Posted on 13 Oct 2017 in

Congratulations, Natalie Murao!

Natalie graduated last week with a BFA in Film, but her 4th year film Floating Light keeps moving on. Floating Light is not only nominated in the Best Canadian Short Award (BCSA) category at the Vancouver Asian Film Festival in November (VAFF), which runs from November 2 to 5, but it's also screening at the Portland Film Festival, which runs from October 3 to November 5, and The San Diego Asian Film Festival, which runs from November 9 to18. Great news, great work! Congratulations again, Natalie! Click here to find out more about Natalie and her work, including Floating Light.

Posted on 06 Oct 2017 in

Judy Radul wins the Mayor’s Arts Award for Visual Arts

Congratulations to Judy Radul on winning the 2017 Mayor's Arts Award for Visual Arts! Here's what the city's site has to say about Judy, the prize, and SCA grad Julian Hou, who Judy chose as an 'emerging artist' to honour as part of her prize:

Judy Radul’s latest works involve an original computer controlled system for live and pre-recorded video. Her practice also includes sculpture, photography, writing and performance. Recent exhibitions include: a solo exhibition at Witte de With Centre for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, 2017; Contour Biennale 8, Mechelen, Belgium, 2017; Bienal de Nicaragua, 2016; Agnes Etherington Art Centre, 2015; Berlin Biennale 8, 2014; DAAD Galerie, 2013. 

Her large-scale media installation World Rehearsal Court (2009) has been shown in Vancouver, Vienna, Seoul, Oslo and Moscow. Related to this project, with Marit Paasche she co-edited a book of collected essays and images A Thousand Eyes: Media Technology, Law and Aesthetics (Sternberg Press, Berlin, 2011). She has a BA in Fine and Performing Arts from Simon Fraser University and a MFA in Visual and Media Arts from Bard College, New York. She is represented by Catriona Jeffries Gallery and teaches at Simon Fraser University.

Julian Hou
Emerging artist

Julian Hou is an artist living as a guest on unceded Coast Salish territory, working in audio, digital media, performance, and installation. He has recently participated in solo and group exhibitions: 8eleven, Toronto; Spareroom, Vancouver; Artspeak, Vancouver; the Vancouver Art Gallery; 221A @ Occidental Temporary, Paris; L'escalier, Montreal; CSA Space, the Audain Gallery, Simon Fraser University, and The Apartment, Vancouver.

Hou has also recently held performances at Kamias Triennale, Manila; Things that can happen, Hong Kong; Damien and the Love Guru, Brussels; and the Vancouver Art Gallery. He was a curatorial resident at 221A in 2014, and has co-curated projects at Model Projects, Vancouver with Tiziana La Melia.

And here's what the city has to say about the annual prize itself:

The annual Mayor's Arts Awards recognize 20 established and emerging artists from a diversity of communities that make up our creative sector. Our 10 award categories include: craft and design, culinary arts, film and new media, literary arts, visual arts, public art, community-engaged art, music, dance, and theatre. Honourees receive a cash award and are selected for:

Making significant contribution to their respective disciplines
Achieving or contributing to artistic excellence
Showing leadership and support for Vancouver's diverse cultural communities in their careers

We also recognize contributions to our arts community in five categories: philanthropy, business support, volunteerism, arts board member of the year, and lifetime achievement. Lifetime achievement honourees receive a cash award and honourees of the other categories receive a special non-cash award.

Nominations occur every spring and awards are presented in the fall. The 2017 awards ceremony is on Wednesday, October 11 at the Roundhouse Community Arts and Recreation Centre.

Click here for more information about the Mayor's Arts Awards and to look at all of this year's winners and the archive of past winners.

Posted on 08 Sep 2017 in

Judith Garay’s The Fine Line – twisted angels ... from A Performer’s Perspective

The SCA's Judith Garay's dance work The Fine Line – twisted angels has been redeveloped / reinvented by Shannon Cuykendall, who is a PhD Candidate at SFU's School of Interactive Arts + Technology, and a diverse team of co-creators into A Performer's Perspective: a SSHRC funded "interactive documentary" website with extensive content drawn from the perspective – indeed also the literal POV – of the dancers performing the work.

