TORONTO – Making Space for Place

Transitions in Progress: making space for place

Elena Basile, Roberta Buiani, Valentina Sutti

Medium: Intermedia/mobile installation


Transitions in Progress is a bike-powered mobile lab – the TiP lab –, an online archive and an exhibition, which engage with the city’s structure and its multiple protagonists through an in vivo, bottom-up approach. Drawing on Toronto’s socio-historical, natural and urban transformations, this project explores the city through the relationships between human and non-human, official histories and personal memories, traditional mapping and collective cartographies, by collecting real time testimonies from its residents. By interpreting the city as a dynamic ecosystem, Transitions in Progress aims to evoke the affective geographies that permeate the city, drawing attention to the flows of settlement and displacement that in/visibly stratify its appearance beyond the marginalizing logic of real estate and market economies. In this way it seeks to tell a pluralized story of its ecological complexity, calling attention to the intricate layers of plant, animal, indigenous and migrant resilience, which big data and fancy infographics often hide under a patina of rhetoric, formality, and scientific accuracy.


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Elena Basile is a teacher, researcher, poet and translator committed to exploring how desire is released in the spaces between languages and bodies in movement. She teaches in the Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies at the University of Toronto, in the English Department at York University, and in the Translation Studies Department at Glendon College, Toronto. She collaborates regularly with artists and academics in Italy, Canada and in France. Her research and poetic practice focus on the politics of feminist queer migrant poetics in the context of translation and the new virtual trans-localities of cultural production and dissemination. Part of her work as a literary translator and poet has been recorded in the documentary Three Women: Adapting Lives Adopting Lines (by Adriana Monti, AZ Media, 2010).

Roberta Buiani is a researcher, media artist and activist based in Toronto. Her work balances theoretical and applied research at the intersection of science, technology and creative resistance. She is interested in scientific practices and lab technologies, (bio)politics and the arts, as well as in questioning their traditional functions and rituals and looking for threads that facilitate their cross-communication. She is co-founder of the ArtSci Salon at the Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences. She has a Masters in Art History and a PhD in Communication and Culture both from York University (Toronto, Canada). Her work has been published in Fibreculture, Reconstruction, Cultural Studies, Studi Culturali and Tecnoscienza among other journals. Http://

Valentina Sutti is a director and editor with a background in architecture. She is involved in documentaries, shorts, features and commercials. Her past projects have won awards at several festivals in Germany (Berlinale Talent Campus), the US (Los Angeles, La Jolla, Eureka and Washington Ohio), Italy, Greece and Australia.