As part of Digifest 2011 we have commissioned a handful of new media artists who are pushing the boundaries of their artistic realms to create custom installations for the Ziris™ Wall at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto. These are the cream of the crop, putting Ontario’s digital artists on the global map!

Our Featured Artists’ works were on display throughout Digifest at the Sony Centre, along with work by local up and coming Featured Student Artists. All works publicly premiered at the Ziris™ Digifest Closing Gala on Sunday, October 30 2011.

To see the works that were created, check out our Ziris Video Gallery.

Featured Artists include:

Sony Ziris™ Featured Artists

Eric Chan
Hybrid artist-programmer (Ottawa, Toronto, New York, Tokyo)

Eric Chan (a.k.a. eepmon) works at the intersection of art, design and technology.

He is exploring the creative potential of a free and open Internet by combining art with open data to create spontaneous and unexpected paintings. Eric has consulted and executed visual integrated campaigns/projects for Dentsu, Microsoft Xbox 360 Europe, MINI Cooper Canada, Yahoo! Singapore, Tiger Beer to designing cover albums for independent artists such as experimental electronic composer Susumu Yokota. Eric currently lives in New York.

“Transient” – Eric Chan

Artist’s statement:
“The March 11th Earthquake/Tsunami/Nuclear disaster marked a pivotal moment in Japan. Six months later, the crisis continues to affect millions and it is anticipated that the clean-up effort will take decades.
I am amazed and inspired by the resilience and strong will the Japanese people have shown.
Having travelled and having many friends from Japan, the crisis has been on my mind. When I was asked to work on a video piece for the Sony (a Japanese company) Ziris Wall at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, it was no question that my work “TRANSIENT” should pay tribute to the traditional/modern culture that I truly respect.”

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Alexi Parizeau
Digital Video Artist (Toronto)

Alexi has over 12 years of experience creating new video experiences, combining film and digital content to create innovative applications and designs.

His interactive work has won the Gold PROMO Award for Best Use of Interactive Media, and his interactive digital experiences have been featured at the Canadian Pavilion in the World Expo 2005, TEDCity, IdeaCity, DigiFest, the Interior Design Show, and the 2000 Olympics.

His motion graphics and broadcast work has appeared in ads and digital spots for Scotiabank, Cineplex, Toshiba, SCENE, Nissan, Unilever, PepsiCo, Sun Life Financial, Chevrolet, along with many others.

“Magnoliophyta” – Alexi Parizeau

Artist’s statement:
“This video was inspired by a quote from renowned American physicist Richard Feynman on the age-old debate between art vs. science, aesthetic vs. intellect. I tried to capture flowers, which are known for their natural beauty, and attempted to tell the story from a different perspective by dissecting them viscerally. The blooms are folded into higher dimensions, in a way that the audience is not normally used to seeing, so that the focus is on the complicated actions inside the cells, patterns, structures. The song is a remix of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata by digital musician Sterling Barnes.”

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Patricio Davila
Designer, Artist, Educator (Toronto)

Patricio Davila is currently an Assistant Professor at OCAD University (Faculty of Design) and member of the OCADU Mobile Media Lab.

He is also completing a doctoral degree in the Communication and Culture at York and Ryerson Universities with a focus on Critical Approaches to Design and Data Visualization.

As an artist he has exhibited nationally and internationally and has been awarded Toronto and Ontario Arts Council grants.

He has also created mobile, locative and new media installations including: E Tower; System for Forgetting and Remembering.
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Justin Stephenson
Moving Image Designer, Director (Toronto)

Justin Stephenson is a partner in Trace Pictures Animation as well as maintaining his personal practice, Even Steven Inc. His commercial and film work have received numerous national and international awards.

He is currently completing a masters degree in the Communication and Culture at York and Ryerson Universities focusing on relationships between contemporary poetics and digital image making practices.

Justin’s film, The Complete Works based on the works of bpNichol, is in post production and will be released in summer of 2012.

