W2: Community Media Arts Vancouver BC

UTOPIA: 2nd Annual Festival of Women in Digital Culture

Schedule of Events
March 3-10, 2012W2 Media Cafe

The second annual Utopia Festival lands at W2 with film screenings, workshops, a free International Women’s Day community fair, and epic evening performances. The festival showcases women in the Vancouver community ‘making our future through technology’.  

Utopia invites women involved in digital culture to share skills, celebrate creativity and promote our work as makers. The public (including men) are welcome to attend all Utopia evening events.  

Festival Pass only $25. Individual tickets start at $10. Many events are free.
Tickets onsale at W2 Media Cafe and online http://utopia2012.eventbrite.com/

All events at W2 Media Cafe, 111 W Hastings St, Vancouver

Produced by a volunteer crew with the W2 Community Media Arts Society. Thanks to all those who assisted and the artists who are sharing! Come out and support local women artists!

Festival Launch Event
March 3: Event - 8pm Carmen Aguirre, Canada Reads 2012 Winner
with Shad, DJ Adriana Tagle and DJ Paola

Douglas & McIntyre presents the 2012 CBC Canada Reads winner.
Tickets $10 online at http://utopiacarmen.eventbrite.com/
#canadareads #somethingfierce

Carmen Aguirre is a Vancouver-based writer and theatre artist who has worked extensively in North and South America. She has written or co-written eighteen plays, including The Refugee Hotel, which was nominated for a Dora Mavor Moore Award for best new play in 2010. Something Fierce is her first book.

Shad is a hiphop luminary with a master's degree in liberal studies, Shad is often pegged as "the thinking man's rapper," thanks to his witty wordplay, thoughtful lyrics and smooth delivery. Shad was born in Kenya to Rwandan parents. He was raised in London, Ontario, and now calls Vancouver home.

Paola Rodriguez was born in Mexico City and has lived in BC for the last 20 years. She has always had a strong connection to music and in the last few years she has been moving people on the dancefloor with her collection of cumbias, latin hip-hop and reggaeton. She loves dancing, acting, djing, and singing and when not playing she is active with natural health care.

Adriana Tagle hails from Mexico and has lived in BC for a decade. She brings the dance floor to life with a dynamic mix of Latin sounds.

International Women’s Day Festival
March 10, 2-5pm
The B.C. Federation of Labour, Vancouver & District Labour Council and W2’s Utopia Festival invite women to a family friendly celebration of the 101st International Women’s Day. Children and men are welcome, and it’s free to attend.
The W2 Atrium will be packed with information tables, face painters, performers, food, and much more. A film room will screen by and about women. Free Utopia Tech workshops will take place inside W2 Media Cafe.

Utopia Tech Talks
A daily (12-1:30pm) lunchtime technology talk with special guests, and plenty of space for discussion and learning. Purchase lunch at W2 Media Cafe ($5-8)

Wednesday, March 7 - Women Installation Artists, Sarah Shamash, Julie Gendron (Interactive) will present examples from their art practise and works that they admire to look at the effect of digital technologies on the intended outcome of the artwork; If technology can add or get in the way; How technology can be intimidating and/or empowering as a woman artist.

Thursday, March 8 - Women and Wearable Technology, Stephanie Wiriahardja
This tech talk introduces a project called Point Locus where Stephanie Wiriahardja, one of the co-founders, will discuss her journey of becoming a creative problem solver and the design of the wearable tactile way finding system for the visually impaired. The project has been featured in popular blogs such as TrendHunter and FashioningTech, as well as showcased in San Mateo Maker Faire last year and TEI Conference just a week ago. For more information on this project visit http://www.pointlocus.com/gallery

Friday, March 9 - Women Video and Social Activism, Erica Lapadat-Janzen will discuss her own work and the socially-engaged roles she sees women can play with video tools. Erica Lapadat-Janzen is an interdisciplinary artist/curator currently living and working in Vancouver, BC. She is currently in her last semester at Emily Carr in the Visual Arts program. In the last year, Erica has been a force curating and organizing arts events that create exposure for emerging artists. She currently works with social media driven interactive work.


Utopia Festival Movie Night: How Much Further (Que Tan Lejos)

Wednesday, March 7, 6pm. W2 Media Cafe, second floor.

