REVERBERATIONS OF A TOPOLOGICAL DAYDREAM
A solo exhibition by Santiago Tavera
March 2, 2018 to April 13, 2018
Opening reception: Friday, March 2, 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Reverberations of a Topological Daydream is a multimedia architectural installation that presents a virtual space in constant translation between physical and digital experiences. Multiple video projections and 3D graphic animations immerse the gallery space, taking viewers into the vastness of a virtual suburban galaxy. Within this constructed digital environment, plexiglass and vinyl structures are used as reflective screens and visual filters, which are activated through the light of the projected image. Memories and sensations are translated around the space through the repetitions and echoes of images and sounds, creating a perceptual topology of virtual reverberations. Topology, as a mathematical term, refers to the exploration of how shapes preserve their permanence in change, by only bending, twisting and stretching, without ever breaking and losing their original self.
This multimedia exhibition presents digital architectural houses as sites of refuge, where memories and illusions emerge, and where perception collides with that of the immediate future and the re-constructed past. Interlacing the role of an outside observer with the one that inhabits an interior site, viewers virtually journey through a familiar place. Viewers inhabit the exhibition space, while virtual spaces are consequently inhabiting them. Reverberations of a Topological Daydream, aims to illustrate the impact digital culture has on how we form our identity within multiple realms. Digital media allows subjects to constantly navigate between perception, memory, physicality and the virtual. Individuals find themselves in a never-ending process of constructing and re-constructing their sense of being, and in turn their sense of belonging. Dislocation, familiar to those who have experienced cultural displacement, has become more apparent as subjects now live as virtual immigrants within the realm of the digital. In cyberspace, subjects and objects exist as images that are constantly moving from one screen to the next, a virtual dislocation similar to the one of a migrant body. Within a state of dislocation, as the displacement of the conscious mind, the body experiences a double sense of place with multiple perceptions and memories. There is a simultaneous sense of being physically here and virtually there, while belonging everywhere and nowhere.
Experimental Collectivities, Collaborations, and (Dis)embodied Digital Experiences
Hemispheric Institute GSI Convergence 2017 – Unsettling the Americas: Radical Hospitalities and Intimate Geographies
Artscape Youngplace, Toronto, Ontario.
October 5-8, 2017
This workshop was organized by Santiago Tavera in collaboration with New York based artist and performer, Candace Thompson.
The workshop generated a social collaboration between participants working towards conflict resolutions between collective and subjective narratives, our histories, and our illusions of the future. Using collaboratively created ritual we established an experimental environment for embodied and disembodied media making. The use of digital media presents the potential to simulate a state of disembodiment (elasticity, translation…), allowing for the alteration of participants’ senses, while pushing the boundaries of their perceptual thresholds and understanding of space, selves, and others. Questions of location and displacement, migration and transience, cultural heirlooms, trauma, and personal narratives—both real and imagined—can be brought to bear in creating work which integrates audio and video recording techniques, live-feed cameras, analog technologies, projection mapping, AR, installation, and performance.
For more information on this workshop click here
Anthony Head (Bath, UK) and Santiago Tavera (Montreal, QC) attended one of the world’s most prominent international arts and technology events, the International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA). This years ISEA aligned with the XVI International Image Festival of Manizales in Colombia from the 11th to the 18th of June. Head and Tavera organized an experimental and interactive workshop titled, Projected Narratives of Being and Belonging, in collaboration with Colombian and Canadian artist, Laura Acosta.
The workshop invited interdisciplinary artists to collaborate on an multiple video projection installation in La Universidad de Caldas. Over 20 participants combined fictional and personal narratives of belonging or displacement along with video experimentation. The workshop brought together scholars and artists to an interdisciplinary discussion and showcase of creative productions applying new technologies in art. This year’s conference theme, Bio-creation and Peace, encouraged participants to reflect on the contributions and alternatives that art, design and technology provide for social development, biodiversity and the establishment of peaceful relationships between diverse communities. The workshop Projected Narratives of Being and Belonging generated social collaboration between participants in order to work towards conflict resolutions between heritage surfaces and subjective narratives, past histories and illusions of the future, and finally, effects of war and visions of peace.
Furthermore Tavera had the opportunity to give an artist talk on his creative-research, Translational Spaces which will also be published in the upcoming ISEA 2017 special issues in the Virtual Creativity Journal, Intellect Books later this year.
Anthony Head (Bath, UK) and Santiago Tavera (Montreal, QC) attended the Besides the Screen conference, in Vitoria, Brazil from May 31st to June 2nd. This year’s conference theme was Unfolding Images: VR, Volumetric Cinema and Space Control, where Head and Tavera had the opportunity to present the Elastic Spaces lab to an international crowd, as well as their personal projects. Head presented SPHERE, a Sensor Platform for Healthcare in a Residential Environment project developed in the UK. Tavera had the opportunity to present his work, Translational Spaces, which he also exhibited at the Galeria de Arte e Pesquisa – UFES throughout the duration of the conference.
