Born from the collaborative minds of 4 artists late one fateful night in a rapidly gentrifying Montreal neighborhood over electric conversation, improvised drumbeats and copious amounts of beer, Volatile Works was forged.
Volatile: (from Latin volatilis flying, from volare to fly)
- from Collins English Dictionary and Thesaurus
- adj. (of a substance) capable of readily changing from a solid or liquid form to a vapour.
- (of persons) disposed to caprice or inconstancy.
- (of circumstances) liable to sudden change.
- lasting only a short time.
- Computers (of memory) not retaining stored information when the power supply is cut off.
- n. a volatile substance
Since that evening in January of 2003, new people have joined the group, some of the group is currently fighting eviction from said neighborhood to make way for melamine condos, and the hole in the wall bar where it all went down has closed.
Are we a media arts collective? Sometimes. A production team, cast, and crew? Sometimes. A show and tell tag team brainstorming lab? Yeah, kindof. A free software hacklab? Well, not just yet, we're slowly working on that one. A get together of good friends who are into creative exchange, exchange, debate, and just hanging out. Always.
We offer one another support, critical feedback, encouragement and friendship throughout our individual and collective expressions of creativity. We allow ourselves to dive into our work with passion, commitment, and full spirit. We also give ourselves and one another the space and time to create complete and utter crap, along with the knowledge that this is often a necessary part in the whole creative process.
We aim to engage ourselves, one another, and, the world around us, in a process of creative invention, critical questioning, and political exploration and action in the face of the mind-numbing mcjobs, joblessness and poverty, the sexual and gender straightjackets, and imperialist destruction (military and economic) imposed on everything and everyone and every part of the world that doesn't fit some twisted politicians or business executives or corporate university teachers idea of a good corporate citizen, obedient consumer, or capitalist wet dream. From quebec to italy and the balkans, from newfoundland to latin america, from the maritimes to the middle east and beyond, we try to combine political awareness and action with playful, imaginative, yet no less serious resistance. Sometimes we are militant and in your face. Sometimes we are playful, silly and just plain ridiculous. We are autonomistas at heart. Even in our most bitchy or cynical or despairing moments.
Though we all have our moments of high irony, satire, and full-on cynicism, we all believe in the magic that can happen when a piece of film, flickering in a strange light, gets through to you and moves you, when a song, a few bars of music, or a set of beats unlocks something unexpected inside of you, when a group of searching, creative individuals come together to create something new, how a creative convergence and newness and amazing synergy can come out of those moments, when you catch a glimpse, in the middle of a militant demo, facing a line of riot cops, or sitting numbly in front of a computer screen, or working to stay awake or keep going at the end of a long workday, or nursing your body to health from illness, malnourishment, abuse, overwork, or the brutalities of the many prisons we are caged in, of sharing intense, playful, or everyday moments with good friends, lovers, people we just met, of the possibility of different or new or more creative ways to live and organize our lives, our worlds, our ways of coming together and making spaces where intense and beautiful things can happen for everyone and we all have what we need to make that happen.
Artistic practices include: digital video, super-8, film, animation, web art, sound, jamming, digital media, blogging, interdisciplinary works, diy of all kinds.