Canada Tag

NOT POMPIDOU – Paris, FR

As part of the 2020 exhibition NEURONS: Simulated Intelligence at Centre Pompidou, Paris, my work as a media artist in AI, affective computing, and interactive sound website was misattributed to American composer and professor at Brandeis University Erin Gee (who shares my name).

While the two Erin Gees have been aware of one another’s practices for several years, (we share many peers who have teased us about our namesakes, and we were even programmed in the same music festival in 2019), to our knowledge our works have never been mixed up or misattributed in a professional capacity.

A public statement was made by the publishers of the catalogue (HYX editions) on their website and as a digital addendum/downloadable pdf, available here.

This post is intended to clarify the following points:

  1. The work that was presented at Centre Pompidou, Shillim: Mouthpiece 34 (2019), is not my work. Mouthpieces is the name of a body of work by homonymous American composer Erin Gee. She is best known for her work in non-semantic vocal music that typically consists of vocal and instrumental compositions, named Mouthpieces with a numerator afterwards. She has been contributing compositions to the Mouthpieces series for over twenty years.
  2. The artworks Machine Unlearning (2020) and Laughing Web Dot Space (2018) referenced in the wall text of the exhibition (see below) and attributed to the American composer are my works. These are new media artworks, incorporating technologies such as neural networks and interactive HTML in their creation. In addition, my work of the soone (2017) attributed to the American composer via the catalogue (see below) is another new media artwork of mine that uses machine learning / AI, and is a collaboration with Canadian media artist Sofian Audry, who is not acknowledged in the catalogue.
  3. As part of the events surrounding the exhibition, American composer Erin Gee was also invited to speak on a panel as part of Forum Vertigo: human and artificial perception dealing with generative music and artificial intelligence.  The opinions expressed and works she references in this panel discussion are entirely her own and are unrelated to my practice.

 

Following the discovery of the misattribution of my work at the exhibition opening (thanks to Parisian peers who were on site), I worked with Robin Dupuis (the Director of the organization perte de signal, which represents my work) to communicate the seriousness of this error to the exhibition’s curators Frédéric Migayrou et Camille Lenglois. Unfortunately, the wall text misattributing my work and research in new media art to American composer Erin Gee remained on the wall of the exhibition for weeks before being replaced by a text that was truly dedicated to the research of the American composer.

In response, the curators of Neurones apologized for these misattribution errors. They expressed that they were unable to do anything further to mitigate the issue of the 200-page catalogue, which also attributed other new media artworks of mine to the American composer who shares my name. During this period I had also reached out to the American artist who was also onsite, however for personal reasons she was not available to respond to the situation for several months.

A photo of original wall text from Neurones exhibition at Centre Pompidou combining the works and research of Canadian Artist Erin Gee with American Composer Erin Gee.

I am very grateful for the assistance of Robin Dupuis at Perte de Signal as well as Editions HYX publishers for working together to create a digital addendum that addresses the error published in the catalogue a month after the error was discovered. It was very pleasant to work with the publishers together on this solution. Despite this, a digital addendum has only a limited impact, as the printed copies remain in circulation without any printed addendum (see below).

I have recently been in touch with American composer Erin Gee to share a horrified laugh and work on solutions – we have both agreed to be diligent and aware of potential confusions this situation might create in the future. We collectively state:  Canadian new media artist Erin Gee is a specialist in affective technologies, emergent technologies such as quantum computing and AI, and vocal performance inspired by ASMR. American composer Erin Gee is a professor at Brandeis University and also an expert in non-semantic vocal performance and composition techniques.

This is of course an imperfect and improvisational solution, as I would never want to prevent a peer from exploring new technology, nor is it logical for me to avoid non-semantic vocal content in future works. Rather, this strategy speaks to a disciplinary situatedness that our sensibilities emerge from. If you are a professional artist or curator working in our fields, please share this story in your network as a means of preventing further confusion. As more peers learn of this issue, as well as our two distinct practices and achievements in our respective fields, we hope that this error will not reproduce itself.

Poster for Akousma 2021

Akousma Montreal

I am thrilled to present the world premiere of my ASMRtronica work We as Waves (2020) as part of the 30th anniversary Akousma Festival in Montreal, Canada.  The programming features an exciting collection of composers that I am happy to be presenting my work alongside.

For more information on the full week of programming and/or to purchase tickets for the festival, click here.

Mélanie Frisoli / Frédéric Auger / Roger-Tellier Craig

Hugo Tremblay / Rouzbeh Shadpey / Erin Gee

– 14 octobre 2021 – USINE C // 7pm

ABOUT AKOUSMA –

Composers Jean-François Denis, Gilles Gobeil, and Robert Normandeau founded Akousma in Montréal in 1991 as a concert production company that showcases works by electroacoustic artists and collectives in Montréal. These works are presented via an immersive sound system, and they take several forms: acousmatic (tape music), mixed (tape and instruments), live (live electronics), video music, or music integrated into other art forms such as dance, performance, or installation.

