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Upcoming Installations

Sixteen Chimes
By Alexandre Klinke
June 20 to September 23, 2024. Open 10 am to 4 pm Thursday to Monday.
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 313 Highway 124, South River, Ontario
Pay by Donation
Sixteen Chimes is a sound art installation that features 16 chime bars, each one controlled electronically by a custom-made circuit. By placing the chimes in different parts of the gallery, the installation emphasizes the spatial nature of sound, and its interaction with distinct acoustic spaces. The generative aspect of the piece is determined by the irregular beats that each chime makes, repeating every 1 to 25 seconds, which can be modified by exhibition visitors from a knob located with each chime. The result is an ever-changing composition that is affected by the audience's interaction with the piece.

With the prospect of Artificial Intelligence affecting several aspects of our society in a pervasive manner, Sixteen Chimes encourages constructive collaboration between humans and machines, inviting reflection on how a system can be modified collectively, and how the effects of individual actions shape the outcome of an event at any given time.

Sixteen Chimes employs aspects of generative art and sound spatialization, using physical sonic objects that can be manipulated by the audience, without the use of computers or audio speakers. The ever-changing musical piece creates an immersive sonic environment, where the public can observe different aspects that affect one’s listening experience.
Alexandre Klinke is a composer and media artist from Sao Paulo, Brazil, based in Vancouver, BC. His work encompasses different fields such as video, multimedia art, music for film, sound design and live music performance. The appreciation of sound is at the core of his practice. He releases music under his own name, as well as using the alias Playback Head, an experimental project that ranges from jazz to electronic and ambient, merging traditional instruments with field recordings, sound-making objects and electronic devices. Working with video and multimedia, he looks at the perceptual effects of the interplay between sound and image, using both analog (magnetic tape, super 8 film, VHS) and digital technologies. His audiovisual pieces incorporate a variety of textures that allude to the ambiguous nature of perception and memory.
Borderline (Almaguin Highlands): Collective counter mapping through sonic geographies
By Jessica Thompson
Open after September 14, 2023. Open 10 am to 4 pm Thursday to Monday.
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 313 Highway 124, South River, Ontario
Pay by Donation
Borderline is a critical mapmaking project that uses sound to illuminate social and economic differences in local geographies. Visitors to the NAISA North Media Arts Centre are invited to contribute to a large-scale soundmap of the Almaguin Highlands by borrowing a toolkit to map sounds in one of the villages of their choice, or by using the Borderline mobile app. The sounds collected will be added to the map on an ongoing basis.

The Borderline iOS app enables users to automatically map sounds in their environment, put them in dialogue with other forms of data, and generate interactive soundscapes by playing sounds back into the environment. Click here to download

Jessica Thompson is a media artist working in sound, performance and mobile technologies. Her interactive artworks have shown at venues such as the International Symposium of Electronic Art (San Jose, Dubai, Vancouver), the Conflux Festival (New York), Thinking Metropolis (Copenhagen), Beyond/In Western New York (Buffalo), NIME (Oslo), Artists’ Walks (New York), Locus Sonus (Aix-en-Provence), the AGW Triennial (Windsor), InterACTION (Kitchener), HASTAC (Vancouver), Re:Sound (Aalborg), and Entorno Encuentro Exploración (Pamplona), The Politics of Sound (Lethbridge) and CAFKA (Kitchener). She has received grants from the Ontario Arts Council, the Toronto Arts Council, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, and the Government of Ontario.
The Decomposing Piano
Open 24/7 in All Seasons
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 313 Highway 124, South River, Ontario
The Decomposing Piano is a semi-permanent outdoor installation that explores the effects of the Northern Ontario climate on an upright piano at its location at the NAISA North Media Arts Centre in South River, Ontario, Canada. This is inspired by musical explorations in Australia of performing on - and of collecting - 'ruined' pianos - pianos left outside in the natural environment for an extended period of time (see https://bolleter.wixsite.com/warpsmusic for further insights).

