers and an external expert. We thank the many candidates who submitted a project and we also thank the members of the 2018 jury: Louis-Claude Paquin, president, Rilla Khaled, Armando Menicacci and Katja Melzer, collaborating member and director of the Goethe Institute Montreal.

It is therefore with pleasure that we present here the list of projects that will receive a scholarship from Hexagram this year.

Research-creation Master
Marc-André Cossette UQAM
Sami Zenderoudi Concordia
Peter van Haaften Université de Montréal
Geneviève LeGuerrier-Aubry UQAM
Maize Longboat Concordia
Internationalization Master
Agustina Isidori Concordia
Ahreum Lee Concordia
Research-creation Ph.D.
Ida Toft Concordia
Alexandre Saunier Concordia
Enric Granzotto Llagostera Concordia
Olivia McGilchrist Concordia
Gilles Tassé UQAM
Darian Stahl Concordia
Performative research Ph.D.
Antonia Hernandez Concordia
Agathe François Université de Montréal
Émilie St-Hilaire Concordia
Internationalization Ph.D.
Aurelio Meza Valdez Concordia


Mon sujet de recherche comporte deux volets : l’embodiment dans le traitement de capture de mouvement et la compréhension des qualias de mouvement et l’agentivité matériel dans la composition de son et de lumière par algorithmie générative.

Le projet visé par la bourse consiste à la création d’une pièce de danse contemporaine improvisée d’une durée d’environ 30 minutes avec une seule interprète sur scène. L’interprète est équipée de capteurs qui envoient en temps réel les données de mouvement à un ordinateur. Ces données sont alors traitées selon de façon à les traduire en quantités et en qualité de mouvement. Le système autonome décide ensuite, en fonction du type de mouvement reconnu dans la danse, de l’ambiance sonore et visuelle à diffuser afin de créer des tableaux avec l’interprète.



Absence is short fiction film project to be shot digitally. Surveying the metaphysical relationship between human and nonhuman lifeforms, Absence tells the parallel story of an old-growth forest undergoing climatic change and a young street artist mourning the loss of her close friend.

My research‐creation conducts an ecocritical investigation of contemporary works that inform human-centered understandings of nature. Frame in the field of environmental phenomenology, which strives to uncover the ontological roots of our ethical and metaphysical understandings of the natural environment (Thompson, 2004), my thesis asks: how does cinematic language portray nature in contemporary examples of fictional ecocinema? What phenomenological constructs of nature can be drawn from these films? How may these perspectives inform consciousness of the natural world?

« Coil Cascade »

« Coil Cascade » is a performance that exploits the potential of everyday vibrating matter as potential compositional process. Across 20 minutes, the common coil spring is transformed into an expressive and continuously responsive instrument. I give precedence to dynamic processes to deconstruct the relationships between human and non-human agency in performance.

Inspired by John Cages’ and Iannis Xenakis’ aleatoric compositions, I investigate how chance procedures can be derived from the stochastic nature of matter itself. How can movement influence compositional systems from a material-computation perspective? I build poly rhythmic forms that contort in time with the natural envelope of the spring. I shape sound through material process as it modulates to harmonic spring motion. Coil Cascade is a speculative vision of a possible future where matter is fundamentally intertwined with computation to create responsive and playful real-world environments disconnected from technical abstractions (screens and knobs).


« Aquaphonie »

« Aquaphonie » est une installation interactive sonore où l’être humain, les plantes, les poissons, le son, l’eau, l’information, le mouvement, la musique et l’interactivité sont en relation. Notre projet veut favoriser la création, l’utilisation et la diffusion d’une technologie qui intègre la transmission des sons dans un système aquaponique. L’objet de cette recherche-création est d’explorer les techniques et les influences de la musique électroacoustique dans un système aquaponique : système agricole hors-sol. Cette recherche-création a été émise grâce aux recherches et à la lecture d’une littérature scientifique et artistique publiée ces dernières années sur l’influence de l’électricité, des champs électromagnétiques et des vibrations sonores sur différents organismes vivants et dans l’eau. Aujourd’hui, les outils interactifs sonores pour les plantes sont inexistants, nous envisageons donc de concevoir et réaliser un outil de design sonore interactif pour la culture aquaponique.


