Posts filed under ‘meetings’

November Dorkbot CBR x 2

This month we are very lucky to have not one, but two special guests on Skype for Dorkbot CBR!

On Tuesday 5th November, media artist Jo Tito will join us to talk about a number of her artistic projects. Jo had a key role at SCANZ2013 as a cultural guide, sharing with the residents her knowledge of culture and of the Taranaki area, her home.

A couple of weeks later, on Tuesday 26 November, we will be joined by Melanie Cheung, another SCANZ2013 participant. Melanie is a neuroscientist committed to exploring Indigenous and Western scientific approaches and will be talking to us about electricity and creativity in the brain.

Jo Tito
When: 6pm, Tuesday 5 November 2013

Where: Canberra Contemporary Art Space, Gorman house, Ainslie Avenue, Ainslie

Melanie Cheung
: 6pm, Tuesday 26 November 2013
Where: Canberra Contemporary Art Space, Gorman house, Ainslie Avenue, Ainslie

Peace Mandala 29th Sept by Jo Tito

Peace Mandala 29th Sept by Jo Tito

Jo Tito

Abstract for talk
Jo’s work utilises a range of media including photography, video and painting to explore her passion for life and love and caring for the earth. At Dorkbot we will talk about some of Jo’s recent works, including her “Rock a day project” and her new mandala series.

Biography: Who Am I?

I am a Māori woman indigenous to Aotearoa NZ who is passionate about life and love and bringing about change in the world. I love to write and paint and take photographs. I love to be outside in nature experiencing the elements; the sun the rain and the stars but I also love to be inside snuggled up in a blanket in front of an open fire watching a good documentary or movie!

I love to help people be their best, to help them find who THEY are and share who they are with the world.

I have experienced many things and traveled to many lands where I have felt the spirit of the people and the land, but here in Aotearoa is where I feel most at home. I am currently living on the East Coast of the North Island although my heart is with my mountains: Tarawera, Matawhaura and Taranaki who move through me and remind me of where I come from and of my ancestors who have gone before me.

But I am also this person; my own person outside of where I come from and where I have been and what I have done in my life, I am this person who is constantly searching for who I am, delving into what it is that my heart desires and trying to understand where I fit into the scheme of things and how I can help in the world.

So here I am, I am here ever experiencing the present moment because in my quest to achieve and be something into the future I have found and learnt that the power is right here in the present moment and so I be here, right here, right now. This is who I am until next time…

Melanie Cheung

Abstract for talk
The brain is a fascinating organ that allows us to make sense of the world. As it turns out the brain uses electrochemical signals to do this. Melanie’s talk will discuss some ideas about electricity and creativity in the brain.

Dr Melanie Cheung (Ngāti Rangitihi, Te Arawa) is committed to exploring both Indigenous and Western scientific paradigms to help Māori and Indigenous people with neurodegenerative diseases. Over the past 5 years Melanie and her research team have worked closely with a large Taranaki Māori family that have Huntington’s disease, a dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disease that affects movement, personality, and higher cognitive functions. Their current research projects together include: (1) Developing a model of mutually beneficial partnership between Māori families and biomedical scientists/clinicians; (2) A Photovoice Research Project highlighting the Taranaki families’ wellbeing practices; (3) Clinical and Translational Huntington’s disease research. Dr Cheung’s other scientific research projects have included: Validating a transgenic songbird model of Huntington’s disease (with Rockefeller University); The isolation and culturing of 19 novel primary human cell culture models of brain disease; Using Indigenous values and practices in scientific practice, with specific focus on developing culturally respectful laboratory practices for working with human tissue. This research has been featured internationally in Science (2007, 318:907) and ABC’s award winning All in the mind radio show (3 May, 2008). Melanie has also worked extensively on culturally-responsive science education for Māori and Pasifika students studying biology. She currently works alongside Professor Linda Tuhiwai Smith as the academic coordinator of MAI ki Waikato, a Māori capability program which facilitates the academic, professional and cultural development of 71 Māori and Indigenous doctoral students at Waikato University.

Melanie has worked throughout USA, Hawaii and Australia. She undertook research as a visiting scholar at both the Nottebohm Laboratory, Rockefeller University in New York and the Indigenous Wellness Research Institute, University of Washington in Seattle. She has also been a visiting lecturer at School of Education, University of Hawai’i in Hilo and School of Indigenous Australian Studies, James Cook University in Cairns, Australia. In 2014 she will undertake a Fulbright Fellowship with Professor Michael Merzenich at the Brain Plasticity Institute in San Francisco.

