Author: Erin Gee

Laughing Web Dot Space at Yards Gallery, Chicago. Photo: Micki Harris

Scapi Magazine Chicago

My interactive sound art website Laughing Web Dot Space was featured in a very thoughtful review of the Entanglements exhibition curated by Chelsea Welch and Iryne Roh of Her Environment, and on exhibit at the Yards Gallery in Chicago in January-February 2019.

“Now that we’re all agreed that harassment is no laughing matter, let’s stop by Erin Gee’s #metoo resonant Laughing Web Dot Spacea virtual “laugh-in” featuring survivors of sexual violence. Attendees were invited to don headphones and listen to an overlapping chorus of victims laughing and/or contribute (anonymously) their own laughter. The maxim “Question your laughter”  came to mind, as I thought of both the violent and cathartic valences of joining in laughter. My favorite element of this installation was the way it built in consent, in the form of a STOP button. “

-NOA/H FIELDS

 

For the full review of the show, click here

Locus Sonus Residency France

I will be developing a new work for VR in the context of a residency at Locus Sonus in Aix-en-Provence starting February 2018 until May 2018.  During these three months I will push the potential of sonified biodata into increasingly posthumanist/non-anthropomorphic territories using virtual architectures as sensorial training ground, as inspired by materialist philosophers such as Jane Bennett and post-humanist Rosi Braidotti.

I thank the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec for its financial support of this project.

About Locus Sonus

Locus Sonus is a research group attached to ESAAix (École supérieure d’art d’Aix-en-Provence) and the French Ministry for Culture, integrated with PRISM (Perception, Representations, Image, Sound, Music) an interdisciplinary research unit that groups researchers from AMU (Aix Marseille University), CNRS (National Center for Scientific Research) as well as ESAAix.

Locus Sonus’ main aim is to explore the continuously evolving relationship between sound, place and usage in an Art/Science tradition. The research methodology includes experimentation with emerging audio technologies particularly those relating to sound transmission, mobilization or spatialisation as well as historical contextualisation of such practices. Locus Sonus accommodates practice-based PhD students enrolled at Aix-Marseille University (« Pratiques et théorie de la création artistique et littéraire » E.D 354).

Locus Sonus’ main field of investigation is entitled New Auditoriums, to be understood here as the different ways in which audiences collectively share a listening experience. Beyond physical spaces such as concert halls or open-air stages, we attribute this description to all systems that enable a shared audio experience. Examples include radio, audio streaming or virtual worlds. We consider that each system has particular (audio and social) qualities that call for artistic enquiry and experimentation, these may in turn lead to different types of artistic practice.

Locus Sonus’ current research focuses on audio in virtual environments (for example New Atlantis) and the transmission and perception of remote soundscapes (for example : Locustream).

About the project

In this project I propose virtual space and spoken word as a means of creating a “speculative” materialism that promotes empathy to (virtual) objects by allowing the viewer to objectify and analyze their own (biodata), making material of the human body itself. I’m interested in exploring the limits of virtual physicality and phenomenological experience through imaginative sonic narrative as well as virtual space, making use of simple 3D objects and architectures dramatically lit, referenced imaginatively through the five senses by the unseen narrative voice in order to maintain the focus on sound: the disconnect between virtual material and sonic suggestion forms a useful perceptual noise (for example, the voice writes on a notepad that is never seen, the sounds of a lab or examination room can fade in and out, lab is never seen). During this residency I would record the spoken word sections inspired by roleplay, personal attention and spoken narrative vocalizations typical to the genre of Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR), a style of sound composition developed largely on the internet that focuses on high frequency noises to create intense feelings of relaxation accompanied by “tingles” felt on the skin. ASMR enthusiasts focus intensely on the physiological reaction of the listener to sound, and so I want to use this voice as a means of loosely describing material agencies of virtual objects as imperative to the expansion of human sensorium. The link between physiological and phenomenological experience and confirmed biofeedback pushes the physical potential of VR into new sonic territories that focus on embodied experience through perceptions of external as well as internal spaces.

Other Residents

I am excited to be working alongside the other residents at Locus Sonus, and learning more about their projects and practices.

raadio caargo (Christophe Aslanian et Aurélia Nardini)

Mitchell Herrmann

Cluster Festival Winnipeg Canada

Cluster Festival: Winnipeg’s most dynamic take on contemporary art and sound.