Audio Placebo Plaza: Montreal Edition

Audio Placebo Plaza is a community sound art project conceived by Erin Gee and Julia E Dyck in collaboration with invited artist Vivian Li .

In June 2021 the trio transformed a former perfume shop in the St Hubert Plaza of Montreal into a pop up radio station, sensory room, therapist office, and audio production studio, uniting these spaces through the aesthetics of a sandwich shop or cafe to offer customizable audio placebo “specials” and “combos” to the public.

Founded upon principles of feminism, socialism, and audio production excellence, Audio Placebo Plaza invites everyday people to take appointments with artists to discuss how an audio placebo could help improve their lives. These appointments are entirely focused on the individual and are in themselves part of the process. Common topics of discussion included increasing productivity, self-esteem, self-care, social interactivity, brain hacking, mitigating insomnia, and pain management, but also one’s aural preferences, sensitivities, and curiosities. Intake sessions were conducted in a blended telematic/in-person structure to determine one’s familiarity and comfort levels with a variety of psychosomatic audio techniques including but not limited to soundscapes, binaural beats, simulated social interactions, positive affirmations, drone, participatory vocalization, ASMR, guided meditation and deep listening.

After the consultation is complete, team members met to discuss each participant’s case to fulfill their “prescription,” and also to divide the labor amongst the three creators. The collaborations are non-hierarchical, adaptive, and simultaneous: one might be working on up to four projects at a time, or trade tasks depending on one’s backlog of labor. Labor is divided into recording sounds, conducting intake sessions, writing scripts, performing spoken or sung content, writing music, editing and audio mixing, cleaning and maintaining the shared spares, and communicating with visitors or walk-ins.

Audio Placebo Plaza Radio broadcast was facilitated through a pirate radio transmitter as well as an internet radio station. We broadcast completed placebos, shared technical advice and performance practices during informal critiques, work sessions in progress through the DAW, and sometimes informal chats with visitors. Intake sessions were also broadcasted (with the consent of visitors).

Through Audio Placebo Place, we explore and develop methods for sound and music that propose emotional labor, listening, collaboration and “music as repair” (see Suzanne Cusick, 2008) as key elements that shape the sonic-social encounter between artists and the public.

Can placebos help?
Does sound have the power to process complex emotions?
Can music give you what you need?
Is this even music?

Workshop: ASMR Vocabulary for Composers

Online with Facebook Live
Wednesday, May 26, 2021 at 3 PM EDT
Price: Free
Public Anyone on or off Facebook
Register here: bit.ly/CLC-ASMR
You will receive Zoom login the day of the webinar. Please contact admin@composition.org if you have any issues.
ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) is a term that refers both to an audiovisual genre that has existed since 2009, and an unconscious, sensory reaction of “phantom touch” an individual might feel in response to soft textural sounds greatly amplified. Focusing on the ways that ASMR sounds “hack” into the subconscious of the listener to create emotional reactions, this seminar introduces audio visual vocabularies through “trigger” techniques, making and breaking patterns, and influences from hypnosis and meditation. ASMR is highly mediated through the camera and microphone, so I will also include these considerations. Through analysis of this genre I invite participants to explore techniques together during the webinar with instruments, voices, or everyday objects.
To learn more about the presenter, visit eringee.net.
*Cet événement sera présenté en anglais, mais les questions en français sont acceptées et encouragées !

Decolonizing the Senses, Roundtable: Montreal

Decolonizing the Senses, Roundtable

Organizer: Florencia Marchetti, CISSC, Concordia University, Canada

This roundtable brings together an interdisciplinary team of Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists and scholars who have been exploring ways of decentering Western notions about the body and the senses through an intercultural research-creation lab since 2014. Through talking and making, thinking, reading and researching, team members have shared and learned about each other’s practices, bringing to the table a diverse range of epistemological and ontological doubts and premises. In this roundtable, we will revisit the project’s trajectory, from our early conversations and interferences to the production of three portable sensory environments and the video re-mediations produced to share the works under the new social regulations imposed by pandemic living.

Discussion topics will include:

– Listening Relationalities

– New Media Art and Indigenous Ontologies

– Creative-Knowledge Flow and Protocols (from Place/Land through Non-Human Ontologies into Artworks)

Panelists:

Jennifer Biddle, National Institute for Experimental Art, University of New South Wales, UK,
David Garneau, Visual Arts, University of Regina, Canada

Erin Gee, Music Composition, Universite de Montreal, Canada
David Howes, Centre for Sensory Studies, Concordia University, Canada
Suzanne Kite, Concordia University, Canada,
Chris Salter, Design Art, Concordia University, Canada,
r e a Saunders, Independent artist, Australia

Online Panel: NFTs and Artists

Online discussion hosted by Dunlop Art Gallery, Regina Canada

NFTs and Artists with Erin Gee, Jeremy Bailey, Rah Eleh, and Alex McLeod

7pm CST / 9pm EST

This is going to be a really FUN, critical, and informative discussion on NFTs (Non Fungible Tokens) with Canadian artists Jeremy Bailey, Rah Eleh, and Alex McLeod!

