12 Hours – Avatar | Are – Sommes Sonnes | Broadcast Presentation of Live Performance Art

December 12 2023 / 9:00am - 9:00pm

12 HOURS | BROADCAST PRESENTATION — Free | All Ages | Public | Simple Hospitality 

Commissaires: Myriam Lambert, Christof Migone et Alexandre St-Onge
Presented by Québec’s Avatar Centre

A day of real-time performance art by international artists will be live-streamed from Québec and presented at the Comox Valley Art Gallery as well as other international broadcast locations.
The community is invited to come for the duration or drop-in anytime between 9AM – 9PM Pacific Standard Time | Tuesday, December 12.

CVAG Window + Plaza Media Gallery — Outdoor seating with propane fire pits on CVAG Plaza

CVAG Hub | SHOP:MADE — Limited indoor seating 


Are – Sommes Sonnes translates from the French simply to ‘are sounds’. This theme, which conjures up plurals: multiplicities leading to infinities, polymorphs and polyglots, surrounded sounds, layers upon layers, etceteras upon etceteras, was envisaged with Myriam Lambert and Alexandre St-Onge, who join me as curators of this edition.

After learning about all the steps involved in making whisky during a three-month artist residency with Marla Hlady at the Glenfiddich Distillery in Scotland in the summer of 2019 it struck me how inadequate the word ‘whisky’ (root meaning: ‘alcohol – water of life’) is because it only captures a small part of the manufacturing process. The resulting expanded 12-word sentence, You And I Are Water Earth Fire Air Of Life And Death, has evolved into a 12-year long project, each year focusses on one word of the sentence and manifests into a yearly 12-hour event on December 12 from noon to midnight.

So far, three events have taken place: You (2020), And (2021), I (2022). This year: Are (2023). The project has morphed from a modest 12-word text piece to a sprawling curatorial endeavor featuring 79 artists from 11 countries across 5 continents (including this year). Thus far the event has happened primarily as an online stream (audio + video), last year the last 3 hours were also live in person at Arraymusic in Toronto. This year there will be 6 hours presented live. The event will be held in Québec City and Avatar will be the main host institution. This year the entire 12 hours will live streamed as per usual, but the whole event will be screened at the Cinéma Beaumont in Québec City’s Méduse complex for free. As a founding member of Avatar I’m extremely pleased that the event will be held at Méduse (where Avatar is located), especially given the fact that the organization is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year.

As mentioned, this year the word is ‘Are’, consequently the focus will be on plurals: multiplicities leading to infinities, polymorphs and polyglots, surrounded sounds, layers upon layers, etceteras upon etceteras. New this year is the inclusion of a subtitle: (Sommes Sonnes)—this translates from the French simply to ‘are sounds’. Also new this year, Myriam Lambert and Alexandre St-Onge are joining the project on the curatorial side.

The first year it started with ‘You’, then in 2021  ‘And’ came to connect you to anything and everything, and last year that point of connection was ‘I’—the porous one, the sole collective. This year with ‘Are’ action enters the fray. What are you and I to do? What are you up to? Well, let’s begin with being, simply being, however tenuous or contentious that may be. ‘Are’ points to fact, to status, but it also suggests question marks, suggests that the known might not always be as it seems.

Overall, the curatorial premise is intentionally left open as to how the theme is interpreted. Heterogenous experimentation is encouraged. The process is a conversation.

Each year artists and institutional partners are invited to participate. Usually each partnership entails programming one of the twelve hours and providing artist fees, consulting on the curatorial aspect, and spreading the word once the event lineup is confirmed and the promotional material is available. The project’s structure intends to remain nimble and stay as decentralized as possible. What is ‘usual’ is adaptable. Each partnership is unique. – Christof Migone

Click here to watch on YouTube Live.

Note: There is a three hour time difference between Québec and Vancouver Island (12PM – 12 AM there is 9AM – 9PM here)

Click here to follow Avatar on Facebook.


HOUR 1 | 9AM

Serie One — Tanya Mars | Ronnie Clark | Olga Prokhorova | Liina Kuittinen 
Presented by Fado

Tanya Mars is a feminist performance and video artist who has been involved in the Canadian art scene since 1973. She was a founding member and director of Powerhouse Gallery (La Centrale) in Montreal (the first women’s art gallery in Canada), editor of Parallelogramme magazine for 13 years, and very active in ANNPAC (the Association of National Non-Profit Artist-run Centres) for 15 years. She is the recipient of a 2008 Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts. A  book on her work published by FADO and edited by Paul Couillard, Ironic to Iconic: The Performance Works of Tanya Mars, was launched in May of 2008. In the 70s and 80s Mars’ work focused on creating spectacular feminist imagery that placed women at the centre of the narrative.