Playing Indians: Indigenous Self-Representation and Videogame Development

Increasingly, Indigenous peoples are utilizing videogames as a communicative medium to strengthen their communities. Game development practices that stem directly from Indigenous-led initiatives are foundational to the movement of Indigenous self-representation in visual media, in that they incorporate creative practices that uphold cultural traditions within a contemporary context while also affirming the vitality of Indigenous futures.

My research will assess the current state of Indigenous-determined videogame design and development to ground hypotheses on how it will develop over the coming decades. Conclusions from this research will then directly inform the development of my own independently published Indigenous-determined videogame as a robust contribution to the growing field. This study will provide guidance for Indigenous-identified media creators who are contemplating or already exploring videogame creation, while also supporting a future where Indigenous peoples can continue to make games on their own terms.

Conference / Exhibition Arsgames – Barcelona

I was invited to participate and exhibit my video game project « SOLA » within the context of an event hosted by Arsgames focused on “Gender and Video Games”. Arsgames ( is a cultural association based in Barcelona that promotes creative projects related to video game culture. My Master of Design project is focused on an interdisciplinary approach to curate subjects related to violence against women, with special attention paid to the extreme case of feminicide in Latin America. Feminicide is the ultimate link of a long chain of violence entrenched in the mindset of a system that supports and perpetuates violence through omission and impunity. As researchers, designers and artists, we need to work collectively to unfold a new rhetoric able to reach the core of the problem and find the place in which these structures are being fed and reproduced.

Tangled Words

Tangled Words is a video series on the relationship of body, identities, and spaces. This project will be presented at “In Motion: Performance and Unsettling Borders” conference and festival on April 27th to 29th. Northwestern University hosts the event. Exhibitions will be held at Axis Lab in downtown Chicago and exhibition spaces on campus.

My research and stiudio practice are rooted on writers such as Gisook Choi, Barbara Creed, and Jean-Paul Sartre. Choi is a Korean philosopher who studies the representation of females in East Asian folklore and popular culture. Choi posits that ghosts are refugees. They live on the boundaries between life and death, displaced and voiceless. What we fear manifests itself in our ghost stories. Creed has done similar work examining female representation within the western framework. Sartre’s concept of the gaze of others inspired me to explore how displaced people such as refugees are simultaneously invisible yet are constantly feel exposed to the gaze of people.


I study vibration patterns and tactile interfaces in a context of computational sculptures and interactive systems. In particular, I am exploring the space between multiplayer game systems and alien agents as a way of investigating aesthetic and social features of system behavior.

The distinction between game systems and alien agents comes from my research creation practice in which pure and impure technologies represent contrasting system characteristics. Pure technology covers, for instance, game systems where there is a clear and consistent connection between players behavior and the system’s behavior. In such systems, the presence of other players within a system can be felt across distributed locations (e.g. the online version of Journey, video game). On the other hand, I associate impure technology with alien agents, in which the system contains noise, bugs, mathematical probabilities or material inconsistencies which makes the system behavior indeterminate and unpredictable.


Lumière performative (LP)

Lumière performative (LP) est un projet doctoral de recherche-création s’intéressant à l’impact de l’innovation technologique récente sur les performances artistiques de lumière. Ces évolutions matérielles et logicielles ouvrent de nouvelles façons de concevoir la lumière et son interprétation live. En permettant un contrôle temporel fin et rapide, des progressions dynamiques complexes, et en facilitant le contrôle en temps réel, les nouvelles technologies d’éclairage LED et de programmation informatique appellent de nouvelles conceptions théoriques, esthétiques, artistiques, et instrumentales de la lumière. Elles donnent en particulier à en explorer les dimensions temporelles et performatives jusqu’ici négligées au profit de sa dimension spatiale.


« Cook Your Way »: political games, alternative controllers and player creation

Cook Your Way is a game discussing the experience of migrants with oppressive immigration systems. The game features a custom controller aimed at provoking reflection and resources for players to create their own controllers and stories.

My approach to this research topic involves making alternative game controllers and games around them, with a focus on creating games as a form of political action against different forms of oppression. To achieve this goal, I explore a variety of design strategies for fostering reflectivity and critical thinking through game design and circulation. This research is based on thorough documentation and iterative methodologies for the design processes of the games created, including the consideration and elaboration of relevant circulation strategies for such games.


‘ I (-S-) LAND’

‘ I (-S-) LAND’ : a non-linear sequence of real and virtual encounters between users and a cast of hybridcharacters, living across an archipelago of imaginary islands. The characters appear on the islands as composite sequences blending 360 video and a 3D landscape created using photogrammetry or videogrammetry.

