Contemporary Arts - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Sense, Reset

Author: 
Date created: 
2019-06-12
Abstract: 

Lief Hall is an interdisciplinary artist working as a composer, singer-songwriter, performance and installation artist. Hall’s sound and music compositions incorporate extended vocal technique, processed voice and electronic music production to explore experimental and ‘pop’ music forms. Projecting onto sculptural objects made of paper vellum or textile, Hall’s installation and performance works explore tensions between material and virtual worlds. These spaces are activated by the movement of viewers or performers, with choreography developed through processes of improvisation and embodied research. Hall’s graduate project Sense, Reset is an audiovisual installation that explores virtual experiences of nature, land and place. The installation looks at ways in which globalism and the commodification of nature has complicated our understanding, perception and relationship to the material world. Sense, Reset traverses the audiovisual landscapes of online healing culture, enticing the spectator into an immersive environment; an illusory, sensorial, post-geographic space.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
etd20387-lief-hall-Sense, Reset_Documentation1.mp4
etd20387-lief-hall-Sense, Reset_Documentation2.mp4
Senior supervisor: 
Eldritch Priest
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

All that glitters is not gold...

Author: 
Date created: 
2019-05-03
Abstract: 

The phrase “All that glitters is not gold” refers to seemingly universal life lessons where visible perceptions of beauty and value are revealed as a façade. The phrase is also akin to golden, shiny metals, which appear valuable but are actually not as valuable – such as the misidentification of pyrite as gold. In this project, it refers to the imperfect connections between land, identity, location and belonging(s). It is a nod to the sparkle of copper in the project, a material that glitters but is not gold. All that Glitters is Not Gold... is also a reference to the name of the institutional space at Simon Fraser University, Goldcorp Centre for the Arts.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Sabine Bitter
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

Music for the augmented pipe organ

Author: 
Date created: 
2019-01-15
Abstract: 

Music for the Augmented Pipe Organ is a composition for a 74-rank Casavant pipe organ which incorporates newly devised digital controls systems. The work stemmed from research into the confluences between the pipe organ and contemporary electronic and digital music practices. With a reflexive attention to the organ’s spatial context and unique embodiment of the harmonic series, the work explores new sonic terrains that emerge through a digital approach to the world’s oldest mechanical synthesizer. Through this process of hybridizing acoustic and digital sonic imaginations, the work creates a dialog between the vibrant material and ethereal space of the organ and the techniques of electronic and post-digital music forms. Site-specific elements such as the church’s architecture and interior acoustics are further incorporated into the work through the use of a controlled feedback system and projection mapping, considering the resonant relationships between the instrument and its surrounding space as a generative element interwoven into the composition.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
etd20255-george-rahi-musicfortheaugmentedpipeorgan.mp4
Senior supervisor: 
Sabrina Schroeder
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

iihksiisiinatsiistostiimao nipaitapiitsiin

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2019-03-15
Abstract: 

iihksiisiinatsiistostiimao nipaitapiitsiin uncovers and puts into practice an Indigenous performance-creation paradigm. As a dancer, performance artist, musician and composer, I incorporate ritual as a way of inviting the viewer to become an active part of the work itself. My vision is to continue to investigate de-colonization methodologies in performance creation through my own embodied experiences. Indigenous Contemporary Dance has been a growing field, and the field of Critical Indigenous Dance Studies has not grown at the same rate. Historically, Indigenous dance artists and scholars have had to engage in western pedagogy and theory in order to discuss their work. We are now in a resurgence era, where, Indigenous dance artists and scholars are now able to discuss, theorize and create works grounded in Indigenous ontologies, epistemologies, ethics, and paradigms. This performance presents research, context, and highly structured improvisation in an Indigenous dance work theoretically and ethically based in Cree and Blackfoot ways-of-knowing.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Appendix B: Video Documentation of Live Performance 1
Senior supervisor: 
Robert Kitsos
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

Memories For The Future

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-09-10
Abstract: 

