RMIT Gallery’s White Night Story – come on in!

The White Night is still young – it might be midnight, but RMIT Gallery is open for another 7 hours of White Night light projection and interactive bioart. Come on in!

From Girlie Werewolves to dazzling audio reactive light displays – from the time the doors opened at 7 pm, RMIT Gallery attracted a crowd to the far end of the Swanston Street White Night precinct – and made an bold impact.

Crowds were gathered before the doors opened and filled the last night of the Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts exhibition – queuing for up to 45 minutes to get into ((20hz))’s red/blue ‘nauseating’ sound-light artwork.

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Outside, the Storey Hall annex dazzled with printmaker Jazmina Cininas’ towering Girlie Werewolves offering a perfect photo opportunity as audiences jumped up on a bench and posed in the red-yellow-orange glow of the light projection.

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Crowds also patiently waited their turn to get inside RMIT Gallery, listening to Mitchell Nordine’s SciFi-organic sounds which ignited Andy Thomas’ digital forms that exploded over the austere Storey Hall facade.

Around the corner, Viral Screens, by Morbis Artis curators Sean Redmond and Darrin Verhagen, intrigued. There is plenty of time to enjoy the artworks – come and see us!

RMIT Gallery facade transforms on White Night

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If you’re heading to White Night Melbourne on Saturday make sure you pay RMIT Gallery a visit.

From dusk till dawn, the RMIT Gallery facade will be transformed into organic digital audio reactive light display called Ectoplasm by MindBuffer & digital artist Andy Thomas.

Thomas is a digital artist who creates intricate artwork and specialises in particle simulation based motion graphics, inspired by nature and technology.

MindBuffer is the combined music programming and synaesthesia exploration of RMIT lecturer Dr Joshua Batty and Mitchell Nordine. They met studying at RMIT University early 2010 and clicked instantly. Last year at White Night, they transformed RMIT’s iconic Storey Hall (home of RMIT Gallery) into a dazzling abstract light projection. Watch the video below:

“Last year was the first time we had the opportunity to projection map the entire facade of a building, which was an amazing opportunity offered by RMIT Gallery,” Batty said.

“This year, we have taken a more organic approach with the visuals, and moved beyond the geometrical tricks. What we plan is to work with the features of the facade and bring it into the three dimensional plane.

“We will also be adding an important audio component.”

Thomas is excited about using Storey Hall as ‘an enormous canvas’ for his work.

“I am so used to doing work on the small screen and this is very different. I can have organic elements growing up the building, and it’s going to very luminous as well.”

Nordine, who is handling the audio component, promises a cross between “Sci-Fi and organic”  and says people will be surprised by how the addition of sound will change their experience of the light display.

“Sound brings you a lot more into the space. Humans evolved to perceive space through sound, so it this additional element will be transformative,” Nordine said.

Anyone who has worked White Night knows the endurance required. MindBuffer and Thomas are no strangers to working festivals, having recently performed at country Victoria’s Rainbow Serpent Festival of electronic music and art.

Batty has a few tricks up his sleeve after being bed ridden for a week after last year’s White Night, which saw him working on top of the building opposite Storey Hall for the duration. It took its toll.

“This year, we have added a generative story engine, which will reveal different aspects throughout the night, without needing us to input new work the whole event,” Batty said.

“At White Night, people tend to come and go and experience lots of different things. We realised that no one sits in front of one work for a long period, so this year, we have taken that in account, along with a watchful eye on our own health.”

While you are at RMIT Gallery, step inside our Hybrid Worlds events and visit the final night of the interactive bio-art exhibition Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts, and watch ‘What big teeth you have’ an iteration of Jazmina Cininas’ Girlie Werewolf Project which will morph the face of the Storey Hall annex (next door to the Gallery) into a shape-shifting roll call of lupine ladies.

Listen to MindBuffer & Andy Thomas talk about Ectoplasm and the challenges of transforming the Storey Hall facade for White Night Melbourne.

