Curated by Malcolm Levy and Kate Armstrong, Upgrade 2.0 @ New Forms was a special event featuring an afternoon of artists talks and presentations centering around themes of audio and interactivity by artists and researchers including Vitamins For You, In The Nursery, Ben Nevile, NomIg, and artists from Reverie: Noise City including Jean Routhier, Alberto Guedea and Ken Roux.

Beginning at 12 there were A/V artist talks by In The Nursery, Matt Roberts and Nathan Wolek of the Mobile Performance Group and Vitamins For You. These were followed by a MAX/Jitter workshop by Ben Nevile.

Starting at 4 pm, Jean Routhier, Alberto Guedea and Ken Roux from Reverie: Noise City spoke about the project, a virtual urban landscape on the Web. Inside this city, an ever-expanding group of international sound artists will build venues for their work. Reverie imagines an urban landscape that includes a variety of poetic extrapolations on the types of regions that exist in our cities a merging of Sunset Boulevard, Lower Manhattan, boat houses on the canal, the Surrey Landfill site, and a public botanical garden of the future. The web interface for the project consists of an abstracted grid. The contributing artists will locate themselves within the grid and define the characteristics of their environment and sound venue. Over time, the growing collection of audio art venues will define a structure of neighbourhoods and communities in which artists plan time-based events and engage other inhabitants in collaboration and exchange.

The title, Reverie, comes from a novel entitled "The Artificial Kid", by Bruce Sterling. The protagonist in this story (the Kid) is the focal point of a futuristic reality TV show. He moves around in a disjointed urban landscape traveling from regions of neglect, violence and industrial decay to the mansions of wealth and power. The book is both a comment on our contemporary North American urban phenomenon and an exploration of virtuality. Sterling puts forth the idea that at some point when you take on or wear a virtual personality it becomes a real personality. To a degree, the actor who plays a long-standing role becomes the character and the distinction between real and virtual breaks down. The project also refers to William Gibson's "Walled City" and other non-fictional on-line virtual communities (MUDs, chat groups, networked gaming groups, BLOGS, etc.). "Walled City" exists as a distributed network game that requires continuous human interaction to keep it alive and functioning. The players adopt a persona and take responsibility for maintaining different parts of the city. These parts are then passed from player to player as the participants log-in and out of the game. In a similar fashion, Reverie imagines a city that is activated purely through the ongoing activities and exchanges of sound-artists.

The day ended with a reception at Open Studios.

Schedule: 12 - 7:30 pm
12 1 PM: A/V artist talks by In The Nursery
1 - 2 PM: Matt Roberts and Nathan Wolek of the Mobile Performance Group
2 3 PM: Vitamins for You
3 4 PM: MAX/Jitter workshop featuring Ben Nevile
4 5:30 PM: Jean Routhier, Alberto Guedea and Ken Roux from Reverie: Noise City
6 - 7:30 PM: Reception

New Forms Media Society Open Studios
#200 252 East 1st Avenue
(Entrance in back)
Free Admission


Mobile Performance Group
In The Nursery
Reverie:Noise City