“every(all at(toge(forever)ther)once)thing” – Patricio Davila + Justin Stephenson

Artists’ statement:
“Flocks of bodies in movement leave their traces in typographic shapes from which emerge a passage from bpNichol’sMartyrology book 5. Moving withintelligence and at times attracted or repelled from their neighbours, these agents flow through a space delimited by each frame of the Ziris display. Each screen is a localsystem of birds, or fish or people and each system forms part of a greater whole.”

bpNichol’s work appears courtesy of the Estate of bpNichol. Copyright © Ellie Nichol.
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Nick Crampton
Multimedia Designer / Developer (Toronto)

Nick studied Interdisciplinary Design Strategy at the Institute without Boundaries and Interactive Multimedia and Design at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, where he investigated inertial sensor networks and their applications in the fields of human-computer interaction and “exer-gaming”.

Nick has a passion for photography, architecture, fashion and the visual arts as well as travel and the outdoors. He is inspired and driven by environments, products and applications that propose simple, thoughtful and beautiful solutions to life’s problems.
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Luigi Ferrara
Director, Centre for Arts and Design – George Brown College (Toronto)

Luigi Ferrara is a Registered Architect with seal, a member of the Ontario Association of Architects and the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada as well as an Honorary Member of the Association of Chartered Industrial Designers. He is also the Director, Centre for Arts and Design at George Brown College.

He has served on the Board of the In-ternational Council of the Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID) and was elected President from 2003–2005. He is currently an ICSID Senator.From 1999 to 2002 Luigi served as President and CEO of DXNet Inc., a network for design and innovation that redefined the practice of design using digital media and advanced computing and telecommunication platforms.

He is a graduate with distinction of the Faculty of Architecture at the University of Toronto.

“WINTER, SPRING” – Luigi Ferrara + Nick Crampton

Artists’ statement:
“Inspired by the natural elements that both surround and permeate our city, this ongoing series of visual poems manipulates and abstracts the four seasons of the year by focusing on a single element of nature within each season. Water for Fall, Air for Winter, Fire for Spring and (the forthcoming) Earth for Summer. In addition to looking at each season through the lens of these natural elements, the seasons are examined through the lens of the life cycle of a narrator. These narrations are excerpts from a four-part poem and serve to catalyze the interactions on screen between sound, image and meaning. This series draws inspiration from diverse sources including the works of of Lawren Harris, Lee Krasner, Georges Seurat, Lionel Lemoine Fitzgerald and Higiro Sugimoto.”

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Annie Tung
Painter, Video Artist, Designer (Toronto)

Annie (Si-Wing) Tung graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Visual Arts) from York University and the Advanced Digital Design Post-Grad program at George Brown College.

Her work has exhibited at various art institutions and film festivals in Toronto including International Art Fair, Nuit Blanche, Electric Shadows Independent Film Festival, and Toronto Youth Shorts Film Festival.

“Cycle” – Annie Tung

Artist’s statement:
” ‘Cycle’ illustrates the 5-step cycle of a computer: reboot, on mode, working on tasks, failure, and self-destruct. Then the cycle repeats. It challenges the idea that computers are perfect and of our inability to control them when they fail. This video is comprised of mash-up motion graphics using 2D images to illustrate each ‘computer cycle’, and mixing of different computer sounds.”

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Nicolas St-Amour
Student, 3D Artist, Videographer (Toronto)

Nicolas St-Amour is a student in the CyberARTS program. He has worked as a freelance 3D artist and videographer. His work has been exhibited at various events, including the Toronto International Student Animation Festival.

“The box of multiculturalism” – Nicolas St-Amour

Artist’s statement:
“This piece was developed in a student design charrette in collaboration with Northview Heights S.S., the School of Design at George Brown College, and the Sony Centre for the performing Arts. The aim was to create a visual poem of Toronto and its multi-faceted culture through the eyes of 44 high school students. This piece is a music box that contains the diverse talent found all around the city, lighting up the city locally and on the international stage.

This piece was a winner at the Toronto International Student Animation Festival.”

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