Each month we pick a movie and a topic for discussion. This month - in keeping with the themes of Utopia Festival: Women In Digital Culture - the topic is women's rights, modern society and how the roles of women have or haven't changed? Are they for the better or for worse?

In the film, How Much Further?, Esperanza and Tristeza both have to get to Cuenca. However, by an unlucky turn of events, the bus they are on gets delayed due to a worker strike. Taking their journey into their own hands, they decide to hitchhike to Cuenca. Along the way they meet interesting characters who help them re-evaluate the purpose of their journey.

Spanish with English subtitles | Watch The Trailer (Spanish Only).

Experimental Aesthetics of Female DIY Video
Friday, March 9, 7:30pm Screening takes place adjacent to W2 at the new National Film Board studio cinema.  (SEATING IS LIMITED) $5-10 at the door

8:30pm Post-screening Reception at W2 Media Cafe with filmmakers, guests, and catering by W2 Chef Karen McAthy.

In the course of video art practices, the shifting power of access from cinema to digital has brought a rise of possibility in independent production among women artists. Light-weight, portable equipment, wider access to media art education and tools are contributing factors to revolutionizing representations of women and minority narratives.
This program of short videos from Vancouver and beyond reflects a diversity of sophisticated, handcrafted aesthetics and narratives through the lens’ of 11 women artists, participants in critical experimentations and shifts of power in our contemporary media art landscape.

Artists Include:
“Passage”, Angela Kendall, 2011, Canada
“Estudios de Paisaje”, Amanda Gutierrez, 2010
“Pink Girl”, Sarah Shamash, 2010, Canada
“Sadie the Saddest Sadist”, Mary Reid Kelly (USA), 2009
“Fragment III – Imago”, Sebnem Ozpeta, 2011
“Up the Rabbit Hole”, Asa Mori, 2008
“We are all in your Head”, Sacha Fink, 2006
“White Palace”, Leigh Fisher, 2003
“dry idea”, Velveeta Krisp, 2007
“Her Sugar Is”, Dana Claxton, 2009
“Hey F*** Face”, Amber Dawn, 2008
“Butch Tits”, Jen Crothers, 2010

W2 Urban Screens
A selection of works will be installed as part of W2's Urban Screen program in the Woodward's Atrium. “Creeper” (by Kim Dawn), “Precipitate” (by Jennifer Campbell), and “City Under Siege” (by Miriam Needoba) will be seen by thousands of the public in front of the W2 Media Cafe.

* The event graphic is a still from “Estudios de Paisaje” by Amanda Gutierrez, overlaid with the title of this program.

W2 Morning Radio Project
7:30-7:50am Monday to Friday. Listen to daily radio interviews on the W2 Morning Radio Project broadcast on Coop Radio 102.7FM and online and archived here.
Listen to Amy Goodman 6-7am and our regular daily show live in-studio 7-8am.
Women, Violence And the Law: On March 7+8 our Co-Host is Angela MacDougall of Battered Women’s Support Services as she interviews guests Laura Track, Susan Boyd, and Rosa Elena Arteaga.
Also check out The F Word, March 5, 12-1pm, Coop Radio 102.7FM interviews Utopia Festival organisers, http://www.feminisms.org/
and listen to CJSF 90.1FM for an International Women's Day special program presented by CJSF SFU Student Radio.

April Smith: Photo exhibit
March 5-30, Woodward’s Atrium
Social media maven April Smith presents some of her favourite digital images of women in our DTES neighbourhood. April Smith works with AHA Media, a social media project, which has a massive archive of digital stories by and for inner-city residents. The exhibition is supported in part by DTES Neighbourhood Small Arts Grants.

Utopia Festival Showcase I
March 9, Doors 10pm-late

$10 Advance tickets available at W2 Media Cafe or online http://utopia2012.eventbrite.com/  More at door.
Last year we had a massive event with 1250 catching 30 artists including Peaches, this year we’re in the more intimate 10,000 sq ft W2 Media Cafe. All three levels will come to life with music and media art. More DJs on Friday, more electroacoustic on Saturday!