Memories For The Future is a wall-mounted photographic and sculptural installation emerging from my archive of affective family snapshots from the 1990s and 2000s. Everyday textiles, bodily substances, and shadows are abstracted from these fragmented photographs to form accompanying wooden cut-outs. This doubling adheres to the more classic Freudian notion of the uncanny, being a thing or event encountered in a psychologically unsettling context. The unsettling childhood narratives display private desires, passionate behaviours and domestic situations, first as photographic spectacles, and more recently as aesthetic objects in a gallery setting. The absurd child recognizes how objects, places, and thoughts become invested with both happiness and unhappiness. The project thus rejects good cheer and common sense to delight in the abject nature of point-and-shoot photography, reflecting another side of photography, in relation to today’s performative selfie culture.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Sabine Bitter
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

Black onyx : Emotional responses to music and sounds

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-11-30
Abstract: 

Black Onyx is a musical concert work for flute, cello and piano with electronics. The piece has five sections of music and sounds targeting five human emotions: Anger, Sadness, Surprise, Contempt and Fear. Some sections are written in reference to memory and the practice of music therapy. The entire work is based on research of music psychology including the psychological Circumplex model developed by James A. Russell. The work invites the attention of the listener to the auditory world of mental illness and human sufferings to create atmospheres of negative emotional responses. By the end of the performance, the psychological atmosphere shifts to positivity. The five human emotions are the primary focus of this project, both in terms of induction and perception. The individual listening experiences, such as feelings of tension and calm are left to the listener.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
Senior supervisor: 
Owen Underhill
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

Weather Pattern #6 The Funeral Pageant

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-10-02
Abstract: 

Weather Pattern #6: The Funeral Pageant was an outdoor, public procession that considered community and ecology as collaborators while contemplating themes of mortality and transformation. Taking place over a distance of 10.5 kilometres across Vancouver and Burnaby, the project was a carnivalesque procession that included large-scale puppets, kites, aeolian harps, and lanterns. Travelling through residential, industrial and forested areas, the procession involved a series of participatory events, all based around the journey of a ten foot tall puppet of a human figure as it walked into night. The procession ended in the dark of night with the puppet, whose body was disintegrating from the rain, being destroyed in a feast of noise, red wine and revelry.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
etd20005--ian-mcfarlane-Weather_pattern6_final_cuth264.mp4
Senior supervisor: 
Nicole Lewis
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

Nobody. Unclenching the fist.

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-09-12
Abstract: 

Nobody. Unclenching the fist. is an assemblage of different media (photography and drawing) and materials (wood and soil). In this Frankenstein-esque architectural intervention, readings collide with materials, and actual geopolitical events collide with images of spectacularization.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Judy Radul
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

Books

Date created: 
2018-01-29
Abstract: 

Books, conceived and directed by Patrick Blenkarn, is a performance with and about books. Over 70min, four performers perform a series of tasks with books upon an empty stage. In the process, they sculpt an encounter of ideas and images: of chaos, of devotion, of exhaustion, of knowledge.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
Senior supervisor: 
Cole Lewis
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.

“Grey matter”: The challenge of maintaining harmonic consistency and thematic ambiguity in the age of artificial intelligence

Author: 
Date created: 
2018-05-28
Abstract: 

“Grey Matter”, a forty-two minute, 4-movement suite for string quartet and Disklavier (Yamaha’s automated piano), ambiguously explores themes of aging (and the body’s attendant neural/psychic deterioration and social alienation) in the age of automation, digital technology and artificial intelligence. Another thematic layer implies the following questions: will the roles of creative and performing artists become obsolete, like so many other professions are feared to become, with accelerating automation and artificial intelligence? Is technology bestowing upon us a utopian or dystopian future? Conceived with symmetrical harmonic processes, the work layers and juxtaposes sequentially diminishing harmonies (and diminishing performance personnel) with contrapuntal procedures. Alluding to a wide range of historical sources as disparate as Joseph Haydn, Robert Schumann, Béla Bartók, Charlie Chaplin, Kurt Vonnegut, Lee “Scratch” Perry and Spike Jonze, “Grey Matter” culminates with a collage of Bachian and Lisztian materials feeding back and reverberating through circular 4-channel electroacoustic diffusion.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Arne Eigenfeldt
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: School for the Contemporary Arts
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.F.A.