October 22, 2013 at 11:14 am Leave a comment

Kura Puke and Stuart Foster on Skype Tuesday 17 Sept

Dorkbot CBR is on again!

On 17 Sept, we warmly welcome Wellington based artists Kura Puke and Stuart Foster who will be joining us on Skype to talk about recent projects and ongoing collaboration. Kura and Stuart both participated in the SCANZ2013 residency, creating a number of works, which we look forward to discussing.

Here is a sample of some of their collaborative work

Tipi Nga Rangi by Kura Puke and Stuart Foster

Tipi Nga Rangi by Kura Puke and Stuart Foster. This image of the laser being tested was taken during the SCANZ2013. Photo by Kalya Ward.

They were also recently awarded the Intercreate Media Arts Project 2014.

Kura Puke (whakapapa: Te Ati Awa) has a BFA in Fine Arts where she majored in glass and holds a Masters in Maori Visual Arts. Puke utilises LED (light emitting diodes) and fibreoptic thread to create illuminated works.

The combination of traditional elements and seemingly commercial materials and technologies, bring together new and ancient knowledge transforming urban visua-scapes into vital, responsive and communicative spaces culturally relevant and resonant within Maori and bi-cultural communities.

Puke’s last significant work Muramura developed out of her investigation into how Maori visual culture continues to reflect customary values, to remain relevant and to resonate withing increasingly urban realities. This work comprised of 12 tukutuku panels which featured animated patterning with variable patterns, timing, intensity and colour.

New developments are ongoing including solar power and sensor capabilities.

Stuart Foster is a spatial designer and academic based in Wellington. Stuart lectures in the spatial design programme at the College of Creative Arts, Massey University, specialising in digital interaction, digital fabrication and spatial representation practices. His research focus is on interactive technologies that operate between digital and physical environments. Other research interests include the exploration of new digital fabrication technologies and how they may be exploited within design process. Stuart is also a founding member and creative director of interrupt collective

When: 6pm, Tuesday 17 September 2013
Where: Canberra Contemporary Art Space, Gorman house, Ainslie Avenue, Ainslie

September 6, 2013 at 9:16 am Leave a comment

Ian Clothier and Te Urutahi Waikerepuru – Skype chat – 30 July

This month we are very lucky to have Ian Clothier from Intercreate and Te Urutahi Waikerepuru from Te Matahiapo as our guests for Dorkbot CBR.

Ian and Tee will talk about three projects, one for ISEA Istanbul, which was the first time Te Urutahi and Ian worked closely on a project; “Wai” for ISEA Albuquerque the second project, and then “SCANZ 2013: 3rd nature” which was a partnership between Intercreate and Te Matahiapo.

Detail of “Pou Hihiri” by Te Urutahi Waikerepuru

Detail of “Pou Hihiri” by Te Urutahi Waikerepuru

These were all exhibition projects, and Ian and Tee will show images of the works selected as they talk. Ian was responsible for curating and fundraising and Te Urutahi provided cultural audit, networking and cultural consultancy. There are elements of working across culture, and across disciplines that were explored in the exhibitions, leading to some surprising interconnections.

Ian M Clothier is an electronic artist, a member of the ISEA International Advisory Committee, Senior Academic at Western Institute of Technology at Taranaki (WITT), Executive Director of Intercreate Research Centre ( and founding Director with Trudy Lane and Nina Czegledy of SCANZ (Solar Circuit Aotearoa New Zealand). His projects have been selected five times for International Symposium on Electronic Art exhibitions (2004, 2006, 2009, 2011 and 2012) and he has held twenty international exhibitions. A hybrid Polynesian, thematically his projects involve cultural hybridity and nonlinearity, and more recently this is combined into integrated systems while working with indigenous people. Collaborative projects have involved data sensors and web applications, robotics, socio-political data visualisation, micronation creation, augmented reality, motion sensors, online survey data collection and installation. In recent years he has worked with Te Huirangi Waikerepuru on projects that explore the interface between culture and technology, old wisdom and new knowledge, traditional Maori awareness and science. His written work has been published in Leonardo, Convergence and Digital Creativity and he has given many conference presentations including to Technoetic telos, Media Art Histories and The International Conference on Thinking.