VJs: Liz Van Allen Cairns & Jessica Parsons // Lomax

10pm - Square Root of Evil


Composing since 1999, playing out since 2004, the Square Root of Evil (aka Jen Pearson) has been featured on over half a dozen compilations on US, UK & Canadian labels. She has released two EPs, "Chirping Data" out on Belladonna, and "Killerbytes" which can be downloaded from Xynthetic. She represented Vancouver in the 2006 North American Laptop Battle Championship in Seattle after making her way to the top in her hometown, and has played countless live shows in Vancouver and Europe, including festivals such as Soundwave and Mutek. She has played alongside such artists as Plaid, Venetian Snares, Books on Tape, FFF, Cursor Miner, and Captain Ahab, and has received glowing reviews in Grooves and XLR8R magazines.

This special DJ set will be of the mellower variety, ramping us into the evening’s events.

11pm - ROIIC

Based in Vancouver, ROIIC (aka Mori Zuiten) is an electroacoustic music major at SFU Contemporary Arts. ROIIC specializes in the new bass sounds of this generation (dubstep, drumstep, moombahton, progressive-electro house). As a producer, she has produced soundscape and electroacoustic music compositions for student films. These can be found at soundcloud.com/roiic.

12am - Natasha Kmeto                          
Natasha Kmeto is an electro hip-hop, singer-producer based in Portland, OR. With a rich musical background in jazz, r&b, electronic and hip-hop she likes to describe her music as “futuristic soul.”
Kmeto was born and raised in California, playing and touring with bands of all genres since the age of 15. She completed the Keyboard Performance program at Musician’s Institute in Hollywood and soon thereafter relocated to Portland in 2007. The move helped rekindle Natasha’s creativity and passion for music which got lost in the bustle and industry of LA. Here, Kmeto was able to explore and take inspiration from her biggest influences, ranging from the cutting edge sounds of Flying Lotus to the classic soul hits of Carole King. As the Portland Mercury writes, “Kmeto’s found a trance-ready spot that tugs at the sleeves of hip hop, IDM, and maybe even a tinge of goth, with a singing voice that keeps the digital zeroes and ones imbued with flesh and blood.”

1am - Rhia Wellbellove
Born and raised in Canada, Rhia Wellbelove has been expressing herself through music since she started spinning records at the tender age of sixteen. Rhia’s unrelenting charisma and drive combined with exceptional skill has led her to become one of Vancouver’s most prominent DJ's. Rhia's love for music can be felt through the unique and moving house and tech-house sets that she creates.

Influenced by her travels around the world Rhia always brings out a diverse brand of house music to the dance floor with elements of funk, latin, electro and funky corky tech house. Collaborating her creative influences and years of experience have allowed her to develop a vast amount of knowledge, skill, and technique, which has allowed her to polish her craft to near perfection producing a unique blend of music guaranteeing an unforgettable set every time.  
2am - Miss Myte
Since moving to Vancouver in the fall of 2004, Lyndsy Brow, a.k.a. Miss Myte, has become a name synonymous with quality house and techno. While always staying true to her unique musical tastes, and never catering to commercial demand, Miss Myte has had the opportunity to open the stage for world renowned producers in some of the best venues and festivals BC has to offer. Her passion and commitment to searching high and low for new or unheard musical gems has set her apart and garnered the respect of her peers. Playing in clubs, outdoor festivals, and after-hour events over the last 9 years, she has had the honor of sharing the stage with the likes of M.A.N.D.Y. Miss Kittin & the Hacker, Alex Smoke, DVS1, Stacey Pullen, John Tejada, Tyler Stadius, Jay Tripwire, Adam Marshall and Jay Hunsberger.

3am - Kasey Riot
Currently one of the most prominent female DJs in Vancouver's club scene, Kasey Riot's been setting dancefloors on fire since 2007 and has proven herself as a heavy hitter with multiple residencies, headlining shows and frequent tours. With a classically trained background, she has gone from learning piano and theory from her Polish mother, to fronting punk rock bands, but has now taken her knowledge and passion for music to the dance floors. Her massive dirty electro and dubstep sets have earned her a heavy following and she's played alongside DJs like Steve Aoki, Tom Stephan and Neoteric to name a few. She currently produces and remixes EDM and plays at some of Vancity's biggest clubs, but her passion and drive are setting course to a limitless future.

Utopia Conference
March 10, 2-6pm Workshops
2-6pm Hands-on workshops to inspire your creative path in digital culture, video, music production, recording, distribution, DJing, VJing and more with Mama Miche (Calgary) and Lisa De Lux & Jenna Rae Jacobson (Vancouver), Vicki Moulder, Liane Morrisette and more!

