The Reorganized Organ mentorship project
The Reorganized Organ is a collaborative musical instrument-building project, taking place over twelve sessions from September to December 2017.
With the help of mentor-artists George Rahi and Marc St. Pierre, ten young artists are collaborating to take apart and repurpose a discarded electronic organ, and other wasted electronics, reorganizing the components to invent and create an orchestra of experimental musical instruments and other sound-making devices. The project culminates in an performance on December 1 at VIVO Media Arts Centre presented with the help of Vancouver New Music. This project is funded by the BC Arts Council, and also partners with Free Geek Vancouver and MakerMobile.
Participants are learning:
→ how to make a musical instrument
→ how instrument design affects sound-making possibilities
→ how different sonic textures are produced mechanically and electronically
→ how the electronic organ relates to modern day synthesizers
→ skills like woodworking, soldering, listening, and improvisation
→ about “e-waste”
→ about organizations that process electronic devices we throw away
→ how to collaborate with other artists
Participants receive an honorarium per session, and artist fee for final performance.
Project runs from September to December, 2017.
George Rahi is a sound artist, instrument inventor and maker, installation artist, and youth mentor exploring new hybrids between the acoustic, electronic, mechanical, and sculptural realms. Rahi’s practice investigates large-scale instruments, such as pipe organs and Indonesian gamelans, re-constructing their technologies to evoke new experiences of sound, space, and public culture.
He has produced installations and performances for the Western Front, Vancouver New Music, and the youth theatre company Miscellaneous Productions. With support from the Western Front artist-run centre, George worked with students from Sir Charles Tupper Secondary and Aboriginal Focus School to create their own shadow plays for BC Youth Week 2015. Receiving an ArtStarts Creative Spark Grant in 2016, George ran an instrument-making workshop for youth using discarded materials. He is currently Artists-In-Residence with the Vancouver Parks Board’s Field House program at Hadden Park with artist collective Publik Secrets. He co-founded the Vancouver Tool Library, and is the founder of the percussion ensemble Gamelan Bike Bike. More information available at georahi.com
Marc St. Pierre is a researcher and a community-engaged artist in the classroom. His main creative medium is data, which he maps to sound using computer programming languages in a practice called “sonification.” In his lab as well as his maker space, Marc blurs the lines between science and art by building technology to express environmental data as sound. Fostering an ecological and environmental sensibility through data communication, his practice challenges and extends existing systems of scientific knowledge distribution.
Marc has won a handful of awards for his work, the most recent being Best Use of Sound at the International Conference for Auditory Display for his publication on air quality sonification. He regularly teaches in a range of topics including programming, sound editing and making, and has also been commissioned to work with community organizations like City Opera Vancouver, the Vancouver Chamber Choir, and the City of Surrey among others. Marc is also currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in Communication at SFU. Click to see samples of Marc’s projects, or visit sonificationjournals.tumblr.com to read his research.