Earth Observatory Array Activation – Shift Register (Montreal)

WhiteFeather recently participated in an intensive field research/ workshop/ creation project with Jamie Allen of Shift Register. “SHIFT REGISTER is a research project investigating how human media, technological and infrastructural activities have marked the earth… The earth has been transformed into a ‘planetary laboratory’ subject to further study, control and comprehension. Knowledge of these interactions render to experience global scale phenomena like climate change, dissolving modernist illusions such as the separation of ‘nature’ and ‘society’. As such, it is critical that we engage in new means of composing more public understandings of this global experience. This project attempts to register the shifts between industrialised capitalism and the knowledge afforded by techno-science, between the global scale effects of such activities and the experience of individuals and communities, and between earth as an natural object and as an agent of culture. The project addresses the interdisciplinary problem of how to identify, catalogue and make publicly legible these shifts through methods related to natural science fieldwork, artistic research, and critically oriented translational practices of media and technology…”

“The intent of the Earth Observatory Array Activation Workshop (EOAAW) held in Montreal [was] to first undertake a visit to a site that actively helps compose our ‘picture’ of the geosphere and its current climatological transitions, as well as to create, together, a physical element of the Earth Observatory Array… looking specifically at the hydrological measurement and analysis of snow and ice… which forms part of the “Earth Observatory Array”, a global array of materialised forms being created as part of the Shift Register project ( The Montreal Earth Observatory Array Element [was] collaboratively located, designed and activated by workshop participants…”

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Partners included the BVE Ste-Marthe Pilot Watershed (École de Technologie Superieure), the Speculative Life Research Cluster at the Milieux Institute and Eastern Bloc.

Link to a downloadable PDF of the extensive workshop reader, here.

Downloadable PDF of the response document, here.

More photos available on the Shift Register Tumblr, here and here.

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