Ronnie Clarke is a Black and queer emerging artist living and working in Toronto, Ontario. Her work blends elements of choreography, dance, movement, collaboration, video and installation. With an interest in the poetics of digital gestures, spaces and interfaces, she often uses movement to investigate how technology plays a role in our interactions with others. She holds a BFA from The University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario.

Olga Prokhorova is a performance artist living and working in Oulu, Finland. In her art she establishes presence at the place and works through the study of body, movement, and behavior, creating a visual phenomenon – alternative situations that people can observe. Prokhorova’s works have been seen internationally in Sweden, Norway, Estonia, Russia, and Mexico.

Liina Kuittinen is a visual artist with background in fine arts, working mainly in the field of performance art. Her work has been shown in the context of festivals and events but also in galleries and on instagram. Kuittinen received her MA in fine arts at the Fine Arts Academy in Helsinki, Finland in 2017.

HOUR 2 | 10AM

@c — Pedro Tudela, Miguel Carvalhais + Rodrigo Carvalho
Presented by Cronica

Pedro Tudela and Miguel Carvalhais collaborate as @c since 2000. They release and perform extensively, and work on sound installations, often collaborating with other artists in a practice marked by radical experimentation with computational sound. In 2003 they established Crónica, a label they since run. In this performance, they were accompanied by Rodrigo Carvalho on light design, programming and performance, and Patrícia Viana de Almeida, on video and cinematography.

HOUR 3 | 11AM

Kelly Ruth — Threads of a Future Not Yet Woven
Presented by NAISA

Kelly Ruth is a new media artist currently living in Treaty 6, Edmonton, Canada. She has been activating her textiles and tools through using electronics, sound, and integrating microcontrollers into the foundations of her woven cloth. In performance she uses contact microphones and effects pedals on her weaving loom and other fibre related tools. Most recently she has been researching and creating art in a virtual world.

Threads of a Future Not Yet Woven
Performing at NAISA in person and in a space designed and built by the artist within a social perpetual virtual world, she uses her weaving loom as an instrument of sound. Using contact microphones and effects pedals she creates music that evokes histories past and future.

HOUR 4 | 12PM

Agnès Pe + Milo Thesiger-Meacham — Are we human or are we dancers
Presented by Resonance Extra

Agnès Pe (1985) is a teacher, researcher, producer and self-taught musicologist. She is interested in the exception, in everything that touches the social margins, with a special focus on the generative environment of sound content through the internet (prosumers), such as remix and cut up. She currently lives and works in Barcelona; she hosts the radio programme Shuffle at Resonance Extra and collaborates with the Reina Sofía Museum radio.

Milo Thesiger–Meacham‘s work combines sound, musical composition, text, visual material and performance. He has worked on solo and ensemble projects for Tate Modern, The V&A Museum, the European Capital of Culture, London Fashion Week, The Centre for Contemporary Arts Glasgow, Radiophrenia, Cafe Oto, Iklectik, the Jerwood Foundation, the European Poetry Festival, Radio Revolten, the IvyNODE/Tierra Vivente residency, and Echoraeume, among others. He is the manager and curator of Resonance Extra, an international arts radio station.

Are we human or are we dancers
It’s the cloud, it’s the preferences. They are your predictions. They come from possible search terms that relate to what you are looking for and what other people have already searched for. It’s a kind of seer. Surfing the Web requires a particularly intensive form of mental multitasking. In addition to flooding our working memory with information, the juggling imposes what neurologists call “switching costs” on our cognition. As Maggie Jackson explains in Distracted, her book on multitasking, “the brain takes time to switch targets, remember the rules necessary for the new task, and block out the cognitive interference of the still-living activity that was occupying it”.

HOUR 5 | 1PM

Maud Joiret, Alexandre Berthier + Catherine Bélanger
Presented by Rhizome

Maud Joiret was born in 1986 in Brussels. Poet and performer (on stage + on video + sometimes in front of a camera), she is also a columnist. She has professionally supported Belgian authors on the site for ten years and continues to convey texts and voices, through articles, participation in juries, sharing of enthusiasm in literary programming, hosting meetings and on social networks. In 2023, she will also give lessons as part of a workshop at La Cambre for students of the Master in Texts and Literary Creation. Cobalt , his first collection of poetry (editions Tétras-lyre), received the prize for the first work from the Wallonia-Brussels Federation in 2020 and was adapted into video. His second book, JERK , published in 2022 by l’Arbre de Diane, was brought to the stage in a form that combines text, music and dance. She is also published in magazines and anthologies in Belgium, France and Mexico.

