Coal Mine in the Canary


18' / HD video / 2021
DE, UK

An essay film told through the body, Coal Mine in the Canary examines the work of John Scott Haldane, the late 19th century physiologist whose experiments with respiration in atmospheric extremes led him to put canaries in coal mines as early indicators of air toxicity. The film explores this historical technique as a form of environmental control, one that would ultimately shape the possibilities of exchange between organisms and their surroundings, determined as a series of regulated variables. In the canary, Haldane developed a new paradigm: to modify an organism is a form of environmental control because there is no border at which the organism begins and the environment ends.

Presentations:

Upcoming:

2021 Biennale WRO 2021: Reverso, Wroclaw, Poland

2021 Vilnius International Film Festival

2021 Rencontres Internationales Paris / Berlin, Louvre Auditorium, Paris