When: 7pm Saturday 18 February to 7am Sunday 19 February
What: Ectoplasm, by MindBuffer & Andy Thomas
Where: RMIT Gallery facade (Storey Hall ) 344 Swanston Street Melbourne.

Behind the scenes – RMIT Gallery plans its Werewolf White Night event

Jazmina Cininas, What big teeth you have, projection mock-up, 2016.

Jazmina Cininas, What big teeth you have, projection mock-up, 2016.

RMIT alumnus and printmaking lecturer Dr Jazmina Cininas will present a bold new incarnation of her ongoing Girlie Werewolf Project on the Storey Hall annex next to RMIT Gallery during White Night Melbourne (18 February) from 7 pm to 7 am.

White Night is when the heart of the city comes alive, pulsating with people of all ages who surge through the streets, laneways and gardens over 12 hours to watch illuminations, installations and interactive events.

RMIT’s iconic building – stunningly renovated 21 years ago – will morph into an enormous canvas as Cininas’ light projection with bite transforms the surfaces. In a way, it is a homecoming of sorts for Cininas.

“When I commenced my Fine Art degree in 1992, the annex served as the printmaking studio and it was here that I first fell in love with the medium,” Cininas said.

RMIT Storey Hall annex, photo by Helen Rayment, RMIT Gallery

RMIT Storey Hall annex, photo by Helen Rayment, RMIT Gallery

“In the early nineteenth century, Hibernian Hall (now Storey Hall) was leased to the Women’s Political Association, whose purple, green and white flag flew from the rooftop, inspiring the colour scheme for the Ashton Raggatt McDougall renovation in 1995.”

Cininas said that cultural constructions of women as intrinsically lupine have existed throughout the centuries, whether as nurturing mothers (think Romulus and Remus), as ravening man-eaters, or as inherently demonic. Research into such representations inspired Cininas’ doctoral research and Girlie Werewolf  Project. Four her her prints are held in the RMIT University Art Collection.

Jazmina Cininas Maddalena was a True Marvel in her Day, 2011 Linocut on arches aquarelle hot press 300 gsm paper 39.8 x 40.4 cm (image), 51.5 x 49 cm (sheet) Purchased through the RMIT Art Fund, 2013 RMIT University Art Collection Accession no: RMIT.2013.47

Jazmina Cininas
Maddalena was a True Marvel in her Day, 2011
Linocut on arches aquarelle hot press 300 gsm paper
39.8 x 40.4 cm (image), 51.5 x 49 cm (sheet)
Purchased through the RMIT Art Fund, 2013
RMIT University Art Collection
Accession no: RMIT.2013.47

Cininas’ light projection What big teeth you have is very timely in the current political climate and has global as well as local resonance.

“Where you’ve seen the most female werewolves occur in popular culture have been at times when women-kind itself had been under attack,” Cininas explains.

“The female werewolf has been far more prevalent than her relatively modest profile suggests. We see this not just in the suffragette era but also—with rather more dire consequences—during the Early Modern witch-hunts.

“The nebulous figure of the female werewolf has encompassed different, often contradictory, identities over time, absorbing changing perceptions of women, wolves, morality and the monstrous throughout the centuries.

“The advent of menstrual lycanthropes and Red Riding Wolves is part of an ongoing evolution and revolution that borrows from the past in order to create new possibilities for imagining the female werewolf.”

Jazmina Cininas Christina sleeps on both sides of Grandma's bed, 2010 Linocut on paper 52.8 x 71.8 cm (image), 76.5 x 91.5 cm (sheet) Purchased through the RMIT Art Fund, 2013 RMIT University Art Collection Accession no: RMIT.2013.45

Jazmina Cininas
Christina sleeps on both sides of Grandma’s bed, 2010
Linocut on paper
52.8 x 71.8 cm (image), 76.5 x 91.5 cm (sheet)
Purchased through the RMIT Art Fund, 2013
RMIT University Art Collection
Accession no: RMIT.2013.45

The RMIT Gallery light projection for White Night Melbourne 2017 is part of this ongoing ‘evolution and revolution’. Cininas said her images of female werewolves would provide a strong feminist statement in the light of women’s Take Back the Night initiatives as they glare down larger-than-life onto the audience, like sentinels.

