Concordia University


A one-week festival presenting a virtual gallery showcasing Intermedia studio arts students from Concordia University. A collaboration between Club IMCA and IMCA 400, the festival celebrates the works of students past and present as they near the end of their Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees.


· fraser place
· carolina larossa
· christine white

· haal 400
· calluna vulgar
· marie soleil st-yves
· oceane buxton
· alex apostolidis
· benni and emerson  sanderson · ley lortie
· vanessa moscato
· diego ramirez

· philippe vandal





clubimca video art screening

performance night


(coming soon)

︎ ︎




HAAL.400 is
Heather Reid. Alex Pruneau.
Abi Stushnoff. Louis-Félix D’Amours.

HAAL Is Present

An event where all members of HAAL will
meet IRL for the first time in a long time.
The background of this page is a video by
Alex Pruneau taken during this event.

Welcome, HAAL would like to direct your attention to your screens. We will show our digression demonstration and would like the next few minutes of your complete (in)attention.

In response to limited resources and social isolation due to the Covid restrictions, four emerging artists created the collective identity of HAAL.400. We are one chaotic body living on a two-dimensional plane.

HAAL est un regroupement de désindividualisation des pratiques, de co-intoxication critique des réflexions qui manifestent un réseau du (non)savoir fertile et soucieux.

HAAL est lieu de rassemblement virtuel, une manière de faire
en commun et de se soulager, une solution basse résolution à un moment pandémique, incertain, malade, isolé, un moyen d’être indulgent.

At the start, HAAL.400 (a.k.a. HAAL) had weekly, free-flowing Zoom conversations about our ideas while keeping notes in an impressionistic way on a master Google Doc. The Master Doc is located in a google drive folder, “HAAL,” and is where we also share thoughts and ideas outside of Zoom. This drive is an archive and directory for the activities of the collective. We initially called these sessions “open studio”: the Zoom meeting was a studio, the conversation was our creation. In the first few sessions, we ended with specific directions of an action or process to explore.

HAAL travaille fort à travailler moins, à trouver des techniques pauvres pour expérimenter ensemble par le son, l’embodiment, la vidéo, le PowerPoint, la parole, le Zoom, la discussion, le geste performé.

As a collective of four members, we integrated Google Slides — an online, shared equivalent to PowerPoint — to our studio practice. We gave ourselves the freedom to create as many slides as we wanted while color coding our contributions and allowing ourselves to infiltrate the content of other member’s slides.

We did work that was not Work - thinking, doing, researching, creating. We simply existed in the space we created with each other, rather than channelling our energies into a recognizable end. It was a non-linear response to the conversation and our own internal impulses, while in a system that required linearity and a fixed end, that would eventually swallow our activities. HAAL.400 is impossible to quantify because it exists as fragments and not as narrative — not a careful building of a foundation for a work, but an infinitely regenerating and self-destructing fractality. At each point when we needed to present work to the class, we found ourselves a container — Powerpoint, Wikipedia, Zoom, Google Drive — and existed in that space. The work was whatever was captured in that container. Then we would leave the container and the work continued, only now uncontained and unperceived.

From this exploration, the question, to “not delete anything?”, arose. This became one of the central axioms at HAAL.400’s core. While working in the digital and relatively unstable spaces of the Internet, we asked each other: what would the life of HAAL.400 be like beyond the end of the school year (May 2021)?

The name, HAAL.400,  resembles “HAL 9000”, the AI assistant from 2001: A Space Odyssey (Clarke 1968). HAAL.400 and HAL 9000 have the common feature in that both aggregate knowledge within a central processing unit and interpolate human activity with the computer.

Reflecting on the similarities and differences between HAAL.400 and HAL 9000, we drew a few conclusions:

  • HAAL.400 is non-artificially intelligent;
  • It exists not within the computer, but through it, transcending the computer;
  • Its main computational asset is digression.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is meant for providing answers to questions or responding to commands and implementing orders. HAAL.400 could give answers and carry orders to completion, yet it would also provide a new set of questions, ridding answers of utility, not to mention response time.

HAAL.400 gave itself permission to indulge in digression. This was the motivation for our Digression Cabarets, a performance jam in three sessions on Zoom. In these jams, we were at once confronted with a ubiquitously absent desire to speak and driven by an urge to perform. In a dynamic of improvisation, comparable to that of our studio time, we logged into the video conference, each with at least two devices, and with conversations extinct, we digressed. But digression from what? Starting with an empty agenda never left HAAL.400 with an empty brief; there was always something to take stock of. “Rub out the word,” said Burroughs (1959). Digressing from no apparent nor specific thing led HAAL.400 to rubbing out an entire body of thing.

HAAL est entropique, se désintègre lentement dans sa non-identité, énergise des subjectivités nouvelles au détriment de sa survie organisationnelle.

The question of the body has now become our main concern: How can the body of HAAL.400 be brought to resolution? How can outsiders, strangers to the HAAL.400’s process, become acquainted with it? Can this quad core subject refuse objectification (and objectivity) while finding resolution as an object?

HAAL est une dérive processuelle qui échappe par auto-ré/é-volution à sa résolution en un assemblage fixe, fini, vernis, poli, et servi chaud dans son plateau d’argent.

Emptiness is not true absence but the absence of language. When I am empty, I have forgotten the words to articulate what my body knows, or the words don’t exist. HAAL was an escape from the restrictions of language, a proposal not to propose, a place to rest from the imperative to explain and to be explainable to the institution of Concordia University. Whatever method of creating art that the art education system is based around cultivating, if it is attempting to cultivate creativity at all, it is not how I think, feel, and create. In HAAL I saw a chance to be empty, and to simply respond, react, and imitate, and see what impulses emerged.

HAAL prend la forme de ses nécessités, se transforme par la matière sensible de la tâche à accomplir, une entité d’intelligences non-artificielles polymorphe au service du travail (non)académique, un outil, une machine, un dispositif.

To date, HAAL.400 witnessed two cycles: “Indulging in Digression” and “Low-Resolution”. The third cycle, which will occur during IMCAFest 2021, is titled “HAAL Is Present.”

HAAL est une défaillance dans le système /system failure/ du quotidien, glitch du réel insolvable qui déplace, pousse, vibre la stabilisation du modèle régnant et bourgeonne d’un trou d’amorce vague, constante bifurcation vers quelque part d’autre, devenir-autre.

HAAL est une blague, une farce, une joke accomplie dans sa communion du niaisage, du non-sérieux, de l’essai et de l’erreur, une accumulation archivistico-digitale d’experimental junk remanié, rafistolé, éparpillé, égaré, dissipé.

In HAAL, I hoped I could finally speak to be heard, and in the frustration of that dream I discovered the need to be silent. In HAAL, I discovered the pleasure and terror of dissonance, opposition, refusal, obstruction, resistance, interruption, and silence. I encountered my difference and the need to be alone.

HAAL est un prétexte, un agencement, un mensonge, une erreur de parcours, saisie en actes de l’impossible, réalisée dans sa forme comico-dissidente.

HAAL est incomplet mais HAAL est là.

Là où les affaires sont partiellement complètes, là où les affaires sont partiellement complexes.

À l’espace cybernétique sera sauvegardé l’intoxication ci-gît,
à l’espace cybernétique sera effacé l’intoxication ci-gît.