Visually and thematically, I’m looking at submersion and performance art as immersive platforms on the threshold of contemplative experience and embodied interaction, at the intersection of spaces for high art and popular entertainment. Conceptually and theoretically I’m concerned with new forms of performed and enacted storytelling and how these can subvert racial, social and gender-based categorization, classification and discrimination from non-Western spaces like the contemporary Caribbean and its global diaspora.


Visite virtuelle du Vieux Séminaire de Saint-Sulpice.

Production d’un film immersif en 3D sur l’édifice historique du Vieux-Montréal. Le film sera navigable à l’aide d’une interface répondant au regard du spectateur. Huit points d’observation permettront l’exploration virtuelle et la perception enactive du Vieux Séminaires.

Les capacités audiovisuelles et interactives des nouveaux casques de réalité virtuelle soutiennent une production croissante et variée d’œuvres immersives. Des documentaires immersifs sont maintenant présentés à la fois par les plus importantes institutions médiatiques traditionnelles (The New York Times, Le Monde, CNN, BBC News, etc.) et par les plateformes de partage de vidéo sur le Web (YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, etc.). En tant que chercheur et documentariste, je désire évaluer les capacités d’engagement et de communication de ce nouveau dispositif documentaire qui place le spectateur au centre de l’espace médiatisé


Healing Houses

“Healing Houses” The “Healing Houses” are multi-sensory architectural structures that will be installed in the waiting rooms of medical clinics. The purpose of these fine art homes is to better communicate and embody the patient experience and create an opportunity for wellness and wonder in the normative hospital setting.

My research is motivated by the desire to understand how our sense of self has been transformed as a result of our entanglements with biomedical imaging technologies. It is also guided by the ethical desire to instigate meaningful collaborations with those whose subjectivities are being shaped by the experience of illness; and finally, to see what role aesthetics can play to foster collaborations between art and medicine in the clinic. Finally, I aim to show how interdisciplinary research-creation can allow for an empathetic exchange between an ableist society and those who live with bodily unease or impairment.


Maintenance Class

« Maintenance Class » is a performative-research project and an crucial component of my PhD investigation. It investigates work in the context of a platform economy by looking into an online commercial sex platform. One hypothesis that drives this investigation is that techno-capitalist structures are embodied through maintenance practices, which are overlooked by definition. This research will explore maintenance practices on the aforementioned platform that are constantly interweaved with sexual spectacles. The stress on these practices, my research argues, will give a new insight into the life of the precarious worker. To explore the maintenance practices of the precarious worker, I have been invited as a fellow researcher at the Institute of Network Cultures (INC), in Amsterdam (Fall 2018), under the supervision of Geert Lovink.


Des corps post-humains : une expérimentation trans-individuelle et machinique.

Partant du constat que la majorité de la littérature sur le post-humain se cantonne en effet à des analyses émanant d’un prisme humain individué, je compte plutôt me demander ce que seraient les corps post-humains s’ils étaient envisagés de manière trans-individuelle et du point de vue de la machine.

Le résultat sera une écriture créative sur les corps post-humains, grâce à une recherche trans-individuelle et à la génération de textes du point de vue de la machine. Cette création sera incluse dans ma thèse et publiée.

Self-Representation in the Reborn Community

For this portion of my doctoral research I will work with participants attending a doll show for reborn dolls – they are hyper-realistic representations of babies. My approach will employ community-based participatory research with photography (“photovoice”) and writing. This research will provide a thorough analysis of reborns, a phenomenon which currently lacks both quantitative and qualitative data (Nakamura 2007; White 2015). I am combining ethnographic research methods with performance studies, to create a framework with an emphasis on embodiment, enactment, and community. This research will enable me to gain insight into performances of motherhood amid an active group of reborn enthusiasts.


Writing Sound: Building a Digital Repository for Latin American Sound Art

« Writing Sound: Building a Digital Repository for Latin American Sound Art » will be presented at the 2018 Annual Meeting of the American Comparative Literatura Association at the University of California, Los Angeles (‐meeting) from March 29 to April 1st.

In this paper I will focus on the intersections of sound and legibility, one of PoéticaSonora’s ( many research topics, to discuss the sound poetics behind Voz Viva de México, one the longest-running literary audio collections in Latin America.


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