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

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Chronometric media: dream, film and creativity in the digital age

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

This paper represents the written component of my MFA graduating project, and was written to accompany a multi-media projection, screened at VIVO studios on July 20th, 2009. The project, entitled Dreamtime Jetztzeit, explores how mass media forms and technological change alter the collective and individual experience of time and space, and how these types of spatiotemporal changes can affect the way we experience the world. Focussing on the transition from analog to digital as a unique and transitory place from which to take stock, Dreamtime Jetztzeit traces a series of constructed binaries - film/old versus digital/new, film/dream versus digital/awake - and combines the political history of mass media change with sociological concerns and cognitive theory. Produced from the point of view of a practicing media artist, Dreamtime Jetztzeit uses both old and new technologies to explore the social and political implications of media change.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
C
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

Form faces out

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

The cinema presents us with the perpetual “becoming” of the movement-image. But, according to Giorgio Agamben, our relationship to the image is characterized by a desire to “capture,” inhibiting our ability to see images this way. Understood as an act of framing, this capture (a drive toward the inside of image), manifests in our acts of looking. Engaging the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze on cinema, Form Faces Out considers the concept of the out-of-field– that which relates the “captured” part to the Open whole. Through reflections on the thesis project The Here To Gathered and other works of art shown recently in Vancouver, the out-of-field is seen to destabilize the frame, making possible a form of futurity that has no known characteristics other than that it is “to come.” This form of futurity opens images up to the meaning of circulation– the sharing of being.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
J
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

HWY 99: creating a Canadian cinematic realism in the place of industrial transformation

Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

The Sea to Sky Corridor, a seventy-kilometre stretch of highway north of Vancouver, is changing irrevocably. Globalization is in the process of transforming an industrial resource economy into a recreational profit-centre. Three projects were undertaken to examine this transformation: Woodfibre, an installation about a recently decommissioned pulp mill in Howe Sound; Haiphong, a series of photographs addressing the transformation of Canadian raw materials in Vietnam; and HWY 99, my graduating film, which examines a transitional moment in the life of a paramedic employed by a multinational highway construction firm currently developing the Corridor. Each of these artworks is a response to the human cost of globalization in a small British Columbia community far from corporate boardrooms. Viewed as a triptych, these works address the question of how to represent the ubiquity of globalization in relation to personal experience.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
C
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

Fighting myopia: from writer/performer to writer/director in Free Range and Palms Down Like a Rainbow

Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

This document examines the processes used in the creation of my first year project Free Range – a solo theatre piece I wrote and performed – and my thesis project Palms Down Like a Rainbow: A Folktale Eulogy – a multi-character piece I wrote and directed. The discussion of Free Range investigates strategies for writing as a performer, engaging in improvisations with a director and a musician. The discussion on Palms Down Like a Rainbow focuses on writing with a director's sensibility, using creation sessions with an ensemble of performers improvising around a source. The challenges of shifting from writer/performer to writer/director invite questions about the playwright's authority, and the line between an open and closed text. This exploration of collaboration, decision-making, values and praxis, leads to a personal understanding of the relationship between process and product.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
D
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

sound.garden.scape: Gastown, a virtual soundwalk

Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

As the urban soundscape gets louder, many listeners are exchanging their acoustic soundscape for an electro-acoustic one. This sonic mediation is made mobile through the use of personal portable audio (ppa) devices such as the iPod. This project seeks to understand where technology connects the natural and the virtual using the tradition of soundwalking. sound.garden.scape: Gastown, used ppa devices to create an interactive immersive aural environment that re-presented Vancouver's Gastown area. Using compositional methods and the dedicated attention to listening found in soundwalking practice, the project functioned as a virtual soundwalk, allowing listeners to move through space and time reacting and interacting with an aural space completely separate from the installation venue. Within this installation listeners used their ppa devices actively to seek out and listen to the same urban noise they normally use ppa to block out.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
B
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

Moving through time

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

A phenomenological adoption of lived experience acts as a touchstone for my graduate project titled through and this supporting document. through is a contemporary dance work, performed by two dancers with original music, video, and animation.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
R
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

Returns

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

Returns is an episodic performance piece, consisting of music, storytelling, and video segments. Weaving together a wide variety of elements, the work explores complexity as a strategy for expression. Stories from the artist’s family - successive generations of Finns immigrating temporarily to Canada, from the 1920s to the present day - form the through-line for the piece, in the form of monologues, home movies, and a lecture. The notion of time as a layered place is explored, by using material from a span of decades, and by discussing theories concerning the permanence of sounds. The stories that are told have decades-wide gaps between them, and in these gaps runs a parallel musical journey, tracing ‘Finnishness’ through folk music, tango, and contemporary influences. Compositional strategies from through-composed to free improvisation are employed.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
O
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

Chewing chewing chewing social space

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

for the shy is a multimedia installation based on a partially built, partially dismantled re-creation of the artist’s kitchen. It examines the desire to understand care and decay in social space, and to reckon with shared agency: given that sociality always occurs between agents, how can one locate an individual ethic of care? The paper begins by examining theories of sociality and interconnectivity based on eating. It examines sculptural action as “chewing” social space – as separating desire-as-lack (Lacan) from desiring-production (Deleuze and Guattari), and separating the “thing-ness” from the “sign-ness” of objects (Peirce). It considers the work within the contexts of architectural ornamentation and immersive installation art, and finally explores the problematic of communicating about the non-communicative state of shyness. The work locates care as an intermediary force between creation and destruction of subjectivities and social structures, both breaking and maintaining the bonds of socialization.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
L
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

What the muck: Agitating boundaries in performance

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

This text serves as an accompanying document to the performance work Muck, first produced on May 10th, 2007. Muck is both a performance and an installation. Performed by four actors and a pianist, the work runs in a loop, and alternates between a series of gestures and songs. The first performance was set in a small black room within a larger white gallery space; the spectators entered and left the performance space as they desired. The purpose of this document is to examine the production of Muck as it relates to both performance art and theatre. It proceeds to define Muck (and my broader practice) not by the distinctions put upon performance art and theatre but rather by the proximity and relationship of the audience to the work. By destabilizing expected structures of viewer/performance interaction my work attempts to activate the threshold between the two.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
P
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)

Autobiography and self-portrait as resistive form in queer moving-image

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

This paper accompanies a multiple projection moving-image. It examines the subversive representations of unfixed queer identity in DIY (do-it-yourself) autobiography and self-portrait. In the fictional telling of a fairy who leaves home to find others like herself, the narrative references journey myths from popular culture, religion, literature, and theatre. A post-modern pastiche that plays between reality and fantasy, the artist uses herself as subject and her body as object to represent the multiple personalities existing in one queer changing body. The form is an experiment in mutable cinema – one that moves between parodying mainstream narrative, drawing from expanded cinema, video art, handmade filmmaking and animation – to create a queer changing art form. The paper discusses how self-representation, -production, and -distribution gives queer feminist women the agency as resistive subjects to create personal myths of an unfixed, denormalized, identity.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
C
Department: 
School for the Contemporary Arts - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.F.A.)