Inspired by the work of anthropologist Mary Douglas, "Dirt is Matter Out of Place" was an installation in the gallery Articule as well as a walk, pigeon release and interdisciplinary panel. The project explored our ambiguous relation to dirt, prejudice and aesthetics through the figure of the Montreal pigeon (also a grey dove).
Pigeons were once war heroes, aristocratic messengers and a major source of protein. Humans brought them to cities to fulfill all these roles, but with technological, social and food changes pigeons became feral; loosing their 'place' and becoming 'dirty' in this process. And yet, they are as dirty as doves since doves are nothing more than white pigeons.
Releasing homing pigeons was part of the event; English and French maps were distributed; Redpath Natural History Museum artifacts were exhibited; the panel brought together ethnobiologist Luc-Alain Giraldeau (UQAM), urbanist Laurent Lussier and pigeon-breeder François Messier.