Digital Carnival 2018: AIR

2018 Digital Carnival: Featured Artists - Lisa Birke and Terrance Houle

We acknowledge that this exhibition takes place on unceded Indigenous land belonging to the Coast Salish peoples, including the territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) Nations.

Get ready for Digital Carnival 2018!

Prepare to discover new worlds and encounter the unexpected through more than a dozen avant-garde installations that tackle everything from the latest technology to the most pressing geopolitical issues. Participating artists range from the local (Coast Salish Territories) to the global (Bern, Switzerland), each bringing a unique perspective on the complex relationship between art, nature and technology. With Air as the central theme, this year’s exhibition explores the boundaries of the physical world through interactive installations, immersive video projections, virtual reality demos, and more.

Featuring Terrance Houle and Lisa Birke, the Featured Artist Program includes a special exhibition and performance – Different Ways. Different Ways is a collaborative multi-disciplinary, multi-media, community engaged project that weaves together new and old art forms to reimagine first encounters and to explore contemporary relations between settlers and the Indigenous community. The exhibition will be presented in the Richmond Art Gallery for a limited two-day run, with live performances starting in the gallery at 8pm each night, and an artist talk at 4pm on Saturday, September 1.

From August 31 to September 1, experience one of the most unique multimedia extravaganzas in the Lower Mainland as part of the 2018 Richmond World Festival!


Presented by Cinevolution Media Arts Society in partnership with Richmond Art Gallery.
Guest Curator: Wynne Palmer

Featured Artists Programme

// DIFFERENT WAYS – Terrance Houle and Lisa Birke

Different Ways is a collaborative project between Terrance Houle, an interdisciplinary artist and member of the Kainai Nation (Blood Tribe) and Lisa Birke, settler, video artist, and Assistant Professor of Digital and Extended Media at the University of Saskatchewan. This project takes to heart the call to action for all Canadians to begin a conversation—to listen and to learn—in a bid for reconciliation.

Through ceremony, music, live performance, animation and innovative projection, the slippery and unsteady understanding of our shared history and stories will be explored at events and festivals across the country, demonstrating how dialogue and reclamation can steady the course in Indigenous and non-Indigenous relations.  Live performance will be combined with projection in a montage of video clips, underwater footage, 360 degree video and live-capture animation created in community outreach workshops remixed into an expansive experience. The artistic and poetic vision is one that will allow the viewer to imagine a better future; a future of coming together despite, and more importantly because of our “different ways”.


Live Performance  August 31, 8:00pm
Live Performance  September 1, 8:00pm
Artist Talk  September 1, 4:00pm

Richmond Art Gallery
7700 Minoru Gate, Richmond BC


August 31, 10:00am – 9:30pm
September 1, 10:00am – 9:30pm

Richmond Art Gallery
7700 Minoru Gate, Richmond BC


Terrance Houle

Born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada and raised on the Great Plains of North America, Terrance Houle is an internationally recognized interdisciplinary media artist and a proud member of the Kainai Nation (Blood Tribe). Involved with Aboriginal communities all his life, he has traveled to reservations throughout North America participating in Powwow dancing and native ceremonies. Houle makes use of performance, photography, video & film, music and painting in his work. Likewise, Houle’s practice includes various tools of mass dissemination such as billboards and vinyl bus signage. ​His work has been exhibited across Canada, the United States, Australia, the UK and Europe.

Lisa Birke

Lisa Birke is an award winning Canadian experimental short filmmaker who situates between the traditions of painting, digital video and performance art. She has had solo exhibitions across Canada and her short films screened at film/video festivals and media centres internationally. Lisa examines notions of ‘self’ through the lens of gender, bringing the cultural tropes of woman into focus and into question. Filmed unaccompanied in the Canadian landscape, absurd yet insightful performative acts become entangled in nuanced and complex narratives in single and multichannel video works that make reference to art history, mythology and popular culture. Revealing what lies beneath the surface of femininity, her work toys with a conclusion that is problematic, comic-tragic, and most essentially, human.

Featured Artist Workshop

Speaking Through – Animation Workshop for Indigenous Youth

Our bodies are like radios, constantly receiving and transmitting signals + stories from the world around us. What happens when we bring these invisible worlds to life?

In this workshop, draw, animate and record voices that speak through you with guidance and support from award winning video artist Lisa Birke. Together, we will bring these voices to life using a combination of traditional and digital techniques.

Student’s works will be shown as part of the 2018 Featured Artist Exhibition, Different Ways.


July 9 -13, 2018
Richmond Media Lab

Video Mapping Workshop by Intentions Lab

Video Mapping Workshop

Move away from the screen or monitor and paint with light on the world around you!

Get a hands on introduction to video mapping with the support of Mark Nazemi and Maryam Mobini, allowing artists to go beyond the restrictions of a traditional screen. Using Madmapper software specifically designed for projection mapping, students will learn how to incorporate interactive tools, design, and map their projects to the exterior of the Richmond Cultural Centre.