“These Girlie Werewolves are going to be three stories high, and say, don’t you dare mess with me!”

This is Cininas’ first foray into light projection, and she has been working closely with an animator and technical team to translate her striking artwork of female werewolves, some of which are represented in the RMIT University Art Collection.

“Generally digital artists start with the building first and then decide what can they can do to animate the building,” Cininas said.

“Whereas with my project, the challenge is how to make these images that originated as prints work with the building, particularly with the distinctive façade of the Storey Hall annex which in turn distorts the faces of the werewolves. I want to really engage with the building and animate it in some way that makes sense with the images as well.”

Jazmina Cininas, light projection test on RMIT Storey Hall, photo by Helen Rayment, RMIT Gallery

Jazmina Cininas light projection test for ‘What big teeth you have’, RMIT Storey Hall annex. Photo by Helen Rayment, RMIT Gallery

One of the challenges Cininas faces is recreating her lupine ladies will loom billboard size over Swanston Street.

“Size is one of the technical challenges that I’m presented with. As a printmaker, I know if I’ve got to print something of that size, the DPI has got to be enormous. But is it the same for projection and what happens when you project film? Can you project normal film onto that? Can you use normal film software? So these are all of the grey areas that are outside my area of expertise, and that’s where, you know, I have other people to help me out.”

It’s going to be fabulous! Come and check it out on White Night. Oh – and for the record, Jazmina Cininas is not a werewolf.
What Big Teeth You Have

When: 7pm Saturday 18 February to 7am Sunday 19 February
What: Girlie Werewolf Project by Jazmina Cininas
Where: Storey Hall annex, 342 Swanston Street Melbourne.

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Last day! Geniale Dilletanten exhibition ends 7 pm tonight

 

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The Geniale Dilletanten exhibition at RMIT Gallery incorporates a rich array of video and photographic material, audio samples, magazines, posters and other artefacts. Image: Exhibition opening, RMIT Gallery, 2015, Vicki Jones Photography

RMIT Gallery’s popular summer exhibition Geniale Dilletanten [Brilliant Dilletantes] Subculture in Germany in the 1980s + Australian Ingenious Amateurs must close at 7pm on Thursday 25 February.

This closing date is two days earlier than advertised, and necessary due to the exhibition’s Sydney opening in early March. So don’t miss out – come in during the day or after work on Thursday (we are open to 7pm) and immerse yourself in the radical movement and alternative artistic scene that exploded from Germany in the 1980s.

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The exhibition Geniale Dilletanten (Brilliant Dilletantes) presents the most comprehensive survey of 1980s German subculture to date. Image – White Night Melbourne opening, 2016, by RMIT Gallery.

RMIT Gallery also presents a flavour of what was happening locally from 1979 – 1989 through an exploration of Australian subculture.

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Audiences step back in time with an exploration of Australian subculture including the Little Band scene, the Clifton Hill Community Music Centre, and a group of young people who were part of the friendship circle of photographer Peter Milne. Image – White Night Melbourne opening, 2016, by RMIT Gallery.

And don’t forget to have one last ride on the Einstürzende Neubauten Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))) to really feel like you are in a 1980s Berlin club.

The audiokinetic jukebox was produced by Darrin Verhagen, RMIT researcher and senior lecturer in sound design and multisensory experience.

Using a six degrees of freedom motion simulator (and a reclaimed Audi passenger seat), the RMIT-based (((20Hz))) team provide an entertaining experience that takes audiences into the heart of German subculture music of the 1980s.