Since 2004, Alexandre Berthier’s artistic practice has evolved in three fields: visual arts, media arts and performing arts, mostly in collaboration with other artists. His main collaboration has been with artist Karl-Otto von Oertzen, under the duo Marswalkers, for over ten years. Their work has been presented at CIANT (Prague), The Public (Birmingham), Wimbledon School of Art (London), Rockport Center for Contemporary Art (USA), l’Œil de Poisson (Québec), TUPAC (Peru), 6ème manifestation internationale vidéo et art électronique de Montréal, Mois Multi 12, BANG (Chicoutimi), and Espace F (Matane), among others. As a solo artist, Alexandre Berthier develops his personal practice of video, sound and photography. His work has been shown at the following festivals: Mois Multi (Quebec), Bains Numériques (Paris), Nouveau Cinéma (Montréal), Sounds like (Saskatoon).

Catherine Bélanger lives and works in Quebec City. She holds a bachelor’s degree in visual arts and an interdisciplinary master’s degree in art from Université Laval. Her creative research focuses on encounters and gifts, and explores the intangible heritage of everyday rituals and the desire to preserve them. His work mainly takes the form of animation, video and digital and interactive installations. Her work has been presented in the metaverse by the Ellipse platform in 2023, at Mois Multi, Quebec City’s international multidisciplinary and electronic arts festival in 2023 and 2017, at La Centrale Powerhouse in Montreal in 2019, at the Musée de la Civilisation in Quebec City in 2016, and at the Bangkok art and culture center (BACC) in Bangkok in 2015. In addition, she has participated in various individual and collective events since 1997, in France, Montreal, Quebec City and the surrounding region. She is currently collaborating on transdisciplinary research on culinary gesture and movement with the Université des technologies de Belfort-Montbéliard in France, as well as with the Centre de recherche en intelligence numérique in Matane and various technical partners and artist-run centers in Quebec City. Her research has been supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, the Fédération des Cégep du Québec and Première Ovation. Since 2004, she has also taught visual arts at Cégep Limoilou.

HOUR 6 | 2PM

David B. Ricard — Nous sommes sommes aléatoires | Serie One — Nadège Grebmeier Forget
Presented by Spira + Antitube

David B. Ricard, a Quebec-based multidisciplinary artist, works across video, theater, film, and performance. His documentary focus lies in the introspective power of cinematic recording, exploring intimate and everyday themes while valuing intuition and spontaneity. As a theater designer and performer, he blends improvised image manipulation with performance, creating a videostage experience that merges video with bodies, voices, music, and diverse languages, promoting interartistic explorations.

Nous sommes sommes aléatoires
This solo performance is fundamentally based on the principle of chance. The artist employs a device that simultaneously broadcasts excerpts from films sourced from the Spira and Vidéo Femmes catalogues. Live, they handle the switching, mixing, and analog effects, orchestrating a blend of images and sounds aimed at unveiling unexpected contrasts or synchronicities. At the heart of this performance, the exploration of the unpredictable takes center stage. Chance dictates the progression of each sequence. The artist doesn’t directly control the displayed images, but adapts his actions based on the randomly generated selections. This artistic approach highlights the creativity that can spring from the meeting of chaos and structure, merging visuals and audios. The synthesis produced by the performance stands as a kind of collective work, straddling the line between cinema and video performance, offering a unique experience that celebrates the art of randomness and spontaneous creation.

Nadège Grebmeier Forget (Montreal, QC) is an interdisciplinary artist, best known for her live and private durational performances. She critically reflects on the medium, questioning its presentation devices, documentation, and the potential of its mediation. Her work is influenced by feminisms, her own body and personal psyche as mediums of observation, research, and transformation.

HOUR 7 | 3PM

Alexandre St-Onge — Confessions Augmentées | Serie One — Adriana Disman
Presented by Université Laval

Alexandre St-Onge is an intermedia artist and sonic performer exploring the mutation of the performative body through its sonic, textual, and visual mediations. A doctor of philosophy (PhD) in art (UQAM, 2015) and assistant professor at the École d’art of Laval University, he is fascinated by creativity as a pragmatic approach to the ungraspable. He has published over twenty works and presented his work nationally and internationally.

Confessions Augmentées is a performative talk presented in an installation that allows the process of creating Confessions to be approached from various perspectives. Confessions is both a publication project consisting of a book, sound works, and a video-performance launched on June 21, 2022 and a series of modular and performative sound rituals, segments of which have been reorganized spatially and temporally depending on the venue. One of the project’s aims is to examine whether it can mutate by reorganizing its materials in time and adapting them to different spaces. Another is to observe whether another entity can emerge from this process and whether some relic of the artifact called Confessions can survive despite its permeability to the various contexts in which it occurs.

