Helen is an interdisciplinary artist, researcher and consultant. She leads the Laboratory for Artistic Intelligence which is an artist-driven transdisciplinary research group that specializes in reimagining how things work in the world.
As an artist, Helen has has been commissioned, produced, presented and supported through commissions, grants and residencies by organizations in Canada, Germany, USA, France, Argentina, UK and Australia. These include: Kresge Foundation, The Banff Centre, Performance Space/Arts House/Australia Council for the Arts, L’Institute international de la marionnette, Le Fondation Tenot, OBORO/Festival Accès Asie, and all three levels of arts councils in Canada. She has been honoured with nominations for the Ontario Premier’s Award for Excellence in the Arts and the Toronto Dora awards in the general theatre section (Outstanding Production, Scenic Design, Lighting Design).
Helen has a wide range of research and consulting clients, including public funders, private foundations, creative agencies and advocacy organizations. She has written articles and book chapters for Routledge, Canadian Theatre Review, Social Innovation Exchange (SIX), Ontario Nonprofit Network (ONN), Toronto Arts Foundation, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA), Canadian Public Arts Funders, Cultural Pluralism in the Arts Movement Ontario (CPAMO), The Dance Current, and Ricepaper Magazine.
Helen has played an active role in many working groups, consultations, multi-stakeholder committees and lab/incubator initiatives convened by organizers such as City of Toronto, Canadian Heritage, Government of Canada, Artscape, Canada Council for the Arts and Toronto Arts Council around arts and culture, research, knowledge mobilization, city, civic engagement, advocacy, and community organizing. As an advisory committee member, she helped the Ontario Nonprofit Network develop a sector-wide Evaluation Strategy and advised on their Decent Work Strategy. She was formerly with the Culture of Cities Centre, a Salzburg Global Fellow, and a Board member with Social Innovation Canada and the Centre for Social Innovation.
Speaking engagements include conferences convened by Edinburgh International Culture Summit, Mowat NFP/Community Knowledge Safety Alliance of Saskatchewan, Ministry of Immigration/Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Sport/Ismaili Council, Canadian Race Relations Foundation, International Association for the Study of the Culture of Cities, American Comparative Literature Association, Ontario Museums Association, Magnetic North Theatre Festival, University of Toronto, and others.
Helen’s multifaceted practice is rooted in an approach she calls Marginalia: a reflective practice of commentary, connection, creativity and criticality. Her practice emerges out of designing responsive interactions, installations (environments) and interventions rooted in the margins of situations.