In production

Lineage Machine

Lineage Machine

A machine for the haptic replay of a drawing

Project Leaders:

Klaus Engel – machine designer
Isabella Stefanescu – visual artist

Research and development of a Lineage Machine prototype.

The cultural antecedents of the Lineage Machine are the methods used for teaching calligraphy in China and Japan. The teacher takes hold of the student's hand and traces a set pattern. The student will sense the order of the strokes, as well as the changes in pressure and speed and the pauses and hesitations involved in creating a piece. The teacher has been taught by the hand of her teacher, and he - by the hand of his teacher. This direct kinetic transmission of knowledge goes back several hundred years—each calligraphic pattern can be traced through its lineage.

The Lineage Machine is composed of two parts: a device for “recording” or digitizing the movement of the drawing performer; and a haptic device for “playing back” or reproducing the drawing performance, that gently, but firmly, guides the arm and hand of the student/user/viewer through the movements used in the creation of a particular drawing.

Recent Projects

Lord Sword

Lord Sword

An Epic for Two Actors
In the era of post-truth politics, live theatre shines a light on our willing suspension of disbelief.

A grieving storyteller takes on a young apprentice, and together they are drawn into telling an epic beyond their power to control. Two actors play a total of eleven roles in what turns out to be an ode to the art of acting.

A Sense of Place

A Sense of Place – St. Jacobs Country

Our sense of place in Waterloo Region

St. Jacobs occupies a special place in the identity of our Region, as testified by the highway signs that guide tourist cars and buses into town. St. Jacobs has spilled its cultural influence beyond its borders into the rest of the Region, into “St. Jacobs' Country”, and so it is a good place to start investigating our sense of place in Waterloo Region.

Blue Bird

Blue Bird

A story about coming of age and rites of passage

By Tawiah M'Carthy and Brad Cook

A universal idea told through the bodies of two young men, one from Canada and the other from Ghana. Although both come from very different cultural backgrounds, they share a common past that has shaped their possible futures.

Generation to Generation

Generation to Generation

Inter-Generational Story Creation

Generation to Generation Newcomer Program leads inter-generational family groups in a personal story creation process. Participants in the 2013 pilot and 2014 programs are immigrants and refugees who have come to Canada fleeing hardship. G2G celebrates the rich diversity of wisdom, story and heritage of the region's immigrant and refugee communities.

the record player and other stories from the future

The Record Player and Other Stories from the Future

An opera about the first record ever made and the origin and meaning of the turntable

Time Brady (composer) / John Sobol (librettist)

A historical fantasy from the future about recorded sound and the people who invented it, mastered it, scratched it, stole it, remixed it and were transformed by it over a century and a half, cutting together threads and characters as diverse as the explosion of the island of Krakatau.

Signature

Signature

An interactive performance / environment with live video, electroacoustics, improvisational choir and Euphonopen

Isabella Stefanescu / Klaus Engel / Nick Storring / Christine Duncan / Edward Cho

Nothing catches your attention quite like hearing your own name, whether called by an official, whispered by a friend, mentioned in a broadcast, or overheard in a nearby conversation.

Objects on a Table

Objects on a table

For bass clarinet and Euphonopen

On a table, a dozen ordinary household objects – bowls, bottles, jugs – the kind of things one encounters in a kitchen or a studio. Imagine… The gestures of the drawing performer will transform the memorialized sound of Morandi's way of drawing.

Mirror

Mirror

For soprano and visual artist

A multi-media chamber opera for soprano and visual artist, Mirror is a meditation on the risk each one of us takes when presenting a face to the public. Singer and artist collaborate to present a complex, interwoven conversation about themselves and their art.

Euphonopen

Euphonopen

A digital drawing instrument that generates and/or manipulates sound

The performance of a drawing contains information and expression that a finished drawing does not. The Euphonopen is an instrument that captures the complexity of mark-making movement and translates it into sound. Through the Euphonopen, drawing - as a subset of dance - becomes integrated with music and allows us to see and hear the drawing expressed in time as well as space.

Frankenstein's Ghosts

Frankenstein's Ghosts

monstrous musings, unconscious utterances

Frankenstein's Ghosts is a collective creation-research project to build a hybrid critical discussion and multi-media performance work based on the substantive issues raised in Mary Shelley's seminal novel, Frankenstein.

MyAudia, Return of the Pied People

MyAudia, Return of the Pied People

How the power of sound can save us

The children have returned as the Pied People, trained in the musical magic of the Pied Way. The earth's environmental problems are now catastrophic. The Pied People attempt to conjure up the Pied Piper, now revealed to be a woman known as MyAudia. They must get the townspeople to pay attention to the magical sounds around them, to honour the debt they owe to MyAudia and to the environment.

Schubert Now

Schubert Now

A series of short films / modern musical adaptations of Franz Schubert art-songs

Schubert Now is a series of short films that ask: How can the Romantic poet's heightened sensory experience of nature have relevance today? Donovan's funky musical adaptations of Schubert art-song masterpieces contrast the relationship between our 21st century experience of disconnection from nature and the 19th century Romantic immersion in, continuity with, and inspiration from, nature.

Guerilla Sound Events

Guerilla Sound Events

Are you interested in what you are hearing? "Music is all around us, if only we had ears." - John Cage

Peter Hatch's Guerilla Sound Events (2004) are short, spontaneous performance art pieces intended to draw attention to urban soundscapes through unannounced sonic interventions. While often humorous in nature, they also call for a more active role in shaping our urban soundscapes.

(((cocktail party effect)))

(((cocktail party effect)))

Audible hors d'oeuvres!

Intended for large social functions this project presents entertaining interventions that appear and disappear quickly into the crowd. Inter Arts Matrix has presented (((cocktail party effect))) in many unusual venues, including the National Ballet of Canada Galas (2008-2009) and the Stratford Shakespeare Festival Fundraisers (2008-2009).

Sounding Rituals

Sounding Rituals

A series of gentle disturbances

Sounding Rituals is a series of public interventions that gently disrupt social conventions. With a view to exposing our social borders, these ritualistic acts question unwritten norms and reclaim urban space even as they suggest something other. Spiced with humour, the interventions do not adhere to widely-held standards of artistic excellence and beauty, and can be performed by any group of adventurous lay-citizens.

Reaching for Nothing: Water's Thirst

Reaching for Nothing: Water's Thirst

A four-dimensional audio-visual tapestry that moves beyond what is known into the realm of the imagination in a venue that celebrates expansive thinking.

Reaching for Nothing: Water's Thirst is a 110 minute audio-visual meditation in which the breath of space, light and sound move as currents in a stream, crossing and weaving a four dimensional tapestry in which the audience is immersed.

The Notebook Project

The Notebook Project

"The artist's notebook can be viewed as a tool of creation while it is being used: or as a place, very similar to a studio, for thinking, musing and doodling." - Isabella Stefanescu.

The pages of an artist's notebook are transformed into wall-sized projected images with the viewer controlling the sequence of the content. This collaborative image, sound and interactive project creates a public context for the private mark-making and notations of an artist and provides a window into the artistic process.