Student’s works will be shown as part of Digital Carnival 2018: AIR.


August 26, 2018
Richmond Media Lab

Digital Carnival Exhibiting Artists Programme


August 31 and September 1, 2018, 7:30pm – 10:00pm
Global Village at Minoru Park
7700 Minoru Gate, Richmond BC

Thin Air Between Values - George Ho

Air immediately links to transparency.
Air exists, but is not tangible.
Not until something is flying or floating, like leaves or hair.

Thin Air Between Values evokes a sense of something hidden, something transparent, something we sense but do not take action upon. What sits behind the monetary levitation installation is a question: How important is equality? If technology is weaving international values in a global village cocktail, is the human race entering a utopia of absolute equality, or expending an invisible border of personal comfort zones?

George Ho
George Ho

George Ho’s interest in media arts began in the 1980s in Hong Kong and continued with his move to Canada to further his studies. He acquired a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Victoria and built a body of work incorporating current digital technology. Currently living and working in Vancouver, George continues to create sculpture and installations for exhibitions throughout North America and Asia.

Aftermaths - Isabelle Hayeur

Aftermaths was made following an artist’s residency in New Orleans. The video roams through the altered landscapes of southern Louisiana, where traces of hurricane Katrina’s passage are still very much to be seen. These areas are plagued by many environmental problems, especially the poor neighborhoods, where people have to survive in the shadow of the refineries.

Isabelle Hayeur
Isabelle Hayeur

Known for her photographs and her experimental videos, Isabelle Hayeur received her Masters of Fine Art from the Université du Québec à Montréal. She has also realized several site-specific installations and public art commissions. Her work is situated within a critical approach to the environment, urban development and to social conditions.

Respire - Mirjana Prpa, Kıvanç Tatar and Philippe Pasquier

Respire guides its users to reconnect with an embodied experience, often lost in our interaction with new and emerging technologies. Built upon mindfulness principles, in this Virtual Reality piece, breathing is utilized as an object of the user’s attention through impermanence of virtual landscapes and audio environment. The changes in Respire are generated directly from changes in breathing patterns, as the user becomes aware of their breath and the agency they have in the environment.

Project Credits:

Mirjana Prpa: VR concept, design, development
Kıvanç Tatar: Audio / AI system design, development
Philippe Pasquier: VR and AI system advisor

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Mirjana Prpa

Mirjana’s interest in space shifted from the physical to the virtual in 2013. The virtual worlds Mirjana creates invite visitors to reconnect with themselves, allowing space and place for personal transformation. The main principle is technology supporting rather than oppressing, and the transformative value of the interaction is not in the piece of technology, but in the users who interact with it. Mirjana’s work has been exhibited in Canada, Brazil, and USA. Currently, Mirjana is completing her PhD in Interactive Arts and Technology at the Metacreation Lab, and researching virtual worlds, mindfulness, micro-phenomenology, and the potential of immersive experiences to make us more human.

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Kıvanç Tatar

Kıvanç Tatar is “a worker in rhythms, frequencies, and intensities;” playing trumpet and electronics, composing experimental music, and researching artificial intelligence on the applications of music. His work has been exhibited in Germany, Italy, Romania, Austria, Brazil, Australia, USA (New York and Atlanta), Canada (Vancouver and Montreal), South Korea, and Turkey; including the events Mutek_IMG, the cultural program at Rio Olympics 2016, and the Ars Electronica Festival 2017 (with the theme Artificial Intelligence). Currently, he is a PhD candidate at the School of Interactive Arts and Technology, Simon Fraser University. In the Metacreation Lab, he is working on musical performance with artificial intelligence, Musical Metacreation, audio synthesis, generative art, and musical composition.

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Philippe Pasquier

Philippe Pasquier works on creative processes and generative systems. He is both a scientist specialized in artificial intelligence, a multidisciplinary artist, an educator, and a community leader. His contributions range from theoretical research in multi-agent systems, computational creativity and machine learning to applied artistic research and practice in digital art, computer music, and generative art. Philippe is an associate professor in the School for Interactive Arts and Technology at Simon Fraser University.

Akasha - Sean Wirz and Hannah Rocchi

Akasha is the all-embracing fifth element. It moves effortlessly on the shores of the world. It overcomes gravity, explores the deepest of waters and fuels with its power the eternal flame of life. Akasha knows no space, no time, no fixed form.

This high-tension short offers the viewer a surreal encounter with the sovereign of AIR. Akasha is embodied by a performer who moves to the futuristic song Ants by Los Angeles based musician edIT. His quintessential electronic music contrasts heavily with the metaphysical theme of the film. The result is a vibrant and ephemeral glimpse into the power of the universe. through graceful movement.


a film by Hannah Rocchi and Sean Wirz

directed by Sean Wirz

created by Simon Iannelli and Sean Wirz

music:  «Ants» (2004) by edIT, The Glitch Mob / Glass Air Records

editor: Sean Wirz

sound design: Sean Wirz

VFX: Jean-Christophe Dupasquier, Sean Wirz

grading: Sean Wirz

behind the scenes: Marlen Schmid

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Sean Wirz

Sean Wirz is a director and producer based in Bern, Switzerland and works as an independent filmmaker. He studied in Perth, Zurich and New York City. Sean’s films are multifaceted, eclectic and combine powerful images with complex sound.

