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BEFORE LAW (2022)




Since 2014, Sharlene Bamboat & Mitchell have been building an expansive body of work and research around the legal trials of animals in Medieval Europe and by extension, its colonies. Central to this is the experimental film Bugs and Beasts Before the Law, as well as a series of print works, and an artistic publication co-commissioned by Mercer Union and Henry Art Gallery.

Framed as an appendix to the film, Before Law is a web-based artist project that features the work of more than a dozen contemporary artists, writers, poets and thinkers with wide-ranging, playful, and critical interests in the five organizing chapters of the film Bugs and Beasts Before the Law. A highlight among them, are six new projects produced with support from Bamboat & Mitchell by Canadian and international artists, writers, and filmmakers who broadly and incisively explore the complexity of human relationships with the greater natural world. In addition to these new works, are many others that have been expanded, adapted, and reimagined specifically for Before Law.
They include works of scholarship, and literary and artistic explorations that take up everything from the legal frameworks that implicate and control non-human subjects, through to historical and contemporary notions of ritual, myth, and conflict between worldly beings and ecologies. Before Law also includes a Screening Room that will feature a changing program of live events, screenings, and performances that are organized by Bamboat, Mitchell and invited guest programmers for a limited period of time.

With new works by Donika Kelly; Parastoo Anoushahpour, Faraz Anoushahpour, and Ryan Ferko; Sukaina Kubba; Shahana Rajani and Jeanne Penjan Lassus; Oliver Husain; and Zoe Todd. The project also features Renisa Mawani and Antoinette Burton; Renèe Helèna Browne; Ama Codjoe; Rupali Morazaria; Emilia Beatriz, ANORAK; Sarah Keenan; and more.