Cluster X : Feb. 28 – Mar. 3, 2019

Great news: I’m going to Winnipeg for the first time!  As a proud Canadian hailing from the prairie provinces, I have always wanted to get to know the experimental art and music scene there. In March I’m going to be at the 10th edition of Cluster Festival, I’ll be featured almost every day all weekend! Whether it is a talk on my practice, a public discussion about diversity in music with an amazing bunch of musicians and composers, the Canadian debut of my newest biohardwares installation pinch and soothe, and a new version of Machine Unlearning (2019) where I will sweetly whisper an unraveling version of Wuthering Heighs into your wireless headphone-d ears as a means of giving you neural stimulation and language de processing treatment. It’s all about sound and body-hacking and the festival looks amazing. See you there! For more information  www.clusterfestival.com

Cluster Festival X 2019 Promo from Cluster Festival on Vimeo.

CLUSTER 2019 ARTISTS

Andrea Robers • Beast Nest • Davis Plett • Erin Gee • Eliot Britton • Luke Nickel • Grace Hrabi • Hong Kong Exile • Kristen Wachniak • Maksym Chupov-Ryabtsev • Matt Poon • Mirror Frame • Natalie Tin Yin Gan • Remy Siu • Sharmi Basu • Susan Britton •TAK • Vicky Chow • William Kuo • XIE

TFAP@CAA Conference NYC

Rape, Representation, and Radicality |TFAP@CAA: The Feminist Art Project Day of Panels at the Annual College Art Association Conference 2019

Feb 16, 2019 – Feb 16, 2019

New York Hilton Midtown

1335 6th Avenue
Trianon Ballroom
New York, NY 10019

Time: 8:30am – 5:30pm | This event is free and open to the public.

My interactive website Laughing Web Dot Space will be featured as part of the conversations at the Feminist Art Project Day of Panels at CAA 2019.

Digital exhibition on Instagram @rapeandrepresentation

Click here to access the symposium website for schedule and more information on presenters.

Intersectional feminist art has long dealt with the oppressions and violations stemming from colonialism, slavery, and couverture. Rape, Representation, and Radicality is a full-day symposium that will explore sex, power, and justice through intersectional art and activism, academics, and healing. The forum brings academic study, intellectual discourse, and visceral candor together to create a shared space and to demand bodily autonomy.

Rape, Representation, and Radicality will address how sexual assault has affected feminist art practices, and who has power and why. What institutional changes are needed to work towards sexual justice, and how do race and gender impact the experiences and responses within the context of contemporary feminist discourse? The hidden legacy of Women of Color, within the conversation about sexual violence, sexual empowerment, artistic praxis, and art history, must be re-contextualized and revised to be included accurately. The current cultural narrative around sexual violence necessitates re-orientation to include those who are left out of the conversation. This forum will present strategies to understand, rectify, reclaim and move forward towards healing.

Symposium Chairs: 
Christen Clifford (Independent Artist; The New School) and Jasmine Wahi (School of Visual Arts; Project for Empty Space)

Entanglements Exhibition Chicago

Laughing Web Dot Space is featured in Entanglements Exhibition curated by Her Environment

Saturday – 1/26 through Friday 2/15

Yards Gallery, 2028 S Canalport Ave
Chicago, IL 60616
www.theyardsgallery.com @theyardsgallery

Click here for Facebook Event Page for the Opening

Entanglements challenges both the logical and emotional connections between us and our technology. The tensions that surface from these dynamics are often all encompassing; they seep deeply into every aspect of the human condition. Through accepting that technology is an integral part of our lives, we explore what it means to have a relationship with it.

This show is a collaboration between the curators and the artists in which we create a space where electronics, wires, and artworks are deliberately installed to visualize the complexities and closeness of the human/technology relationship. We are reminded of the global connection that technology can bring with works such as Erin Gee’s “Laughing Web Dot Space” website where visitors are invited to record their laughter and join in with a chorus of other laughs belonging to other survivors of sexual violence. Jen Kutler also uses the power of human connection as her piece “The Other” is a polyphonic textural synthesizer driven by skin contact between two people. The system is able to recognize very subtle changes in pressure and movement, so when two people touch fingertips what comes out of the speaker is a synthesis of physical connection.

The show also explores the very complicated ways in which there is a mutual balance of power and reveals the ways in which the power of destruction can hide beneath the surface of the interface. With works such as Snow Xu’s “Perfecthuman Harasser,” a machine that catcalls human passersby, we see that because we humans are the creators of the machines, our biases show up in the development of technology and can cause more harm on groups that already experience social disadvantages.

Through the dynamic conversations of all of the pieces we invite the visitors to take an experiential walk through our take of contemporary relationships with technology.

Please join Her Environment at Yards for the opening reception of Entanglements on Saturday, Jan. 26 at 7pm-11pm.

