Bright Futures

Intermedia/Cyberarts Students Offer an Illuminating Experience

  • jordan loeppky-kolesnik, sweaty life

From Manhattan’s crystal snowflake to the kaleidoscopic Polar Spheres outside of Place des Arts, light installations have transformed our day-to-day into living art.

With summer finally around the corner, we are reminded that light is a treasured diurnal force. It is appropriate then, that Concordia’s Intermedia/Cyberarts students found a unifying theme in the exploration of light as both “medium and metaphor,” a universal necessity and a conduit for creative expression.

Lumin seeks to explore the potential of illumination in various mediums. Hosted at Eastern Bloc, the exhibit showcases the work of sixteen undergrads in an IMCA 499 class and includes single and multi-channel video installations, photography, sculpture and sound, always returning to the use of light as a malleable and expressive creative instrument.

The exhibition’s title is derived from “lumen,” the unit that measures the power of light perceived by the human eye; consequently, the title emphasizes the artists’ subjective response to illumination.

Funded by the Fine Arts Students Association and largely organized by IMCA student and contributing artist Kandis Friesen, Lumin presents a number of unique installations, each offering a novel take on luminosity. Graduating IMCA student Stephen Korzenstein describes the pieces
as “intimate explorations of dreams, fears, identities and
personal histories.”

Korzenstein’s own work deals with “perspective and space,” consisting of a three-channel video of himself in a coffin-like enclosure projected onto the ground. “[It’s] as though you’re looking into a closed-captioned video of someone buried below the earth,” he said. “Because of where it’s projected, it looks three-dimensional, like a trompe l’oeil.”

Other works deal with issues as diverse as gender, perception, cultural inheritance and power dynamics.

Korzenstein describes Friesen’s piece as an interactive pedagogical installation exploring her Mennonite heritage. “She’s built a multi-channel piece in which the alphabet is translated into various Mennonite words, and it’s done in such a way that you can learn [from it].”

“Dimensional Ties,” an installation by Sarah Bowes, features a video of the artist “weaving her body through a series of taut strings,” while the strings descend from the wall and spread out along the floor.

Owen Kirby’s “Studio Aquarium for the Electronic Musician” maps the movements of two goldfish in a fish tank and translates it into “a continually shifting electronic musical composition.”

“Sweaty Life,” by Jordan Loeppky-Kolesnik, is an illuminated sculpture with “pop art
sensibility” that explores the idea of gender in sports by creating an “almost futuristic sports setting.”
Lumin promises to unite a number of themes and technologies under a single heading, offering an intriguing look at the range of creative technological applications.

Korzenstein acknowledged the difficulty collecting such a diverse range of pieces into a thematic whole.
“It’s hard to exhibit everybody’s work [with an underlying theme]. We’re all using this medium to paint with, so to speak.”

Nevertheless, light offers them a fluid canvas on which to inscribe an array of motifs and meanings; within such a broad spectrum, the pieces speak for themselves. Lumin / Eastern Bloc / 7240 Clark St. / April 16, 7:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. / April 17-18, 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

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