Te Urutahi Waikerepuru is a managing director at Te Matahiapo Indigenous Research Organisation, where she is focussed on developing indigenous, cross-cultural & inter-disciplinary networks to establish respectful relationships that builds rewarding & sustainable community partnerships worldwide & supports the entrepreneurship of tomorrow’s leaders today. Te Matahiapo Indigenous Research organization (, a collective established in 2012, is committed to unlocking the potentiality of customary wisdom and knowledge located within the layers of whanau, hapū, iwi of Aotearoa New Zealand and other diverse indigenous groups and communities around the world.

When: Tuesday 30 July, 6pm 2013
Where: Canberra Contemporary Art Space, Gorman house, Ainslie Avenue, Ainslie

July 23, 2013 at 6:38 am Leave a comment

Sonja Van Kerkoff – Skype Chat – Dorkbot CBR 25 June

Sonja van Kerkhoff has lived in the Netherlands since 1989, but was born in Taranaki in 1960 and raised on a dairy farm under the mountain. For Dorkbot she will discuss the creation and the logistics of the multi-screen project “Kainga a roto” (Home Within) made with her partner Sen McGlinn, which is both a site-specific architectural form as well as video and soundscape that touches on the ‘unwanted land’ of her childhood. The work has two distinctive aspects, one technical and physical, and the other spiritual and psychological. It was first commissioned by the Museum of Sculpture (Museum Beelden aan Zee) in the Hague in 2010. It was re-created in Istanbul for ISEA 2011, and its third reincarnation was for SCANZ 2013 in New Plymouth, Aotearoa / New Zealand. The works can be viewed here:

Kāinga a roto (Home Within) installation detail ISEA Istanbul 2011

Often Sonja’a videos, installations, interactive works, sculpture or drawings relate to a type of telling that plays with meanings or associations in lyrical ways. Viewers often need to take action as part of the experience of the work. In the original version of this installation, viewers could not experience all five videos without moving around in the space. She often collaborates with others and many individuals have contributed to “Kāinga a roto” (Home Within), in particular, Toroa Pohatu and Sen McGlinn.

Kāinga a roto (Home Within) is an art-system, consisting of five distinct videos, with sounds, lights and shadows, and a physical space. This art-system is used to represent the complex system of a particular biography (growing up in Taranaki), using a visual language composed of references to the natural world (water in particular, but also earth, wind and bird life) influenced by Māori cultural values.

Kāinga a roto (Home Within) installation detail ISEA Istanbul 2011

When: Tuesday 25 June, 6pm 2013
Where: Canberra Contemporary Art Space, Gorman house, Ainslie Avenue, Ainslie.

June 18, 2013 at 4:02 am 1 comment

Reminder: Shannon Novak, Wednesday 1 May @ Dorkbot CBR

Next Wednesday evening, come along, bring your iPad, tablets and smart phones and interact with NZ artist Shannon Novak’s latest work “Reorchestrated Space” at CCAS.

Shannon Novak

Shannon Novak

Exhibition description

Installation title: “Reorchestrated Space”

In 1994, artist Jeffrey Shaw exhibited a work titled “The Golden Calf” at Ars Electonica 94 in Austria. The work consisted of a white plinth in the middle of a room with a portable monitor sitting on top that the audience could pick up and view a virtual version of the plinth through with a Golden Calf on top. Similarly, Reorchestrated Space explores the idea of an empty display mechanism that the audience can populate with the artists work using a mobile device.

In biblical terms, the Golden Calf was created to remove the anxiety associated with the absence of Moses when he climbed Mount Sinai. Similarly, Shaw’s Golden Calf may have removed the anxiety associated with the absence of an expected work on the plinth. This is further examined in Novak’s work where the audience can fill an empty frame using augmented reality.

Returning to the biblical reference, people danced around the Golden Calf as an act of worship and this was reflected in Shaw’s work where it appeared the audience danced around the plinth as they moved the portable monitor around. In Novak’s work, the audience may also be seen to dance as they search for the correct position to activate the work.

Unlike Shaw’s work, Novak’s work uses sound. This reflects the main focus of Novak’s practice, which is to explore the idea that “everything is music”. His recent works have considered everyday objects or locations as subjects such as drinking fountains, light switches, or entire buildings. The musicality behind each object or location is revealed through colour and abstract forms as experienced by Novak through synesthesia, and in Reorchestrated Space, the musicality behind an empty frame is uncovered.

Shannon Novak – Biography
Shannon Novak is an artist based in Auckland, New Zealand. He works in painting, sculpture, and installation, with a focus on using geometric forms to explore his deep and abiding interest in the interrelationships between sound, colour, form, time, space, and social context. He completed a residency at CentralTrak, The University of Texas at Dallas Artists Residency in 2011, has been engaged in public commissions in Auckland, New Plymouth, and Denver, and co-founded West gallery at The University of Auckland in 2012.