Artists:
Anxious to Make (SF and LA)
Erin Gee (Montreal)
Hannah Newman (Portland)
Snow Xu (Chicago)
Madeeha Lamoreaux (Chicago)
Sara Goodman and Sasha Tycko (Chicago)
Jen Kutler (New York)

New World Notes Top 12 of 2018

Wagner James Au, official blogger for Second Life, included my biosignal-controlled VR work Project H.E.A.R.T. in his New World Notes 2018 roundup of most exciting innovations in AR, VR and AI! Project H.E.A.R.T.’s innovate incorporation of emotion into gameplay was included among such exciting innovations such as MICA, Magic Leap’s Eerily Human AI Avatar Who Looks You In The Eye, an AI basketball player that “learns” how to dribble a ball, and IOS ARKit technology that allows for shadows and reflections of real objects to appear in AR spaces.

 

Click here to read what else made top 12 at New World Notes

New Studio Space

I am proud to say that I have finally begun fulfilling a major life dream of mine and put together my first real physical studio in a little forest somewhere in Maine, USA.  For years I have been making ambitious projects by renting desk space at Eastern Bloc Lab in Montreal, keeping production mostly virtual/small scale, or participating in residencies at various institutions. I’m thrilled to announce that I’m finally investing in tools and space for making, it’s my major announcement for the moment.  So what does one do when they have just finished assembling a fresh minted studio space?  Run away to France to start a new VR project of course!  (haha)  Locus Sonus residency, here I come!  Little studio in the woods, I’ll be back in May!

Review: Canadian Art

Amber Berson wrote a thoughtful review on the occasion of Eastern Bloc’s 10th anniversary exhibition Amplification that features discussion and images of my first internet-artwork https://laughingweb.space

This exhibition meant a lot to me as an artist that has been supported by Eastern Bloc over the years not only by the fact that they have exhibited me and involved me in many projects…but also I have been enriched an supported by their fantastic programming.  I salute Eastern Bloc and wish them all the best in their next 10 years!

To read the article, click here.

LAUGHING WEB DOT SPACE

An interactive website and virtual laugh-in for survivors of sexual violence.

The URL: https://laughingweb.space

This website enables survivors to record and listen to the sounds of their laughter, and through the magic of the internet, laugh together. Visitors of any gender that self-identify as survivors are invited to use the website’s interface to record their laughter and join in: no questions asked. Visitors can also listen to previously recorded laughter on loop.

Why laughter? Laughter is infectious, and borne of the air we still breathe. We laugh in joy. We laugh in bitterness. We laugh awkwardly. We laugh in relief. We laugh in anxiety. We laugh because it is helpful for laugh. We laugh because it might help someone else. Laughing is good for our health: soothing stress, strengthening the immune system, and easing pain. Through laughter, we proclaim ourselves as more complex than the traumatic memories that we live with. Our voices echo, and will reverberate in the homes, public places, and headphones of whoever visits.

The site is officially launched on October 3rd, 2018!

Dedicated to Cheryl L’hirondelle

This project was commissioned by Eastern Bloc (Montreal) on the occasion of their 10th anniversary exhibition. For this exhibition, Eastern Bloc invited the exhibiting media artists to present work while thinking of linkages to Canadian media artists that inspired them when they were young. I’m extremely honored and grateful for the conversations that Cheryl L’hirondelle shared with me while I was developing this project.

When I was just beginning to dabble in media art in art school, the net-based artworks of Cheryl L’hirondelle demonstrated to me the power of combining art with sound and songwriting, community building, and other gestures of solidarity, on the internet. Exposure to her work was meaningful to me – I was looking for examples of other women using their voices with technology. Skawennati is another great artist that was creating participative web works in the late 90s and early 2000s – you can check out her cyberpowwow here.

Special thank you to Kai-Cheng Thom, who with wisdom, grace, and passion guided me through many stages of this work’s development.

Click here to visit Laughing Web Dot Space

Credits

Graphic Design – Laura Lalonde
Backend Programming – Sofian Audry, Conan Lai, Ismail Negm
Frontend Programming- Koumbit

Exhibition History/Upcoming

October 3 -23, 2018 – Eastern Bloc, Montreal. Curated by Eliane Ellbogen

February 16, 2019 –The Feminist Art Project @ CAA Conference – Trianon Ballroom, Hilton NYC.

February 2019 – Yards Gallery, Chicago. Curated by Chelsea Welch and Iryne Roh.

Reviews/Interviews

(2019) https://chiartshub.com/2019/01/27/review-entanglements-forces-us-to-consider-our-relationship-to-technology/

Fields, Noa/h. (2019). “Dangling Wires: Artists Examine Relationship with Technology in Entanglements.” Scapi Magazine (Chicago). https://scapimag.com/2019/02/05/dangling-wires-artists-examine-relationship-with-technology-in-entanglements/

Fournier, Lauren (2018). “Our Collective Nervous System.” Canadian Art. https://canadianart.ca/interviews/our-collective-nervous-system/

Berson, Amber (2018). “Amplification” Canadian Art. REVIEWS / OCTOBER 23, 2018. https://canadianart.ca/reviews/amplification/