Cuykendall and her team describe the project this way:

"We explore ways to transmit a dance performer’s point of view through the creation of an interactive documentary. Using qualitative and quantitative research methods, we gathered a broad spectrum of data to understand the kinesthetic experience of dancers in Judith Garay’s work, The Fine Line – twisted angels. The dancers’ data is presented through various forms and modes of interaction, providing audiences the opportunity to reflect, empathize and understand the choreography through multiple lenses."

If that preliminary description sounds intriguing and already a little complicated, that's because the project is in fact involved and deep. It's well worth exploring the project's whole website, which covers everything from the extensive data collection processes used to more familiar 'behind the scenes' style documentary portraits of the individual dancers. Check it out here: A Performer's Perspective.

Posted on 28 Aug 2017 in

Congratulations, Noé

Excellent news! The SCA's Noé Rodríguez won 'best film' in the Pasajes de Cine section of the 2017 Filmadrid International Film Festival for his film Ceiba. Here's how the film is described on the Filmadrid site:

Ceiba is one of the most characteristic trees of the Caribbean. Noé Rodríguez decides to outline a fragmentary and suggestive biographical sketch of a culture: from its environmental roots (the almost surreal portraits of the natural surroundings) to its most specific political and social features (the colonial wounds or the rising of communism).

Congratulations, Noé!

Posted on 14 Jul 2017 in

Could this be you?

Attention SCA Students!

The School for the Contemporary Arts within the Faculty of Communication, Art, and Technology (FCAT) is looking for a SCA Student Liaison to work closely with FCAT staff to communicate information and build a sense of community among the different disciplines; support current students, and oversee faculty–to-student communications and a SCA Recruitment Ambassador to work closely with FCAT staff to assist recruitment efforts, support prospective students, and positively represent SCA on all campuses.

For more information, follow these links: SCA Student Liaison & SCA Recruitment Ambassador.

Posted on 14 Jul 2017 in

Musebots do it better?

Leading up to the Play Nice: Music by Humans & Intelligent Machines event on Friday, July 28 at the Gold Saucer Studio organized by the Sawdust Collector, Barbara Adler, who's not only a member of Sawdust Collector but also a musician, poet, storyteller, SCA MFA grad, and indeed one of the players for the event (accordion!), has started to blog a little about the show. The first entry presents "5 questions" to "Chief Musebot Evangelist" and SCA professor, Arne Eigenfeldt. Read the whole exchange here. Make sure to come back as Adler has promised other interviews to come. And also don't forget to explore the rest of the site for more info about the Musebots and their designers and the other players and performers for the event. For more information about Musebots and the idea of Musical Metacreation and to hear some musical examples, check out the Musical Metacreation site.

Posted on 29 Jun 2017 in

Musical Metacreation (MuMe) Workshop

The SCA's Arne Eigenfeldt recently returned from Atlanta, Georgia. He and recent SCA MFA graduate student Paul Paroczai presented a paper on Paul's graduating work, vorbei – a piece of generative music software – at the Musical Metacreation (MuMe) Workshop held at Georgia Tech.

Along with Philippe Pasquier, who is Assistant Professor in the School of Interactive Arts and Technology at SFU, and longtime collaborator Ollie Bown (University of New South Wales), Eigenfeldt was co-chair of the workshop, which aimed to endow machines with creative behaviour. He also was a co-organizor, with Bown, of the MuMe concert, held at the Mammal Gallery in Five Points, Atlanta.

If you'd like to see Eigenfeldt's autonomous music creating 'musebots' in action, he and Paroczai, Matthew Horrigan (SFU MFA Graduate), and Yves Candau (SFU MFA Graduate and current SIAT PhD Candidate) will be participating in Play Nice: Musical Collisions Between Humans & Intelligent Machines on Friday, July 28, at Vancouver's Gold Saucer Studio, presented by Sawdust Collector.