The Decomposing Piano at NAISA was installed in December 2022 at a point where the upright piano was still playable despite some tuning deficiencies. As time goes on it is expected to become more and more difficult to play. However, in the gradual "decomposition" or "weathering" of the piano over time, new sounds should emerge - some of which might require increasing amounts of aid from recording and amplification to be experienced. Through its entire decomposition process, the public is invited to play the piano at NAISA and experience its transformation until it is deemed unsafe to play. The NAISATube YouTube Channel features a 24/7 webcam of the Decomposing Piano.
View Project History

Art's Birthday Weathered Piano Exchange

On January 17, 2024 NAISA is presenting the Art's Birthday Weathered Piano Exchange which is a collaboration with pianist and composer Jesse Budel. Jesse Budel at the Murray Bridge Piano Sanctuary in South Australia and Nadene Thériault-Copeland at NAISA will exchange recorded improvisations on pianos from their respective locations that will be made into a composition that will be aired on the radio show Electric Sense on CIUT Radio and during a special Art's Birthday broadcast on CITR in Vancouver called 24 Hours of Radio Art. The improvised recordings form a musical correspondence mixing weathered pianos recorded on location during both the Canadian winter and the Australian summer.

Summer 2023 Fundraising Concerts

In the summer of 2023 NAISA's Executive Director Nadene Thériault-Copeland hosted a series of fundraising concerts with invited guest performers to join her on the Decomposing Piano.  Audience members were also invited to perform during the interval breaks.

August 26, 2023 - Decomposing Piano and Violin Concert

July 29, 2023 - 4 Hands Piano Duets

June 24, 2023 - Duet for Decomposing Piano and ‘Crutch'

Winter 2022-23 Recordings

In the first month of the piano being outdoors recordings were made to demonstrate the character of the piano and the variations in tuning and keyboard action that occurred as the winter temperatures changed.

January 22 2023 - Only 15-20 keys working

January 17, 2023 - Piano Improvisation for NAISA North Re-Opening Party

December 29, 2022 - Three Weeks after being Outdoors

The Sensation of Distribution
By Mitchell Akiyama and Brady Peters
Open 24/7 year round.
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 313 Highway 124, South River, Ontario

The Sensation of Distribution is a reprise of Mitchell Akiyama and Brady Peters’s 2019 work, The Distribution of Sensation, which they created while artists in residence at The Bentway, a large, urban public space situated under an elevated highway in downtown Toronto. The Distribution of Sensation was a sound sculpture composed of PVC pipes installed around The Bentway that invited visitors to listen through the natural resonance of the cylinders, creating a series of musical experiences across the site. Mimic the plumbing infrastructure of the site, the installation was meant to create aesthetic slippages that might potentially lead to confusion as to what exactly functioned or counted as art.

The re-installation of this work at NAISA blends the pipe sculptures into a more domestic vernacular. Mounted on NAISA’s exterior walls to impersonate furnace vents and erupting from the ground to suggest rogue plumbing gone awry, The Sensation of Distribution re-invites visitors to explore the unnoticed or imminent sonic and aesthetic potential of our built environment.
Mitchell Akiyama is a Toronto-based scholar, composer, and artist. His eclectic body of work includes writings about plants, animals, cities, and sound art; scores for film and dance; and objects and installations that trouble received ideas about history, perception, and sensory experience. Akiyama’s output has appeared in commensurately miscellaneous sources such as Leonardo Music Journal, ISEA, Sonar Music Festival (Barcelona), Raster-Noton Records (Berlin), Gendai Gallery (Toronto), and in many other exhibitions, publications, and festivals. He holds a PhD in communications from McGill University, an MFA from Concordia University, and is currently an Assistant Professor of Visual Studies at the Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design at the University of Toronto.
Brady Peters is a Canadian designer and researcher who successfully bridges technology and design. He has significant expertise in the use and development of design technology, in integrative construction, and in digital fabrication. With many years of experience in practice, Peters has successfully collaborated with experts in architecture, engineering, and computer science. He specializes in architectural acoustics, environmental simulation, computational design, and digital fabrication. He uses computer programming, parametric modelling, and simulation to design performance-driven forms, and is skilled in the communication and fabrication of buildings with complex geometry. He received his PhD in Architecture from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen, Denmark, a Professional Master of Architecture from Dalhousie University, a Bachelor of Environmental Design (Distinction) from Dalhousie University, and, Bachelor of Science in Geography (Distinction) from the University of Victoria.