Come along and meet Shannon on Skype and see what interesting things he have been doing.

When: 6pm, Wednesday 1 May, 2013
Where: Canberra Contemporary Art Space, Gorman house, Ainslie Avenue, Ainslie.

April 25, 2013 at 10:37 pm 1 comment

Dorkbot CBR 2013 program – Taranaki Tales

Shannon Novak

Shannon Novak

Dorkbot CBR is very happy to announce the program for 2013 – Taranaki Tales.

This year will focus on a series of Skype conversations with artists who participated in the SCANZ2013 3rd Nature residency, symposium and exhibition, which was located at New Plymouth, in the Taranaki region of New Zealand.

The overarching theme of SCANZ2013 3rd Nature was ‘integrated systems’ and focused on three key intersecting topics:

1. Acknowledging the environmental crisis

2. Engaging with Maori and indigenous peoples

3. Engaging with Sciences and the Hybrid Arts

The Intercreate website states that:

Integrating indigenous perspectives with creative, environmental, scientific and academic views on reality is essential to a sustainable future. At the same time, computing and digital media are changing our relationship to culture and the environment.

On the one hand digital technology allows us to analyse and display data in new ways, as when anthropologists use language databases to shed light on the movement of culture.

On the other hand digital technology adds to our senses, and extends them beyond the body to the forests and the land. Scientists, artists and others are transforming the environment into an organism, as Maori and indigenous peoples have always known it to be.

Dorkbot CBR co-overlord, Tracey Benson, participated in the SCANZ2013 residency and 3rd Nature exhibition. Upon returning to Australia, Tracey was keen to continue the conversations started in Taranaki with a mind to expand the conversations to a wider audience.

The artists giving presentations are either based in the Taranaki region, originate from there or have created works in the New Plymouth/Taranaki region that respond to the location.The first speaker, artist Shannon Novak was brought up in the Taranaki region. It is worth mentioning the interesting connection Shannon has to the title of the talks – “Taranaki Tales”, which was completely incidental. “Taranaki Tales” is also the title of a book that was written and illustrated by Shannon’s mother Paula Novak some years ago.

Shannon Novak

Shannon Novak

Shannon Novak – Biography
Shannon Novak is an artist based in Auckland, New Zealand. He works in painting, sculpture, and installation, with a focus on using geometric forms to explore his deep and abiding interest in the interrelationships between sound, colour, form, time, space, and social context. He completed a residency at CentralTrak, The University of Texas at Dallas Artists Residency in 2011, has been engaged in public commissions in Auckland, New Plymouth, and Denver, and co-founded West gallery at The University of Auckland in 2012.

Come along and meet Shannon on Skype and see what interesting things he have been doing.
When: Wednesday 1 May 6pm 2013
Where: Canberra Contemporary Art Space, Gorman house, Ainslie Avenue, Ainslie.

April 10, 2013 at 2:27 am 3 comments

Dorkbot 30 October Julianne Pierce Love Online

Please join us next Tuesday evening for Julianne Pierce’s Love Online Talk.

Julianne is the Executive Director of  Australian Dance Theatre and ISEA Chair, former Executive Producer for Blast Theory and former Director of ANAT.

55 Ainslie Avenue Braddon Tuesday 30 October  6pm

Latest statistics reveal that Australians are a nation of Internet daters. With 52% of women and 45% of men trawling the Internet to find their perfect match.

The holy grail of dating sites RSVP, claims that 48% of single adults have tried it and more than two thirds of adults in NSW know someone who has met their current partner through online dating.

So why are we turning to the Internet to find a mate? What has happened to the old finished methods of flirting and fumbling after a night out at a bar? Why are our beer goggles so firmly focused on our iPhones and iPads and not staring blearily at a potential squeeze across a crowded dance floor?

In this thought provoking session, aficionado of Internet dating Julianne Pierce will reveal some of the facts and fictions of Internet dating. Can a computer programme really help us to find true love? Should you lie about your age online and use a profile photograph that is 10 years old? When should you go on your first date and how do you make a hasty exit if Mr or Ms right turns out to be Mr or Ms wrong?

Whether you are happily married, just divorced or a confirmed bachelor or bachelorette, you will be fascinated by this foray into love and where to find it in the 21st Century.