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Be transported – into your senses. Despite utilising a reclaimed Audi car seat, the The Klangbewegung Maschine only takes you into a visceral experience of the music of Einsturzende Naubatuen. Image White Night Melbourne opening, 2016, by RMIT Gallery

The ‘Klang Maschine’ has been likened to being in a mosh pit (without the smell!). It’s the perfect homage to the brief, bright reign of the Brilliant Amateur.

Exhibition must end 7pm on Thursday 25 February.

White Night draws audiences to RMIT Gallery light projection

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RMIT’s Storey Hall lights up during White Night Melbourne – with custom software projection by MindBuffer

RMIT’s Storey Hall was transformed for one magical evening during White Night Melbourne on Saturday 20 February by MindBuffer – RMIT’s Josh Batty and Mitchell Nordine. Their 12 hour custom projection light show ‘Architectonics’ presented by RMIT Gallery provided the crowds with plenty of photo opportunities.

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As well as the glorious light projection on Storey Hall, White Night Melbourne attracted large crowds inside RMIT Gallery enjoying the Goethe Institut’s international exhibition Geniale Dilletanten as well as the dress up print booth (in the spirit of the Brilliant Amateur!) And the 1980s subculture film festival at the Kaleide theatre next door.

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So many people wanted a ride on the Einstürzende Neubauten Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))) that we were forced to hand out numbers to the patient fans (like the butcher shop on a Saturday). Blixa Bargeld’s voice is now imprinted on our souls….

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No, not a night club but a patient crowd waiting to experience 1980s German subculture at the Geniale Dilletanten exhibition at RMIT Gallery on White Night.

 

 

Architectonics at White Night Melbourne

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Get ready for Saturday’s White Night Melbourne! Located in the heart of the Northern Lights precinct, the façade of Storey Hall (RMIT Gallery’s home) will come alive Architectonics, a high tech light show that morphs throughout the night thanks to a custom projection mapping technology by MindBuffer.

This amazing software will create a constantly changing light canvas on RMIT’s iconic building, borrowing influences from 1960s op-art enhanced for the digital age.

Playing with 40,000 lumens of light like big kids in a software sandbox, MindBuffer work the magic that made them a hit at the Burning Man festival in Nevada.

Storey Hall’s grand Victorian façade will seemingly fragment before your eyes and reassemble again as MindBuffer constantly improvise various combinations of patterns and colors whilst highlighting specific architectural features.

You can watch from dawn to dusk and never get bored, this is 12 hours of relentless creativity in action. Guaranteed – no repetitions.

Share your photos using the hashtags #urbansub #whitenightmelb and #rmit

Mindbuffer Live

MindBuffer perform at Burning Man in Nevada

RMIT Gallery caught up with Joshua Batty from MindBuffer for his tips at staying the distance at an all night event. After all, MindBuffer have performed at a number of prestigious national and international festivals including the Solar Eclipse festival in Cairns and at Burning Man in Nevada.

RMIT GALLERY What are your strategies for performing for 12 hours at White Night?

JOSHUA BATTY  Lots of caffeinated beverages! I find performing and engaging with visual stimulus pretty energising. Taking a long nap before hand to offset your body clock definitely helps too!

RMIT GALLERY We’d love an insider’s view of the famous Burning Man festival – tell all!

JOSHUA BATTY Burning Man is like nowhere I’ve ever been before. It’s in a really barren location with around 50,000 people in attendance over an area that seems to be the size of a medium city. Everywhere you go you’ll see mutant vehicles transformed into ships and huge robotic sculptures that would surely not pass the first round of health and safety checks in Australia.

Oh yeah, pretty much everything has flames erupting out of it! It’s kind of refreshing being in a place that has it’s own rules and feels a tad dangerous, especially coming from Australia that at times feels like a highly sanitised safety bubble of PG rated fun.

Burning Man - MindBuffer

MindBuffer live at Burning Man in Nevada

We played three different shows while we there over the course of eight days. Performing at Burning Man had it’s own unique challenges. Specifically, the environment is made up of really fine alkaline dust that gets into EVERYTHING. Alkaline is a corrosive compound so if it gets inside your gear it will eat away at the circuits and eventually kill your equipment. That along with frequent dust storms of the stuff makes it a bit more challenging that your normal gig.