Adriana Disman is a performance art maker, thinker, and writer. Since 2010, their performance work has been presented in festivals and galleries across Canada, the United States, Europe, and India. Disman’s writing on self-wounding in performance can be found in both academic and arts publications. Of late,
they’ve turned their attention towards writing a novel on housing precarity and obsession, for which they are seeking agent representation.

HOUR 8 | 4PM

Myriam Lambert — Contacts
Presented by Rad’Art

Myriam Lambert explores the theme of identity and core values through sound art, electronic art, relational art, installation, video, performance, and literature, using the most applicable medium to create artivist works that reflect the poetry of the everyday. Lambert has presented her work in many art centres, museums, and sites of memory in Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Spain, France, Italy, Mexico, and Switzerland. Actively involved in artist-run centres in Québec since 2003, Lambert is presently the General and Artistic Director of Avatar. She lives and works in Quebec City.

What forges Being, in the singular and plural? A mass of encounters between people, situations, places, contexts, things, images, sounds… magnetic contacts between ourselves and everything else. With this performance, I want to play with this point of contact, this fine line that makes us, that connects us to these encounters. I therefore propose 58 minutes of context.

In French, Are and Being are homonyms = Être

HOUR 9 | 5PM

Agence Augmentée — Lé, Juan David Molina Velasco + Max St-Pierre | Serie One — Alice De Visscher + Evamaria Schaller
Presented by Université Laval

is a visual artist based in Quebec City. Seeking to deconstruct the musical parameters learned in classical music, they explore sensory, conscious, and personal experiences of sound through performative installations. By exploring the presence of sound, they seek to offer a space of listening into which they can settle and invite others to share the experience.

Juan David Molina Velasco
Originally from Colombia, I was uprooted by violence and learned about my culture of origin through childhood memories and distant stories. I integrated into a new culture and had to learn a new language. I grew up navigating between two worlds, not knowing how to define myself or with what to identify. Between Jonquière and Quebec City, I explored the performing and visual arts at Cégep de l’Outaouais in Gatineau. I received a bachelor’s degree in visual and media arts from Laval University and am currently pursuing my master’s degree in visual arts at the same university. Here is somewhere else. I am not from here but I don’t belong anywhere else.

Max St-Pierre
I am a child of the web born around Y2K. My mother tried for many years to teach me how to knit; I never finished a piece. In 2020, I learned how to crochet from online videos. I like things that are crooked, the word transsexual, and the Windows XP installation music.

I knit because I like doing it, and I archive because it’s all I know how to do. Through a joyously queer practice and my interest in everything about the web, I look for how memory is maintained, preserved, and transmitted. The spaces between memory’s spaces (what we forget) become the raw material out of which I create alternative pasts, infinite presents, and futures that don’t exist.

In the manner of a virtual urban expedition, stitch by stitch I weave my web out of abandoned pages and cover fallen walls with colourful graffiti—a way of saying I am here, I was here, I will always be here. I have tread in your steps.

Agence Augmentée is a research-creation project that focuses on how artistic knowledge emerges by putting into action artistic methods or works and theoretical publications so as to explore different forms of agency. This notion is defined as an entity’s capacity to act and transform or affect the world, things, and beings. Rather than examining agency as a multilateral transformative action of reality and the many entities that constitute it, it is explored by observing whether the interactions between the entities can generate new conceptual or artistic material that exceeds the agents involved. For this iteration, Alexandre St-Onge invited three artists-researchers to address these questions in a unique way.

HOUR 10 | 6PM

Diane Landry — Demi-Lunes
Presented by Avatar

Diane Landry thought she was a painter, but through studio practice and everyday reality, she naturally moved towards the production of installation and performance works influenced by readymade and her preoccupation with recycling. In short, she tinkers, she patents. She likes to put herself in contexts that shake up her creative habits, by doing artist residencies across various cultures. Her works have been widely shown in Canada and abroad.

Two half-moons become extensions of the performer’s body. Two luminous arches move in the space, activated by a woman who rocks and shakes them. The slightest shudder makes a sound, produced by the balls circulating in the tubes of each half-circle. Sometimes, gravity affects the balls and they react with great energy. The half-moons transform into insect, flag, necklace, geometry, pendulum, and almost moon.

