Ideas Digital Forum 2018: Scott Benesiinaabandan
And I have the privilege this morning of, introducing. You to Scott Benny sea abandon, Scott. Is an initiation. Abbe intermedia, artist who works primarily in photography, printmaking and video he's. Recently completed international. Residences, at Parramatta, artists studio and Australia. Context. Gallery and dairy north, of Ireland and was. Awarded the University of Lethbridge, Royal Institute, of Technology I air, residency, in 2013. Along. With international, collaborative rep projects, in both the UK and in Ireland, he's currently completing, his MFA at Concordia, University, he's, been awarded, multiple grants, from the Canada Council for the Arts Manitoba. Arts Council and the Winnipeg Arts. Council as well there's. A list on his CV, about the exhibitions, and group exhibitions, that he's had in the past but, I thought I'll skip those and just talk about all the ones he's in right now, he's. Currently in a group exhibition at the Carleton University Art, Gallery the Koffler gallery in Toronto, and in. The. RMG, exhibition. In ah Bowen that's in the Far gallery, and, we're. So, privileged to have him as part of that exhibition that Danielle print up curated. For us so, please join me in welcoming Scott. So. I'm just gonna set up my digital, technology, timer. Okay. Buju. Melissa, Disney cast mind and oh damn, alex, foote on g montreal, dongji. My. Name is scott, originally. From lack school fascinations. I. Currently. Reside for, the last almost, six years in. Montreal. Initially. I was going to Oh Thank You Muhammad for when. You said about, people who do not respond, to emails for three weeks I thought you were talking to me so I went to respond to emails and I apologized to Linda for my tardy. And I said I'm, not the easiest one to get in touch of. So. When. I was considering what to what to talk about. For. This presentation. This. Is a piece that's in an oven next. Door and I. Was, gonna do a chronological. So. Sorry, how does this work just let me see. She's. The UH. Just. The. Okay. So. I just put my website, up just because some of the references that might make are not in the slideshow and maybe you could just there probably owns online, so I. Was. Gonna go I start in a kind of chronological. Way. With psychic. History home, Montreal. But. As I started I started thinking about it and sort of considering, what. What. Is most relevant to me in terms of digital, technology, and sort of image and art making practice. I, thought that it, was difficult I had to go back that's five years which is forever in sort of an art making, art. Making years to, like consider what where what was I thinking when, I was making, these pieces and, these. Ideas sort of. Continue. To fluoresce and grow, different branches, on that tree and I, thought, it would be easier to start. Further. Further, down further closer to what I'm doing right now I think. One of the most the. Easiest project, that I can talk about what, the impact on an individual, artist. In. Terms of a digital technology, is. My. My. Interface and my sort of use. Of VR as a digital technology. So. This this, the. Project that I'll talk most about is blueberry, pie under a Martian sky, and. This is a VR piece that was commissioned, through, a consortium, of initiative. For indigenous features TIFF. Imagine. It a festival and pink back and. This was sort of, commissioned. For. 2017. So last year's imaginative. Festival sort of and TIFF, festival sort of premiered, the, four pieces and it was a commission with, myself. Post, commodity Kent. Muckman and Danis, Goulet. And. So. I was commissioned through initiative. For indigenous features. Which. Is out of Concordia, and and, co-directed. With Jason. Lewis and Scott, knotty Fred Neto and they're. Very important because I think they've. Been super supportive of me for the last almost, six years since I've been in Montreal the reason I am in Montreal is because six years ago or almost six years ago they brought me out for a year-long Canada, Council new media creation. Residency. And so, and this, is sort of jumping. Back to these pieces that, are, there these are the pieces that sort of initially, came. Out of that residency. And. So me. Being in this sort of residency, space with, these amazing, technologically. Proficient. People, using. Technologies, that I've never heard of like processing, like they're do we know like a.
