Electric Fields and Mini-Maker Faire 2012
October 11-14th, 2012

Sound and Space Symposium

The audible attributes of physical space have always contributed to the fabric of human culture, as demonstrated by prehistoric multimedia cave paintings, classical Greek open-air theaters, Gothic cathedrals, acoustic geography of French villages, modern music reproduction, and virtual spaces in home theaters. Auditory spatial awareness is a prism that reveals a culture's attitudes toward hearing and space. - Barry Blesser and Linda-Ruth Salter

This year during Electric Fields we will bring together a series of presentations and conversations that will explore the complex relationship between sound and space.

Thursday, October 11th
Keynote Address - Barry Blesser
World Premiere performance - Jesse Stewart and company

Friday, October 12th
Pit Lecture and Student Symposium - Carleton University, Azrieli School of Architecture and Ubranism
Pecha Kucha - Sound and the City

Saturday, October 13th
How does space shape sound?
Moderator: Matthew Edwards
Panelists: Barry Blesser, Gordon Monahan and Jesse Stewart

How does culture shape sound?
Moderator: Dipna Horra
Panelists: Brendan Fernandes, David Lieberman and Linda-Ruth Salter

Sunday, October 14th
Can sound be spaceless?
Moderator: Greg J. Smith
Panelists: Geeta Dayal, Darsha Hewitt and Mitch Akiyama

How does sound shape knowledge?
Moderator: Paul Jasen
Panelists: Jennifer Heuson, Donna Legault and John Shiga

Keynote Presentation

Leading off the festival will be Dr. Barry Blesser.

Dr. Barry Blesser is considered one of the grandfathers of the digital audio revolution. He invented and developed the first commercial digital reverberation system, the EMT-250 in 1976, helped start Lexicon in 1971, published the landmark paper, “Digital Processing of Audio Signals” in 1978, co-chaired the 1st International Conference on Digital Audio in 1980, and was an adviser to the US Justice Department on the Watergate Tapes in 1974.

Most recently, MIT Press published his first book with his wife Linda-Ruth Salter: Spaces Speak, Are You Listening? Experiencing Aural Architecture, which has provoked a latent interest in sound and acoustics worldwide. Dr. Blesser is a passionate advocate of the social consequences of corrosive acoustics and will present the foundation of his ideas for the concept of aural architecture.

Student Symposium

Dr. Blesser will join his Spaces Speak co-author Linda-Ruth Salter for a special lunch lecture at the Carleton University, Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism. This lunch time lecture will be a part of the well known Pit Lectures delivered in the much loved Building 22, the heart of the Carleton Architecture program.

Pecha Kucha

EF2012 partners with the idea generator Pecha Kucha for a special night of presentations, from both local and international artists and thinkers, on the theme of “Sound and the City”. The quick format of the presentation gives participants only 20 slides (20 seconds each) to outline their perspective, idea, concept or creative drive.

Discusion Panels

The heart of the conference involves four separate discussions on “Sound and Space” to be led by four artists/researchers and brings together creative thinkers from Montréal, Toronto, New York City, San Francisco, and of course right here in Ottawa. Planned as dynamic free flow conversations, we are excited about what ideas will unfold from these exchanges!


Electric Fields 2011

The idea for our symposium emerged as we worked on the previous Electric Fields. The projects of 2011 focused on the relationship between sound and space, from percussive performance in a public pool to a reconnection of Ottawa's architecture into musical form. This new website highlight the four projects and hope's to create a link between those artistic project and the upcoming discussion on sound and space. Launch the EF2011 web publication.