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Upcoming Installations

Biidaaban: First Light, a virtual reality film
Produced by The National Film Board of Canada
By Lisa Jackson, Mathew Borrett and Jam3
October 4 – November 25, 2018, Thursday to Monday, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 106 Ottawa Ave, South River
An interactive virtual reality film directed by Lisa Jackson, 3D art by Mathew Borrett and produced by NFB.

A large urban city is flooded. Its infrastructure has merged with the local fauna; mature trees grow through cracks in the sidewalks and vines cover south-facing walls. People commute via canoe and grow vegetables on skyscraper roofs. Urban life is thriving.

Rooted in the realm of Indigenous futurism, Biidaaban: First Light is an interactive VR time-jump into a highly realistic—and radically different—Toronto of tomorrow. As users explore this altered city now reclaimed by nature, they must think about their place in history and ultimately their role in the future.

Language carries the knowledge of its speakers. Indigenous North American languages are radically different from European languages and embody sets of relationships to the land, to each other, and to time itself. But as Indigenous languages face the risk of disappearing, we risk losing what they have to teach us.

Biidaaban: First Light asks users to think about their place in history and their role in a possible future. As they move through a highly realistic future Toronto reclaimed by nature, they hear the languages of the place originally known as Tkaronto. Through gaze-based interactions, users engage with the written text of the Wendat, Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) and Anishinaabe (Ojibway) and gain insight into the complex thought systems of this land’s first peoples.

The VR environment was created using to-scale architectural models of Toronto’s Osgoode subway station and the buildings surrounding Nathan Phillips Square.

Lisa Jackson (Anishinaabe) is one of Canada’s most celebrated contemporary artists working in film and VR. In Biidaaban: First Light, Lisa joins forces with 3D artist Mathew Borrett to create a future for Canada’s largest urban centre from an Indigenous female perspective.

This presentation of Biidaaban: First Light would not be possible without the generous support and production of the National Film Board.
Lisa Jackson - Anishinaabe director Lisa Jackson’s award-winning fiction and documentary films have screened widely at festivals such as Berlin, Hot Docs, SXSW and London BFI. Her work has also aired on many networks in Canada and earned her a Genie Award (Canada’s Oscar®). Lisa’s upcoming projects include an IMAX film and more traditional film and TV work. Visit her website. Photo by Michael Labre.
Mathew Borrett creates rich environments using digital and traditional media. His work can be seen on film and TV, and recently in virtual reality experiences as well. Mathew’s home city of Toronto often serves as the inspiration for his work.
The Empty Room
By Christine Webster
November 29, 2018 to January 6, 2019
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 106 Ottawa Ave, South River
Pay by donation
The Empty Room explores new musical composition and spatialization methods in virtual 3D spaces. The user moves freely trough a virtual plateau in the middle of a giant hypercube orbiting over the earth. All around and inside the plateau a genuine 64-channel audio spatializer is combined to create an abstract and ever changing organic visual environment. The Empty Room is a real VR experience – not a 360° film.
Christine Webster was born 1962 in Karlsruhe, Germany, she lives and works in Paris. She creates sounds and experimental music for different kind of media and contexts. Initially trained as a graphic designer she studied electroacoustic music with Jean Schwartz in the late eighties. Since 2003 she has produced music and sound design for independent media producers such as Lardux Films, Terminal Images and for mainstream producers like Folimages, Les Productions de l’Èrable and Ubisoft. She worked with France Musique, was commissioned on multiples residencies for Tapage Nocturne, as well as on CD audio books projects for Ocora-RadioFrance and collaborates with the Orchestre de Radio France. Since 2006 she has worked with virtual reality and social 3D platforms like Second Life and worked for a French in-world marketing company, Community Chest. In October 2013, Christine Webster joined the ENSAD-LAB Spatial Media department in Paris, leading her flagship VR project Empty Room : an electroacoustic composition spatialized in VR, using binaural, object oriented sound objects and ambisonic technologies. Since October 2016 Empty Room is the center of her Phd research at CICM – Paris 8, directed by Anne Sedes. Christine Webster is also well kown in France as a writer and reviewer for KR-HomeStudio and MCD Digitalarti.
By Jane Tingley
January 17 to March 31, 2019, Thursday to Sunday, 10 am to 4 pm
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 106 Ottawa Ave, South River
anyWare is an Internet of Things distributed sculpture comprised of three identical objects that are individually connected to the Internet and physically mirror each other. The anyWare sculptures are art objects that telematically connect different locations in the world and enable distal physical communication. The objects simultaneously respond to people who interact directly with them, as well as allow them to interact with each other through the sculptures. Structuring these interactions are a number of games and puzzles for people to play/solve, either individually or collaboratively. The objects transform in the experience of exploration (either with one person or potentially with many people) and in so doing reveal different levels of interactivity and aesthetic experience.
Jane Tingley Jane Tingley is an artist, curator, and Assistant Professor at the University of Waterloo (CA). She is interested in how interactivity combined with art objects and installation can be used to explore contemporary experience. She received the Kenneth Finkelstein Prize in Sculpture and the first prize in the iNTERFACES – Interactive Art Competition in Porto (PT). She has participated in exhibitions and festivals in the Americas, Middle East, Asia, and Europe.
Re-Collect / Re-Told: Your Stories of New And Old
January 3 – March 31, 2019, Thursday to Sunday, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 106 Ottawa Ave, South River
NAISA wants to hear your voice – the voice of your children and the voice of your parents and grandparents. All of these voices will be matched in this interactive exhibit with historic photos of South River to tell the story of our community and our place in the Near North.
NAISARadio Cafe
January 3 – March 31, 2019, Thursday to Sunday, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 106 Ottawa Ave, South River
Journey in your mind to a place ‘off the beaten track’ and explore an eclectic range of radio and sound art from around the world while sitting at one of NAISA’s Café tables. NAISARadio Café is a curated listening experience delivered through radio receivers on café tables.