HOUR 11 | 7PM

Christof Migone — Poker, Éternuité (Forever Sneeze) + Oreiller (Pillow Talk)
Presented by Avatar

Christof Migone‘s research delves into language & voice, bodies & performance, intimacy & complicity, sound & silence, rhythmics & kinetics, translation & referentiality, stillness & imperceptibility, structure & improvisation, play & pathos, pedagogy & unlearning, failure & endurance. Current and ongoing investigations: microphone hitting, book flipping, tongue extruding, record releasing, word hyphenating, para-pedagogical positioning, careless curating, noise making, sequitur following, paper passing, interval counting, rhythm repeating, phone licking, machine fingering, playlist compiling, silence listening, dozens of dozens, strobosonoscopics and stroboscopsonics.

Two hands holding a variety of microphones scrape, scratch, pinch and poke eleven participants poker-faced in front of the camera. Participants: Katie Bethune-Leamen, crys cole, Michel F. Côté, Anni Lawrence, André Éric Létourneau, Jonathan Parant, Leila Pourtavaf, Sam Shalabi, Marie-Douce St-Jacques, Alexandre St-Onge, Roger Tellier-Craig. Remixed and reedited in 2023.

Éternuité (Forever Sneeze)
The sneeze as an attempt to become eternal. Participants: Sally Baydala, Erica Brisson, Eryn Foster, Stephanie Khoury, Angus Leech, Wm Leler, Demian Petryshyn, Naomi Potter, Don Pyle, Duncan Speakman, Barbara Sutherland, Pandora Syperek, Janice Wu. Remixed and reedited in 2023.

Oreiller (Pillow Talk)
Studies in the convergence between ears and pillows. Participants: Marguerite Arbour, Lé Boucher Trudel, Stéphanie Letarte. Text: Lisa Robertson.

HOUR 12 | 8PM

Serie One — Amélie Laurence Fortin | Georges Azzaria | Caroline Gagné | Jocelyn Robert
Presented by Fado

Currently, Amélie Laurence Fortin divides her time and artistic creativity between Quebec City, Canada, and Warsaw, Poland. Her riveting multidiciplinary body of work has graced numerous solo and group exhibitions, been part of artistic residencies and festivals, and is proudly displayed in both private and public collections across Quebec and Europe.

Georges Azzaria became interested in radio experimentation and then devoted himself to the creation of sound objects. He was part of the Bruit TTV group, was active in the Avatar artist center, presented exhibitions of his instruments and sound performances and produced records as well as soundtracks for films. His recent work touches more directly on the visual arts.

Caroline Gagné‘s work bears witness to a deep commitment to her practice: installations, media art, sound art and video essays form the basis of a multi-faceted artistic journey between digital media and the inescapable necessity of dealing with the materiality of things. Active in her milieu, she was artistic director of the Avatar artist-run center from 2013 to 2019. In 2020, the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal’s national collection will acquire her work Le bruit des icebergs for inclusion in its permanent collection. In 2022, Editions Oboro publishes Caroline Gagné: Donner corps à l’insaisissable / Embodying the Intangible, a retrospective of her artistic career.

Jocelyn Robert is a multidisciplinary artist from Quebec. He works in music, audio art, computer art, performance, installation, video and writing. His visual and video work has been shown internationally and his sound works have been published on more than 30 cds. He is involved in art activism at different levels. Amongst other undertakings, he founded that audio and electronic arts centre Avatar and took part in the foundation of the Meduse cooperative.


Avatar is dedicated to the research, creation, production, dissemination, publication, and circulation of audio and electronic artworks and artists.

To support creation, Avatar organizes projects, invites artists, reflects on practices, and encourages new collaborations through local and international networks. Located in the heart of Québec City, Avatar offers a venue for interactions and initiatives, explores new artistic terrains, and provides access to equipment and specialized skills.

Since its founding in 1993, Avatar has been an innovator in audio and electronic arts research in North America. At Avatar, audio and electronic creation covers a broad range of activities, including the creation of listening devices, the invention and circuit bending of instruments, sound installation, performance, radio art, and sound sculpture. Audio art crosses the fields of music, visual arts, and poetry and is open to hybrid forms of audible performance, sound excavations, and acoustic environments. Avatar also develops programming of custom-made software and electronic interfaces, as well as interactive and kinetic installation systems and telematic works.

Avatar hosts artists, researchers, thinkers, hackers, and students, listening to their needs and adapting itself to support the most unconventional artistic dreams.

Avatar is a member of Méduse, RCAAQ (Regroupement des centres d’artistes autogérés du Québec), REPAIRE (Regroupement de pairs des arts indépendants de recherché et d’expérimentation), and IMAA (Independent Media Arts Alliance).

IMAGES: courtesy of the artists and Avatar Centre.