Bell Tower of False Creek screening at the Noisefloor festival, Staffordshire University, May 2nd 2017

My recently completed short film Bell Tower of False Creek will play at the Noisefloor festival at Staffordshire University, UK, in the International Experimental Film screening at 5pm on May 2nd, 2017.

Noisefloor 2017

Workshop on Listening to the City at the Livable Cities Symposium April 13th 2017

I will be leading a workshop on listening to the city at the intersection of indigenous histories, industrialization, and gentrification at this year’s Livable Cities Symposium, April 13th, 2017, at the Anvil Centre in New Westminster, BC.

Livable Cities 2017

Workshop Title:

Sound / Media / History: Listening at the Intersection of Contested Space on the Fraser River

Abstract:

What can sound tell us about the histories, uses and politics of the spaces we inhabit everyday? In this workshop I will discuss the relationships between listening, technology, and space with specific reference to how the complexities of land use have been represented in the soundtracks of Vancouver-based films and media over the last century. We will then take a group soundwalk in the area around the Anvil Centre, following the rail lines by the Fraser River as we listen for evidence of the intersections between the traditional territory of the Qayqayt First Nation, 20th Century industrial development, and 21st Century gentrification. The walk will be followed by an open discussion in which the audience will be invited to share their experiences of the area with one another, with a particular ear for understanding the relationship between listening, the politics of urban space, and the role of media technologies in fostering engagement with place.

 

Bell Tower of False Creek Premiere at Resonance and Remembrance Symposium April 1st 2017

The new film component of my Bell Tower of False Creek project will have its first public screening at the Resonance and Remembrance Interdisciplinary Bell Studies Symposium at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, next Saturday, April 1st 2017. It has been programmed in the Saturday night concert (details below).

Resonance and Remembrance

Screen Shot 2017-03-25 at 7.05.31 PM

Program Notes:

A thick fog gathers under Vancouver’s Burrard Bridge in the winter of 2013, blotting out the gentrified skyline across the waters of False Creek. It’s the centenary of the first systemic clearance of indigenous residents from Kitsilano Indian Reserve on this site in 1913, and one can almost imagine the air filled with the smoke of shelters set ablaze or the chimneys of industry that settled on these shores thereafter. The sounds of transportation have been a mainstay here since rail lines first cut through the reserve in 1899, trains joining churches in the ringing of bells that defined the boundaries of early settler communities. Industrial urbanization would soon step in to sound out the economic heart of the newly incorporated city, replacing the parishes of old and Native communities older still. Today the trains are gone, but the thumping of bridge traffic in the absence of industry reveals the continuingly shifting status of the contested lands underneath.

Bell Tower of False Creek uses the church bell as metaphor for the traffic on Burrard Bridge as it casts an acoustic profile roughly equivalent to the area recently returned to the Squamish Nation as reserve lands in 2002. Recorded on the 40th anniversary of the World Soundscape Project’s first major case study on the city of Vancouver, the film juxtaposes archival recordings of the WSP members in conversation about the city’s endangered sounds with new audiovisual material exploring current indigenous presence around the bridge. Amidst the fog, listeners are invited to imagine the sound of traffic noise recasting the bells of old as markers of territorial boundaries, challenging stereotypical biases against urban noise pollution (typical of the work of early acoustic ecology) in order to rethink narratives that posit the death of indigenous culture in the face of modernization.

New Issue of Offscreen on Takashi Miike at Fantasia

I was guest-editor on the latest issue of Offscreen covering Japanese filmmaker Takashi Miike’s visit to the Fantasia International Film Festival to receive his Lifetime Achievement Award last summer.

Offscreen-Miike-Cover

 

* from Webster’s Encyclopedic Dictionary of the English Language, Canadian Edition.  New York: Lexicon Publications, Inc., 1988.