Myriad. Via they're sort of open source technologies, sort. Of exposed my, practice, two ways. I can incorporate new technologies. Into, that practice and so. Skip. Ahead three, years they. Approached me again and said would you like to do this commission in a VR in. This VR world and so the idea was to create. Four. Pieces. That. Adjust, to. Consider to consider, what indigenous, communities, might look like 150. Years into the future and this was a response to. The. Canada, 150 fifty sort of problems, that were posed I guess two, years ago now. So. I said yeah this is great I had, never worked in VR I didn't, really know much about VR, but, I'm always, interested. In in new technologies, and what that they can, ways. I can use that into my practice and to preserve the, ideas that I'm concerned with and so. Blueberry. Pie under Martian sky was. There was a steep. Learning curve, over the course of a year it, also allowed, me to. Really. Get into. And. Engage with spaces, that I didn't. Really know how to do that as an artist before that that includes like sort of looking, at origin stories and traditional, stories and sacred stories and those sacred spaces and so, I, only. Have two of the slides, from, the piece here. But. It's. It's an immersive. VR. Experience. That. Draws. On sort of the, original stories, that we have as as, additional. Bay people and sort. Of read. Imagines. That as a as, a viewer, as you go through the experience and so. Using. VR as that sort of interface, with these old stories was, this sort of revelation, to me in terms of how I can be, grounded, in these. Histories. In. In a very visceral and very embodied, way. Outside. Of just being like. These sacred ceremonial. Stories, and so. I think. One. Of the one of the ones, of the impactful things of these technologies, that had was it. Allowed me that interface, with these histories, and with these stories and with the language in a way that it wasn't even considering, before I learned. About VR, or, in, these digital technologies and. So. So. That's one of the sort of impacts the immediate, impacts that like, using, these new digital technologies, has been an artist. So. Project. To so that the whole project with the four pieces were called 2167. And it. Toured Canada and. The states and. I think went to Berlin, this. Spring, and. I think it may be like 40. Different communities and the beautiful thing about. 2167. Is they're they're amazing. Thing about what. VR offers. As an artist and art institutions, is accessibility. So. All. Of these all, of these communities all it took was to. Pack for headsets. Samsung, gear VR into, a backpack and fly. Into remarked remote villages, and so. This. Is probably, my favorite most, this is my favorite, photo I've ever taken of my, art practice what. You're looking at here is I, started a project in. Kimkim. Inlet which. Is a flying community in northern BC and.
What. We're seeing here is. 2167. Being. Shown in, a big house, and. What you're looking at their background is, Bo. Dick's carvings, because he's from this community and, at the same time. Tying. In the contemporary sort, of accessibility. That these these technologies, allow. Individual. Artists, and communities access to these artworks. But. Also the. Fact that I have to say this is that. This morning is that. Lawrence. Paul, I'm. Not gonna I'm not gonna butcher the name I got it correct it today this morning yeah, quail a Tong. In, 1992. Did. A piece. Called. Inherent. Rights vision rates and he. Did this to Banff New Media Center and he did a PR piece in 1992. And, so for me that was sort of this time-traveling. Connection. Between, we. Think, VR is like something very contemporary but that comes in waves and like one of the first waves that. Sort of didn't. Take hold but it was still out there was in. 1992, with, Laurence Paul's piece and so. I. Think. These technology, is sort of connect. Not only, communities. In a lateral way like now we can connect to, all these lured isolated, communities and present, these stories in the contemporary, art pieces but. Also connect. On, a sort of in, a temporal, way with. Previous. Artworks you know and so for, me this is like one of the sort of, everything. That, I really considering, and really find, empowering. About these technologies in one photo these young generations, were so engrossed in sort of being, immersed in these in. These worlds and these stories that we were telling in, a way that I've never really seen I've seen kids run, through galleries. Engaging. With art workshops. But, when you see a kid put on a VR headset it's something that really really. Resonates. With them you know and I think that. There's. A lot of potential there as art. Organizations, I think and also as artists as an art practice themselves, and, so. So. Blueberry. Pie was sort of in. The, ideas. Around. Engaging. With the, ideas of the sacred histories and sacred stories and, notions, of land in place and memory that. Showed, up in blueberry pirated Martian sky. Started, with. Early. Residence earlier earlier residences, like. The. Residency, I did with Aptech, and OBX labs in 2013. And, even before that these ideas started with a 3-month Parramatta, residency, again supported. By Canada Council, in. In. Terms of ideas. Of. Indigeneity. Where, where, knowledge, is located, and, how. Indigenous, people access, these things. And. One of the things that was really really. Keen. On is the fact that we're talking about contemporary, digital technology, and said how they, connect, and expand our communities, but I always. Wanted to bring back that this is called a juice icon and this is called a shaking tent ceremony, and this, is a technologies that we used a. Long. Time ago to connect our communities in. The, same way that we use the Internet today and so, I think it's, very interesting to be to. Present these, old technologies, of connection. And. And. Knowledge. Making, and world, making, in.