Paul at MuMe workshop

Mammal Gallery exterior

Ollie Bown checking out the Mammal Gallery

Posted on 22 Jun 2017 in

Contemporary Nomads

The SCA's Henry Daniel is developing his ongoing Contemporary Nomads research project into an "evening-length combined installation and live performance," as he describes it, for the coming fall semester. Additionally newsworthy about this event is the participation of guest artists Adam Basanta (Music), Sammy Chien and Shanghan Chien (Media Design), and Alan Storey (Set Design). Adam Basanta, an SCA BFA (composition) grad and visual artist, will also be the SCA Dance area's Iris Garland Visiting Artist in the fall. This 'residencey' is funded by Iris Garland Dance Program Enhancement Fund, which was founded in 2002 in memory of Iris Garland (1935-2002), who was a professor of dance, a choreographer, a dance scholar, and a founding member of the Centre for the Arts, now the School for the Contemporary Arts, at SFU. SCA BFA (film) grad Sammy Chien and his brother Shanghan Chien work together as Chimerik to produce complex video projection installations, most recently for Vancouver's Festival Of Recorded Movement; their work for Contemporary Nomads will be supported by the KRT (Wasitudipuro) Fund. Alan Storey is an active Vancouver-based artist who produces site-responsive interactive works for gallery spaces and site specific public art, such as the ‘Pendulum’ installation in the HSBC Bank on Georgia Street in Vancouver. We'll keep you posted as the project develops. 

Posted on 05 Jun 2017 in

Annie Therrien Boulos

Dean Lastoria, who's in charge of New Students and Retention for the SCA, touches base with a few recent graduates.

Annie Therrien Boulos will be receiving her BFA in Theatre on Friday, June 9th at the Convocation ceremony on Burnaby Mountain. Annie was in the Theatre Performance Stream and was involved in blackbox, clowning, directing projects, and mainstages, but the most important thing that I saw Annie do was deeply care for the School’s community – from being the Theatre Student Union President to never failing to help a new student. I’m glad she is graduating, of course, but we will miss Annie!

Q: You were active in the Theatre Student Union — Can you talk about how important it is?

A: one of the biggest things that i learned at SFU is that i am the one in charge of making any experience what i want it to be. it's not up to my profs, my peers, my family, the world. it's me who has the power to create the world i want to live in. that's a lot of pressure but it's also exciting. i think that the Theatre Student Union is important in this because it allows students to have more of a say in what their school program looks like, in and out of classes. it builds community, offers support, organizes events, and is there to serve. that's a cool thing to have. it also only runs if you get involved in it and help it run- so, future students, do that.

Q: Clowning — important?

A: very important. stand in front of everyone who matters to you and fail. you'll learn some uncomfortable things. nothing is more helpful.

Q: What’s devising? Any good stories?

A: devising is being in a room with a bunch of people and making some things. The best advice that i was ever given:

1) follow your pleasure.
2) practice deep listening (i'm still working on this one). 
3) just do the weird things and see where it goes.

i have a ton of memories of the various ways we used food in our black box devising projects – from covering each other in cold cuts and other meat products, to pre-chewing trail mix for certain images we wanted to make, to mushing bananas into the wall...

Q: What is next?

A: well, i feel the need to do something completely different, so i'm going to spend some months working on a goat farm in Norway. 

Posted on 30 May 2017 in

Congratulations, Vanessa Goodman

Vanessa Goodman, who is an SCA BFA Dance graduate and the artistic director and choreographer of the Vancouver-based dance company Action at a Distance, has been selected to participate in the Yulanda M. Faris Choreographers Program, along with Daina Ashbee and Justine A. Chambers. Vancouver's Dance Centre describe the program, which they coordinate, as "an initiative designed to mentor and support choreographers who are ready to make a significant leap forward in their work, empowering artists and providing them with the tools to position their careers in a national and international context, through exchanges, networking opportunities, mentoring and professional skills development." Congratulations, Vanessa!

To find out more about Vanessa Goodman and her work with Action at a Distance, the Yulanda M. Faris Choreographers Program, the Dance Centre, and the other dancers, please click the links embedded above.

Vanessa Goodman and Action at a Distance
SFU Woodward's Developmental Residency Program