Hannah Rocchi

Hannah Rocchi is a producer, art historian and PhD candidate at the University of Bern, Switzerland. She has studied art and dance history and works currently as manager of the Sommerakademie Paul Klee. Hannah produces and supports independent art and film projects.

Icarus RBTD: Icarus Rebooted - Tony Bowden

Icarus RBTD: Icarus Rebooted, is an ongoing focus, spanning over two decades, concerning clouds, wings and air. This installation presents an alternate interpretation and expands on the theories, which caused the mythological character, Icarus, to fatally plummet from the sky. What once was considered lost forever, can now be rebooted to live once more.

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Tony Bowden

Tony Bowden received his Masters degree from Case Western University in Arts and Arts Education, and Bachelors degree from Cleveland Institute of Art and Design. Tony teaches at the Richmond Arts and Cultural Centre and received the Educator of the Year Award in 2017 from the City of Richmond’s Richmond Arts Awards. He currently resides in Vancouver, BC.

Still Necessary - Angelica Poversky

Still Necessary is a media art installation poetry-film loop. The piece, highlights the pause between moments, the air of stillness, and the way air is like the universe’s natural rest. The recurring images of nature, love, companionship all point toward a natural process of relaxation and rest. This piece, celebrates the pause between a breath in and a breath out.

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Angelica Poversky

Currently pursuing a Bachelor of Media Studies at UBC, Angelica is a spoken word and media artist seeking the intersection between poetry and media arts.  She has presented at The Festival of Recorded Movement and is currently completing her first two short films. Angelica is a former Richmond Arts Award winner and former curator of the Greenflux Media Arts exhibition at The Center for Interactive Research on Sustainability.

Con-tain-er - Hiba Ali

How does the global shipping industry shape your world?  Shipping traverses all of the elements, air, water, sea and land and all types of mobile vehicles. Con-tain-er examines this history and recalls the movement of people and goods: the Silk Road, spice trade, triangular trade including slavery, Colombian exchange to the most current, refugees.

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Hiba Ali

Hiba Ali just completed her Masters in Fine Arts in Transmedia from University of Austin – Texas and will be a PhD candidate at Queen’s University. A new media artist, writer and musician from Chicago, Illinois, her digital and sculptural installations and performances focus on the history of objects that are produced from global circuits and technological and sociological codes. She conducts workshops with open-source technologies, reading groups about technology, personal and colonial histories.

Weathervane – asmaa al-issa and Patrick Blenkarn

The pixel has a long history. As a fundamental building block of art and craft for thousands of years, it has weathered the storms of change and aesthetic reinvention—long before becoming the essence of digital screen arts. Its survival, through traditional aesthetic practices, is dramatized in this installation by colliding – through wind – pattern work and mechanical/industrial elements.

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asmaa al-issa

asmaa al-issa’s received a Masters of Fine Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies from the School of Contemporary Arts, Simon Fraser University. Within her practice she contemplates different ways of knowing mainly through drawing, sculpture, installation and photography.

Patrick Blenkarn

Patrick Blenkarn received a Master of Fine Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies from Simon Fraser University. His works are often performance-based—and they frequently emerge from his thinking (and writing) about theatre, philosophy, and cinema.

Drawing on their respective backgrounds, asmaa and Patrick create works together responding to their common interests in repetition, language, and the digital sublime.

165708 - Josephine Massarella

165708 was shot entirely in 16mm black and white film using single frame photography, employing in-camera techniques and chemical manipulation of processed film to produce an eidetic study of temporal elasticity. Techniques include stop motion, time-lapse, light painting, flicker, tinting, and toning.

Special thanks to the family and the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre for allowing Cinevolution Media Art Society to present Josephine’s work in memoriam.

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Josephine Massarella

Josephine Massarella was an independent filmmaker based in Hamilton, Ontario. She received an MA in Cultural Studies from Athabasca University and a BA in Film from the University of British Columbia. Josephine taught introductory filmmaking and cinema studies, often working in 16mm film, and her award-winning shorts have screened worldwide.

Our Partners and Sponsors

An event like this requires support from many quarters. We are thankful to all of the participating artists, supporters and volunteers who give their time and energy to this program so tirelessly.

We also wish to acknowledge the generous support of the Canada Council for the Arts, BC Arts Council, Richmond World Festival, Richmond Art Gallery, VIVO Media Arts Centre and Hammer and Tong, without which this year’s Digital Carnival would not be possible.

Illustration by: Jenniffer Tai