MTL - Art Hives and Makerspaces


2 March
La Ruche d’Art, 4525 Saint-Jacques St., Montréal QC

Art Hives and Makerspaces: How can creative engagement foster social innovation?

Innovation, once the prized child of exclusively technological circles, is now said to hold the key to some of our most daunting social ills. Politicians, entrepreneurs and funding bodies are all enthusiastically touting the transformative potential of cross-sectorial collaboration, more affectionately known as social innovation. But what puts the social in social innovation? Is it the problems tackled or the methods used to tackle them? In this public conversation we will think critically about our society’s preparedness for inclusive transformative processes. How can we ensure that those with lived-experience are not only beneficiaries of creative solutions, but are also invited to the table as collaborators in the practice of innovation? What types of tools, skills, and free spaces do we need to craft meaningful social change? As community members, where do we meet to engage our imaginations, practice developing our voices and collectively create a world we would like to live in?

Marc-Olivier Ducharme is the manager of échoFab, the first Fab Lab on Canadian soil, where he works to develop Open Hardware and strengthen an active community of passionate hackers. A graduate of Political Science at the University of Montreal, he is interested in human-machine interactions, transhumanism, open culture and the revolutionary potential of new forms of sharing that emerge from the open circulation of information and knowledge.

Janis Timm-Bottos is the director of the Art Therapy program in the Department of Creative Arts Therapies at Concordia University . Janis' research team is currently investigating the qualities of healing spaces on learning and is launching the national art hive initiative, which promotes small and sustainable art hubs for art making and mutual recovery in every neighbourhood across Canada.

Alex Oster is the Coordinator of Student Experience at Concordia University. He is a father of two, an aspiring agro-silviculturist, and enjoys thinking, acting, and making change around food, community, and sustainability at a systems' level. He lives in Montreal's Sud-Ouest and his favourite tree is the Hazelnut.