Lauren Fournier is a curator, writer, artist, and PhD candidate in the Department of English at York University. She is an interdisciplinary scholar working at the intersection of art history, theory, philosophy, literature and environmental humanities, and gender and sexuality studies. Her research is focused on the histories and practices of "auto-theory" as a post-1960s mode of feminist practice across media. Lauren has worked as a frontline mental health and harm reduction worker, and she is actively engaged in bridging social work with her academic and artistic practices. Her commitment to mental health advocacy, as well as class and racial justice, shapes her work. Her research takes the form of publications, exhibitions, screenings, research-creation, and collaboration. Lauren is the creator of Fermenting Feminism (Berlin: Laboratory for Aesthetics and Ecology, 2017) and Self Care for Skeptics (Toronto: Rising Intonation Press, 2015), and is the Associate Editor of Kapsula Magazine, a multimedia platform for experimental, web-based approaches to contemporary art writing and criticism. She volunteers on the programming committee of the Feminist Art Conference (since 2014), the executive committee of the Centre for Feminist Research, and is a former board member of Trinity Square Video. Her video work is represented and distributed by Vtape in Toronto. Her artwork has been exhibited in galleries, artist-run centres, and screenings across Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Europe. Lauren's writing has been published in various peer-reviewed journals and contemporary art publications, including Contemporary Women's Writing, a/b: Auto/Biography Studies, Canadian Art, Comparative Media Arts Journal, Imaginations: Journal of Cross-Cultural Image Studies, Canadian Journal of Woman Studies, Magenta Magazine, Kapsula Magazine, Milkweed, West Coast Line, and Desire Change: Contemporary Feminist Art in Canada (McGill-Queens University Press, 2017). She has authored exhibition essays and experimental art writing texts for Dazibao (Montréal), Untitled Art Society (Calgary), Susan Hobbs (Toronto), Zalucky Contemporary (Toronto), and the Organization of Saskatchewan Arts Councils. Recent curatorial projects include Autotheory (Vtape), The Sustenance Rite (Blackwood), and Fermenting Feminism (CDCC, FrontSpace, Büro BDP). The 2018 recipient of the MPfYCC, her exhibition Epistemologies of the Moon will open at the Art Gallery of Guelph in 2018.
Industry Expertise (8)
Areas of Expertise (13)
Provost Dissertation Scholarship, York University (professional)
SSHRC Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement (professional)
Ontario Graduate Scholarship, York University (professional)
Susan Crocker & John Hunkin Award in Fine Arts, York University (professional)
SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Doctoral CGS (professional)
Middlebrook Prize for Young Canadian Curators (professional)
Founded in 2012, the Middlebrook Prize is awarded annually and aims to foster social innovation and curatorial excellence in Canada. The Middlebrook Prize encourages social connectedness and a shared sense of community. The winner is a curator under 30 and receives a space for their exhibition and a $5,000 honorarium.
York University: PhD, English
York University: Curatorial Studies Diploma, Art History and Visual Culture
Simon Fraser University: MA, English
University of Regina: BA, Fine Arts
- Member: ACLA (American Comparative Literature Association) (2017-present)
- Member: MLA (Modern Language Association) (2015-present)
- Member: ALECC (Association for Literature, Environment, and Culture in Canada) (2017-present)
- Member: ATDS (The American Theatre and Drama Society) (2017-present)
- Member: Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences (CFHSS) (2015-present)
- Member: Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English (2015-present)
- Member: WGSRF (Women’s and Gender Studies et Recherches Feministes) (2015-present)
- Member: Executive Committee & Council of Associates, Centre for Feminist Research, York University (2014-present)
- Member: SSA (Sexuality Studies Association) (2016-18)
Media Appearances (4)
Canadian Curating Talent
Interview with Matt Galloway on CBC’s Metro Morning on the Middlebrook Prize for Young Canadian Curators. 8 March 2018.