Besides the Screen is an international research network that aims to reconfigure the field of screen studies within art. This conference brings together artists and academics that explore digital art to frame growing trends in spatialized image art projects, addressing the new possibilities of digital technologies. Head and Tavera’s participation at this conference, allowed them to engage in conversations about the potential of digital media to expand our perception of space and the moving image. The proceedings of the Besides the Screen 2017 conference will be published in the fall of 2017, which will include an essay on Projected Narratives of Being and Belonging.
As speculative practices accelerate urban transformation, the city adorns itself in images of what it is to become in the future. This future never fully attained leaves these images lingering and fading, dissolving into a ruptured matrix of urban decay and unfinished potential. Rather than reflecting on what architecture could be I reflect on what the future is becoming: faded imprints of spectacular promises.
Dissolving futures explores the future of architecture as it dissolves into the present. It documents the transformation of abandoned buildings and vacant lots, empty premises, into future promises. It presents the replacement of the architecture of the shared public space of the street with a spectacle of speculation as a veil of digitally rendered representation between the lived street-space and the abstract machinations of investment and real estate.
This is an ongoing project started more than ten years ago while photographing the advertising on hoardings and posters around building sites in Berlin. Over a thousand photos from over twenty cities and from four continents have been taken since. One hundred of these have been (so far) selected to be used. The project will take the form an installation with the images projected in a continuous dissolve sequence in the exhibition space.
The first presentation of this project will take place at the Architecture after the Future symposium at the Haus der Architektur, Graz, Austria, opening on June 23, 2017
All photos copyright Paul Landon
Maria Lantin has been invited to perform her Google Daydream VR application, I am Afraid, at the CVR Vancouver 2017 expo on May 6th and 7th. CVR is an expo featuring all that VR & AR has to offer. The expo floor is 3x bigger than last year and will feature demos, games to play, technology to try, entertaining experiences, and much more!
Vancouver Convention Centre West
1055 Canada Place
Saturday, May 6- 10:00AM – 6:00PM & Sunday, May 7-10:00AM – 4:00PM
Anthony Head and Santiago Tavera have been invited to the Besides the Screen 2017 conference from March 31st to June 2nd at the Federal University of Espirito Santo, in Vitoria, Brazil. Besides the Screen is an international research network that aims to reconfigure the field of screen studies within art. This conference brings together artists and academics that explore digital art to frame growing trends in spatialized image art projects, addressing the new possibilities of digital technologies.
During the 7th Besides the Screen conference- Unfolding Images, VR, Volumetric Filmaking and Spatial Control; Anthony Head will be presenting his project, 3D House Visualisation, exploring real-time sensing in a home environment with University of Bristol. Santiago Tavera will present his research on translational and elastic spaces as digital and physical experiences of dislocation and disembodiment. Head and Tavera’s immersive media works, expand the cinematic experience into sensorial and interactive spaces that reframe physical sites, but through different approaches. Elastic Spaces: Projected Narratives of Being and Belonging will further develop by working together on a workshop Head and Tavera are organizing with collaborator and artist Laura Acosta for the International Symposium on Electronic Art and the International Images Festival in Manizales, Colombia in June 2017.
Group exhibition with Shoji Kato, Paul Landon and Marjatta Oja
at Saariaho Järvenpää gallery, Helsinki, opening on May 24, 2017
The exhibition Five corners features work by three artists who reflect on the urban space around the Viiskulma intersection in Helsinki. This landmark site, where five streets cross, demarcates the border between two historically opposing neighbourhoods; inner city development has resulted in a shifting of the economic specificities of the area where a once working class neighbourhood buttressed an affluent one.
The unique layout of the five-corner intersection is referred to in the works in the exhibition. Shoji Kato’s sculpture invoking a miniature landscape suggests a prehistoric geography of hills and passes that led to the unorthodox tracing of the city streets. Paul Landon’s drawing maps a constellation of five-pointed structures that relate to urban architecture and design and to how these are embodied to shape our perception and model our mental geography. Marjatta Oja’s site sculpture uses an array of video channels to present multiple viewpoints on the intersection as told first-hand in interviews with its residents. The ongoing history of the neighbourhood is a background for these accounts suggesting that the urban transformations are outlived and superseded by the everyday lives of those inhabiting it. Kato’s geographical tracings, the rubbings of cobblestones and a photograph of an abandoned quarry, suggest the passage of time and the passing of traffic, human, animal and mechanical, moulding the landscape and shifting the urban setting. Urban transformation is likewise evoked by Landon’s cardboard and wood reliefs of cinema interiors; the disappearance of local cinemas, characterised by the marquee sign of the Merano, a cinema closed over a decade ago, that remains an architectural feature of the intersection, is a symptom of the changing social functions that built space undergoes in the city.
While drawing no conclusions as to the possible futures for the Viiskulma neighbourhoods, Kato, Landon and Oja look to its complex presences and pasts to reflect on its potential.