This. New digital technology, so it's, very part to know that these new technologies, are not. New. Totally there's just a new iteration of a lot of other things that have gone on before so I love, this I love this actually piece in this because it is a reminder to me that indigenous. People have, always used these technologies, to strengthen. The communities and to. And. Then tea pot was always a reminder to like, despite. All this technology and sometimes, it gets isolated it can be sort of distracting, and it, can feel isolating. But there's, always these. Human. Connections that these, digital technologies as, an artist and as a individual. Within a community. Have. In, like some, of the some of that human humanities, always sort of found within the. Within. The within the, code and. In, sort of struggling. With how, to like phrase. What. It saw that intangible. Thing, that I was talking about and what it what appeals to me about using these digital technologies. I was looking, at Laurence. Paul's work and an essay written by Jackson, two bears and, he had this beautiful quote. That, I just wanted to just present to you guys that. Sort of summarizes something, resonates. With me so. It's. It goes here, the story is not written on the land but instead in ones and zeros in, the liquid architecture, of a computer-generated, environment, a, sacred, space populated. By spirit, simulations, that inhabit. The digital code and. That was from conversations. With spirits. Inside. The inside. The simulation of a cozy little house and that book is from code drift. And. That really kind of resonated in me and there's a lot of great thinkers that are doing, work around, the. Interaction of indigenous, people indigenous contemporary. Art with, new, contemporary. Digital. Technologies, and he. Is one of those sort of. Writers. That are doing these works. So I guess I'll talk about this one too so. After after blueberry pie was. Done I got invited by Trinity, square video to. Do a an. Off-site. VR. Piece and, so, it's. An era it's a great thing about these digital technologies that, you don't have to be in the same city to work with tech teams and, production. Companies to make these artworks you know you can do these on Skype you can do these on sharing. Technologies, like Trello or. Slack. Or whatever those technologies. Are and it's like a very empowering you don't need to spend. Tons of time away from home to make these to, these works and, so this. This piece was a. Piece. That I've made. Up. In in our territory. Of, Luxor, and. So it was just a consideration of of, the monument when, you go home and so it wasn't. Sort. Of a counter to the work that I've been doing around sort of colonial monuments, and again. It was more. About accessibility. Of, the technology, and. How. That technology. Can be shared with the communities. So. I got a couple minutes left here the, last thing I actually wanted to do so this is like I was in contact festivals here in Toronto. This, last step because it could be said about the work that was created there. But down. To the last couple minutes but. I really wanted to share, this one because this is the most recent one I think I submitted it to them two weeks ago and so, decoy, mag is a, magazine out of Vancouver and they, have this amazing and. They invited me to do this sort of if you have this subsection. Of the magazine called BCC, and, it's of. Subscription-based. Digital. Art. Form. And. The. Purpose. Of it is is that they. Said they invite, one artist every month to, do a unique, and exclusive artwork, for, them and for, their subscriber. Base and so. And and then the artist gets a certain percentage of that and they, everyone, sort of wins in this situation, and the the, art consumer, gets, exclusive. Access to these digital. Works and so. There's. 12 new works every year every. Month is a new one so I think it costs like 30 bucks a month or for a whole year and you get access to these exclusive, artworks. Digital artworks so, I think as. A. Model, of sort of dissemination, and sort of how, that sort of how. Organizations, and, magazines, and sort of the. Reciprocity between the arts and sort, of the public and the institution. I think this is a really interesting model and I think that something. Worthwhile to look into if you're interested in sort, of this model of sort of dissemination, so I just. Want to bring that up because I think it's I'm really impressed with what they're doing so. I. Think. We're pretty much at. The time limiter so if, there's any questions sorry I was gonna actually say, -.
I Told I, told, you that I was gonna like take, questions but if they, don't have any questions about things, I, can. Ask, you those questions. The. Last, work you're showing is it just a flat image or. Or. The, last one that the submission for the magazine for the decoy magazine Oh so this this one is a it's. It is a it's an online strictly. Online it's a processing sketch. So. It's. A it's a no, no it's it's, just like a it's. An ongoing generative. Sketch yes. But it's on so it moves on its own it moves on its own its generated, and it sort of constantly. Renews. Itself yeah, so. Though, so the work state works, there host has this type of nature which, is not just like a flat digital image it's something, else beside. Pixels. Happening in it, well. Some of the works so every. Month is a different one so it's, different when some of them are using gifts, some, of them are using just. Straight, images that are created digitally but yeah it's, up to the artists I think because, we. Know that is undoubtable. So so a user can download it and then to others and share it for free but, with someone some of the stuff they they, put on probably you can well. They have a policy of because, they want to honor the the subscription, to subscribers, they keep. The exclusivity, for a year so I couldn't share. The link or, another. Honor system I promise not to share the link but after that like. Almost all process of processing sketches there's like this Honor thing that you share, you can release it to the world and people will scavenge. Your code and see what you're doing you know so I think that's that open democratic, way of. Open. Processing, is you know so I think it's it interesting. That's. It. Wonderful. Thank. You.