Ayatana residents patrol with Safe Wings Ottawa for birds injured or killed in collisions with buildings.

Residents release birds after banding (photo Gabbee Stolp)

Residents visit the National Museum of Natures archives

Water color by resident Adell Pound

Residents work with the Wild Bird Care Center's x-ray collection

ufArtists working with the Innis Point Bird Banding Association

Expert owler Bernie Ladouceur leads residents to listen to nocturnal birds

Montreal artist Marjorie Lemay films a pair of eagles
through binoculars with a super 8

Artist Regan Rothman photographs a dead finch through a pocket microscope

Residents hand feed geese along the Ottawa river (photo Gabbee Stolp)






















Parliament of Owls

Birds and Ornithology for Artists
Gatineau Hills, May, 2018
Deadline to apply: Jan 10, 2018

Owls are generally solitary, but when seen together the group is called a parliament as they have long been considered to be of a wise disposition.

Biophilia is a series of guided research residencies for conceptual artists interested in ecology and life sciences. Parliament of Owls is a specialized program that focuses on birds that will take place over a week in Gatineau, Quebec, Canada in the spring of 2018. The residency will involve twice daily excursions into forests, wildlife sanctuaries, farms and research labs enriched by biologists, naturalists and experts. Residents will come away with a rudimentary understanding of migration, flight, rehabilitation and bird behavior within a range of natural habitats.

Ayatana residencies focus on experience and research by visual and conceptual artists. Writers, poets, musicians and dancers are also invited to apply.  This immersive research residency leaves little time free for making art, so developing ideas with the 5 other residents and collecting material is encouraged at all times. 

At least half of Biophilia field trips are spent outdoors.

All activities are subject to change depending on ecological conditions, expert availability and other uncontrollable variables. Outings will go ahead rain or shine.

Artist talk: We invite you to give a private artist talk to share your work with the group.

Residents will participate in a bird tagging event for scientific monitoring of wild birds on an outing with the Innis Point Bird Banding Association.

Residents will visit the Ottawa Wild Bird Care Center to observe the many wild birds being rehabilitated there and to see the collection of eggs, feathers, nests, and x-rays. The center hosts up to 600 birds. We are likely to see: Jays, finches, cardinals, wax wings, ravens, woodpeckers, humming birds and the resident turkey vulture and kestrel.

Ottawa is home to a murder of 6000 crows that roost in the city.

Residents will witness the return of migratory birds on an outing along the shore of the Ottawa River. Plovers, cormorants, heron, sandpipers.

Dawn Chorus:
Residents will stroll through Gatineau Park at day break to hear the dawn chorus lead by a field naturalist with expertise in identifying birds by song. Robins, orioles, thrush, grosbeak, warbler, veery.

Owl Prowl:
This outing will be lead by an expert from the Ottawa Field Naturalist Society. Residents will learn to call owls and identify nocturnal birds. Bard owls, night herons, Whip-poor-wills, Snipe.

Bird Collision Research, Prevention and Rescue:
Work with FLAP, and Safe Wings Ottawa to collect birds killed by collisions with buildings.

Visit an organic free range chicken farm.

We will visit the Museum of Nature's collection of birds.


Residents will be picked up in Ottawa, Canada and driven to the Ayatana Residency House, near the small town of Chelsea, Quebec. This culturally vibrant town, surrounded by mountains and nestled between Gatineau National Park and the Gatineau River, is home to many scientists and artists.


$1200 USD
Residency places are limited to 6 artists. Official invites will be given to accepted applicants to help in the procuration of grants and funding.


What is included:
All activities.
Transportation to all activities.
Supplies, equipment and technical gear.
A comfortable bed in the Ayatana residency house.
Most meals will be provided, cooked by our resident chef. *Residents will be responsible for paying for their own meals from restaurants, which will happen 2 or 3 times during the week.

How to apply 
Send the following material to by Jan 10, 2018
1. Artist CV
2. Artist statement (about 200 words)
4. Portfolio 5 – 10 examples of work

Only applications that follow these guidelines will be considered.


Disclaimer: Those who do not like the outdoors or to talk about art, need not apply.

Friend us on face book for future calls for applications and posts about art and science fb

For more images of past Biophilia adventures see our face book albums

Parliament of Owls May 2017, Chelsea, Quebec

Sept 2016
, Chelsea, Quebec

July 2015, Wolfville, Nova Scotia

Sept 2014 Wakefield, Quebec