The Art World’s Strangest New Trend: Fermentation
I was interviewed for my publishing and curatorial project "Fermenting Feminism" by Siobhan Leddy, who included our interview in her larger coverage of fermentation as a trend in the contemporary art world.
Warten auf die Transformation
Die Tageszeitung print
I was interviewed by a German journalist in Berlin who covered the launch of my curatorial project and artist book "Fermenting Feminism" in Die Tageszeitung, Berlin's local newspaper. This is the local coverage, which was published in the print newspaper and archived online.
These wild and wacky lady wrestlers are turning Toronto Island into a circus of hurt this weekend
Toronto Life online
I gave an interview with Toronto Life in my performance persona "Manic Pixie Doom Girl" in the lead up to the League of Lady Wrestlers showdown at Artscape Gibraltar Point on Toronto Island.
Event Appearances (10)
Fermenting Feminism: Approaching Intersectionality through Microbial Transformation
Leavening the Conversation: Intersections of Food, Fermentation, and Feminism McGill University, September 2017
The Sustenance Rite
Curatorial talk University of Toronto Mississauga, December 2017
Medical Museion, Copenhagen. November 2017 Curatorial Talk
The Paradox of Narcissism and the Philosopher’s Wife: Towards a Definition of Auto-Theory
Luce Irigaray International Seminar University of Bristol, England, UK 2016.
Auto-Theory as Feminist Practice
Gender and Sexualities Research Group Cardiff University, Wales, UK 2016
The Rise of Autotheory Inside and Outside the Academy, American Comparative Literature Association
ACLA Annual Convention UCLA, Los Angeles
Performing Philosophy, Modern Language Association (MLA)
MLA Annual Convention New York Hilton Times Square, NYC, New York
Auto-Theory and the Feminist Politics of Disclosure: Outing Bad Behaviour in Theory, Women's and Gender Studies et Recherches Féministes (WGSRF)
WGSRF at Congress 2018 University of Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan
“Exposure Won’t Pay the Bills: A Panel on Media Arts, Gender, and Labor in Canada.” Women’s and Gender Studies et Recherches Féministes (WGSRF)
WGSRF at Congress 2018 University of Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan
Autotheory - Screening and curatorial talk Vtape
Research Grants (3)
SSHRC Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council $6000.00
As a SSHRC Doctoral CGS holder, I was eligible to apply for travel funding through the Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement. I was successful in receiving this funding, which supported my three month research trip in the UK during the summer of 2016. During this time, I worked with Dr. Valerie Walkerdine at Cardiff University in Wales, and Dr. Luce Irigaray at the University of Bristol.
SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Doctoral CGS
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council $105,000
I applied as an independent to receiving Doctoral funding through SSHRC's Joseph-Armand Bombardier Doctoral CGS. I was successful in the competition, and received three years of funding totaling $105,000, which I brought to York University to support my research as a Doctoral student in the Department of English.
SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Masters CGS
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council $17,500
Nominated through Simon Fraser University's Department of English, I applied to receive Masters-level funding through SSHRC's Joseph-Armand Bombardier Masters CGS. I was successful in the competition, and received 12 months of funding to support the writing of my Masters major research paper under the supervision of Dr. Peter Dickinson and Dr. Dara Culhane.
Laboratory for Aesthetics and Ecology Copenhagen and Berlin
Since 2016, I am engaged in an ongoing collaboration with the Laboratory for Aesthetics and Ecology (Copenhagen, Berlin). This collaboration began with the Laboratory publishing my book-length project "Fermenting Feminism," and has evolved into a series of trans-national exhibitions, screenings, performances, and symposia that have taken place in Berlin, Copenhagen, Kansas City, Toronto, Montreal, and Wisconsin.
Accepted with revisions. Forthcoming.
Oxford: Oxford University Press. 2018.
Edmonton: University of Alberta. Special issue: “Reimaging Breasts.” Eds. Reisa Klein, Gabrielle M. Siegers, Dorothy Woodman. 2018.
Vancouver: Simon Fraser University, School of Contemporary Arts. 3.1. Bare Life/Bear Life. 2017.