How are digital artists using NFTs now, and what will their use look like in the future of this rapidly changing landscape?

image of MUTEK 2020 Distant Arcades interface

Distant Arcades: MUTEK Montreal

This exhibition premieres my newest project: “To the Farther” (2020) is a song that combines the aesthetics of ASMR with electronic music. This is part of my ongoing project to produce an ASMRtronica album.  My participation in this exhibition as part of the 2020 Amplify D.A.I. cohort – AMPLIFY D.A.I is an initiative of the British Council in partnership with MUTEK Montréal, MUTEK Buenos Aires and Somerset House Studios in the UK. The programme is supported by Canada Council for the Arts and Fundación Williams.

Distant Arcades

Darling Foundry Montreal

Erin Gee and Jen Kutler Presence (2020) with Xuan Ye, What lets lethargy dream produces lethargy’s surplus value (2020)

August 13, 2020 – online performances for Darling Foundry, Montreal 

I have been invited to participate in a project by curator Laurie Cotton-Pigeon called Allegorical Circuits for Human Software, a cyberfeminist exploration of Marshall McLuhan’s writing on technology that includes performances and virtual interventions spanning several months from JUNE 11, 2020 – AUGUST 20, 2020 (5 PM TO 10 PM)

I’m very happy to be sharing the performance evening with Xuan Ye, a great Canadian artist working across code, sound, and performance. The programming also includes:

MÉGANE VOGHELL

AVALON

NADÈGE GREBMEIER FORGET

ANNA EYLER & NICOLAS LAPOINTE                           

XUAN YE

 

ERIN GEE & JEN KUTLER

FABIENNE AUDÉOUD

ILEANA HERNANDEZ

NINA VROEMEN & ERIN HILL

EMMA-KATE GUIMOND

 

Cotton-Pigeon writes of our work:

“The notion of mediated connectivity is also present in the performative work of artists Erin Gee and Jen Kutler. As the two artists live in two different places (Gee is based in Canada and Kutler in the United States), they developed a system of sensorial connection without ever meeting in person, which has allowed them to overcome the constraints associated with geographical distance and concretize the “virtuality” of the Internet. Interested in the unconscious and autonomous nature of bodily sensations and their associated emotions, the artists simulate touch by combining an ASMR relaxation technique with the use of DIY devices (Touch Simulation Units) that work similarly to transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS).”

 

Allegorical Circuits for Human Software has been conceived in dialogue with the collective exhibition FEEDBACK, Marshall McLuhan and the Arts, which will be presented in summer 2021 at Fonderie Darling.

 

 

Web Residency: Saw Video

I have been selected alongside three other residents for Saw Video’s Stay At Home Internet Residency.

I am especially pleased to have the opportunity to collaborate with Jen Kutler on a new work for telematic sound and video during the course of this residency.  We are having an insane amount of fun creating feedback systems for music and biodata that integrate transcutaneous nerve stimulation over web sockets.

Over the course of five weeks (April 29th – May 29th), we will meet via zoom/hangouts to discuss readings, media, and art making. Individual web-based studio visits with national scholars, curators and artists will be had, and we will diffuse the artists’ works on May 28th. Please sign up for our newsletter here, and follow us on social media for more information on artists’ diffusion scheduling!

Erin Gee To the Sooe exhibition image

Review of solo exhibition – Canadian Art

To the Sooe” is my first solo exhibition in a major Canadian institution, curated by Tak Pham at the MacKenzie Art Gallery . I am happy to announce the exhibition was recently reviewed by artist and curator Lauren Fournier and published in Canadian Art. This is my first solo exhibition in a major Canadian institution and I am thrilled by the positive response from critics.  The exhibition closed early due to COVID-19, which is noted elegantly by the reviewer:

“Erin Gee’s “To The Sooe” reflects on the valences of emotional life in a post-internet world, gesturing to the many resonances between humans and machines in a time when the humanity of algorithms, data and screens might seem at odds with the complexities of feeling. Having visited the exhibition just weeks before the gallery’s temporary closure due to COVID-19 physical distancing measures, I am now struck by how prescient the work is in this moment of quarantine and self-isolation, when, for most of us, our primary means of communication, intimacy, and connection with others is through technology.”- Lauren Fournier

Click below to read the full review on Canadian Art.

Erin Gee