From the hosts of the Ladies' Hacking Night at Vancouver Hack Space back in December.  Women’s Hacking Event with Vicki Moulder and Liane Morrisette, of Vancouver Mini Maker Faire.  Here are more highlights from December.

Long Table Dinner
March 10, 6-7pm join Chef Karen McAthy and some of your fave Vancouver digital artists for a sit down and conversations. $5-15 (pay what you can)

Open Space Workshops
7-8pm  bring your conversation and share your ideas and questions with others.

Panel Discussion
8pm  Women producers have forged innovation in the Vancouver digital art scene.  In this panel, speakers will provide actionable insights into field of digital production and provide a context for understanding women’s unique contributions to this dynamic industry.
1) Digital Media - Cease Wyss (Squamish Nation)
2) Video/Interactive Art works - Elizabeth Vander Zaag
3) Music Producer/Interactive Art - Jennifer Roworth & Julie Andreyev
4) DJ/Music Producer - Lisa De Lux
5) Talent Agent/DJ - Miche Stirling, Stirling Agency (Calgary)

Electroacoustic Performance
9:30pm  Vancouver Experimental Theremin Orchestra (VETO)

The Vancouver Experimental Theremin Orchestra (VETO) was formed by the participants in a theremin building workshop held at VIVO, Vancouver, in the summer of 2011. VETO is the only theremin orchestra in Canada, and one of a few worldwide. Each member of the orchestra has a uniquely tuned instrument which contributes to the richness of the sound.

Utopia Showcase II
March 10, 10pm
$10 Advance tickets available at W2 Media Cafe or online http://utopia2012.eventbrite.com/ More at door.
After kicking-off with an earlier performance by Vancouver Experimental Theremin Orchestra, the Utopia main stage on the bottom level of W2 will come to life with music and media art - celebrating women in Vancouver’s electro and electroacoustic scenes!

Host: DJ Wobangs
Visuals: VJ Brady Marks & VJ Julie Gendron

10:00 Kellarrissa
Larissa Loyva, also known as "Kellarissa" (Finnish for "in the basement") has been performing and touring with Vancouver-based bands for the past decade. In 2008 she released Flamingo, her first solo album on Mint Records. The followup album, Moon of Neptune, was released on March 29, 2011.
Kellarissa takes inspiration from films, outer space, and foreign lands to create swirling layers of melodies and harmonies with vocal loops and synthesizers. Occasionally she writes and sings in Finnish, a language naturally suited to descriptions of the power of nature

10:45 prOphecy Sun


11:30 SciFiSol (Portland)
SciFiSol's self-produced solo project is a collage of soundscapes that tell a story of mystery and dreams as she fuses her love of the obscure with a desire to create innovative and experimental music. SciFiSol is currently producing her own form of Electronica-- fueled by complex rhythms and textures while floating upon ambient, emotional overtones, and featuring her unique voice hauntingly interlaced throughout.

12:15 Terror Bird

1:00   Myths
Lief Hall and Quinne Rodgers play dark electronic dance as Vancouver's MYTHS, creating tapestries of dark, deep listening soundscapes, noise and dance club hits that explore the mythology of contemporary western society. They have been categorized as everything from "feminine pop-noir" to "sinister electro performance art", pushing pop accessibility far into art and experimentation.

2:00   Mama Miche, Stirling Agency (Calgary)
Calgary based DJ Micha Stirling aka Mama Miche has attended every Shambhala Festival. Part of the duo ‘Bitchin,’ Mama Miche has over ten years experience in promotions and artist and tour management—first with Mother’s Cupboard, now with Stirling Agency, repping acts like Smalltown DJs, Wax Romeo and Mat the Alien—has organized and managed multiple tours for leading acts. She has landed her own duos gigs around the world, alongside major electronic acts like Classixx, LA Riots, Steve Aoki, Stanton Warriors, Krafty Kuts, Fort Knox 5, Malente, Bassnectar and Glitch Mob. She has played all over Canada, UK, Spain, Miami and Hawaii.  

Utopia Festival
℅ W2 Community Media Arts Society
111 W Hastings, Vancouver, BC, V6B 1H4
@W2Woodwards | 604.689.9896 | #UtopiaFest


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Comment by Mary Bennett on February 13, 2013 at 10:26am

Anything happening this year?


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