Julianne Pierce is a producer, writer and performer. Her alter ego Madame Ivana is a well-known matchmaker and fortune-teller who travels the world in pursuit of romance, excitement and the perfect oyster.

October 22, 2012 at 11:19 pm Leave a comment

July 31 Dorkbot CBR: Ross Gibson and Kate Richards discuss their work Spirit Patrol

In collaboration with David Broker at CCAS we have put together a short series of talks for this year  beginning with Ross Gibson and Kate Richards discussing their work Spirit Patrol in person at the CMAG theatre. We hope you can make it along!

From Spirit Patrol Kate Richard and Ross Gibson 2012 video still

Cnr. London Circuit and Civic Square, 
Canberra City

Media artists Ross Gibson and Kate Richards have been collaborating for over a decade on a significant body of electronic artwork called “Life After Wartime” based on thousands of original scene-of-crime images dating from 1945-1960 and Gibson’s original texts. Gibson and Richards will talk about “Life After Wartime” with particular focus on the newest project – a video titled “Spirit Patrol”. “Spirit Patrol” weaves an evocative tale of intrigue, betrayal and darkness set in Sydney in a period of intense cultural change and personal disruption. It is a narrative that unfolds across the city – from busy Broadway and the port, to drab suburban yards, from the seaside and the badlands of the urban fringe, into nocturnal back-rooms. The resolute, detailed images and deep blacks, rythmic visual composition, and haunting cinematic sound design touch on the austerity and uncertainty of current times. Bringing the images back to light, the artists ask: What if you dreamed these pictures? Are they moments frozen in time? Or scorched insights returning from another era? Night sweats of the soul revisiting now from some unquiet surge of the past?

Kate Richards is a Sydney-based electronic media artist. Recently she has shown at DreamWorlds Beijing, The Hordern Pavilion Sydney, Wollongong Regional Gallery, Plimsoll Gallery Hobart, The Victoria Centre for the Arts. Kate also works as a multimedia designer/producer for cultural sector clients including Stalker Theatre Company, Urban Theatre Projects, Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority and artists Barbara Campbell and Brad Miller. Kate co-ordinates the Masters of Convergent Media at the University of Western Sydney.

Ross Gibson is an award winning writer and media artist whose installations, films and books have been distributed world wide. He is currently Professor of Contemporary Arts at Sydney College of the Arts. As a curator Ross has worked at the MCA, Museum of Sydney, the Drill Hall, the Department of Foreign Affairs, Object Gallery, the Pacific wave Festival, and he was the inaugural commissioning curator at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne. Ten of Ross’ books have been published, and over 30 book chapters, as well as dozens of journal articles – making him one of Australia’s most well respected authors and editors on cultural and historical themes.


June 18, 2012 at 4:14 pm Leave a comment

Dorkbot CBR November 9 ISEA odyssey

Tracey and Dave’s ISEA Odyssey
Wednesday November 9 at 6pm
CCAS Gallery Gorman House Art Centre

dorkbot cbr has been on study leave but worry not, in November its back – with back to back sessions. Both Tracey Meziane Benson and David Broker have been in Istanbul for the Istanbul Biennale and the 2011 ISEA, International Symposium on Electronic Art. First up, they will take you on a virtual tour of Uncontainable, the exhibition of the ISEA exhibition. Uncontainable was an impressive and comprehensive show in many venues across the city that included lots of Australian content. There were squillions of clever ideas and interesting uses of all sorts of technologies – old and new. Tracey, who gave a paper at the conference, will also talk about some of the bigger issues that are current in the zone of emergent media and her residency in Turkey. This is a great opportunity to catch up on the happenin’ things in the world of electronic art and too see what people doing strange things with electricity are actually doing.

Forget The Big Bang and come to dorkbot cbr, it’s the real thing !

October 26, 2011 at 3:23 am Leave a comment

Warren Armstrong Augmented Reality Dorkbot CBR 26 July 2011

Warren Armstrong is a new media artist whose web-based art, sonification and augmented reality works have been exhibited around Australia and New York. His most recent works include the Information Virus (2010), a 3D augmented reality work; and the Twitterphonicon/Twitter Hymn Book (2010) with composer Amanda Cole, an installation that converts Twitter updates into music.

He is also the curator of (Un)seen Sculptures, an exhibition of international 3D augmented reality art that is being staged in Sydney, Canberra & Melbourne throughout 2011.

Image: Warren Armstrong The Information Virus (Notitiaviridae internets) 2010

6-8 PM

September 14, 2011 at 12:36 am Leave a comment

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