Aside from that we had a great time playing our shows and will be heading over again in 2017 to perform there again.

RMIT GALLERY Take home message for a successful Burning Man performance?

JOSHUA BATTY If you can’t blow people’s minds purely through manipulating sound and light whilst at the same time getting them to dance – then you’ve failed.

RMIT GALLERY  Let’s travel back in time….how did you and Mitchell Nordine meet and form MindBuffer?

JOSHUA BATTY   We met six years ago at RMIT at the first class I taught. Three days after putting a track we wrote together up on Soundcloud, we were approached and signed to Enig’matik records alongside some of their biggest musical influences. It all happened very quickly!

RMIT GALLERY   When did you decide to add the visuals to the music?

JOSHUA BATTY   We had grand visions of tightly synchronised visuals that would enhance the music, so we taught themselves how to program software so we could create something that didn’t already exist.

RMIT GALLERY   What’s next after White Night Melbourne?

JOSHUA BATTY    We are currently in the process of building the world’s first Artificial Intelligent generative audiovisual composition software for upcoming performances.

We get a lot of inspiration from projection artists such as 1024 architecture, Universal Everything and Playmodes to name a few. Those guys are really pushing the boundaries. Our friends Eloi and Santi from Playmodes in particular just did a show where they mapped the 300 meter wide façade of the Lichtspiele Castle in Karlsruhe, Germany.

For that work they needed to use 24 x 21,000 lumen projectors outputting a resolution of 10800 x 1080 pixels!! So for use there is still room to grow. We have been talking recently with Playmodes and we both hope that somehow the universe will allow a MindBuffer + Playmodes collaboration in the near future!

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Music, Melbourne + Me: 40 years of Mushroom + Melbourne’s Popular Music Culture, RMIT Gallery, 2013. Photo Mark Ashkanasy. The Morphos was designed by Joshua Batty while working on his PhD at RMIT and features software technology used in MindBuffer’s Architectonics projection on Storey Hall for White Night Melbourne 2016.

RMIT GALLERY This is fascinating for many reasons – not the least the fact that all of this has come out of your PhD research at RMIT. Can you talk about that a bit?

JOSHUA BATTY  My research was in Audiovisual Granular Synthesis which basically involves dissecting audio and visual media into tiny fragments just long enough to active the sensory input system. I showcased an earlier version of the custom software at RMIT Gallery’s Music, Melbourne + Me exhibition in 2013, creating The Morphos, a large cubic projection-mapped sculpture that delighted crowds at White Night Melbourne in 2014.

I developed software that does this slicing process for me and then reassembles these fragments in new and novel ways leading to an almost hallucinatory perceptual effect. My software, called Kortex, also has functionality for doing projection mapping, generating procedural computer graphics and controlling DMX lighting fixtures and laser projectors all in real-time.

As such, I don’t have the need now to use anyone else’s software anymore which is a pretty liberating feeling when you get there. Still, Kortex is always in constant development and I’ll most likely continue to keep adding features to it.

Don’t miss RMIT Gallery at White Night Melbourne! Watch the 1980s sub culture film festival, dress up print booth and see the popular summer exhibition Geniale Dilletanten: Subculture in Germany in the 1980s – AND ride the thrilling Einstürzende Neubauten Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))) to really feel like you are in a 1980s Berlin club.

 

 

 

 

Strike a pose at RMIT Gallery at White Night Melbourne

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RMIT Gallery volunteer and RMIT Master of Arts (Art Management) student Angela Hernandez strikes a pose at the 80s dress-up booth.

The countdown is on – only days to go! RMIT Gallery will be the university focus for White Night Melbourne on Saturday February 20 with the Goethe-Institut subculture music exhibition Geniale Dilletanten open from 7 pm to 7 am.

Come and ride The Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))), stand in Swanston Street and watch ‘Architectonics’ a granular synthesis projection on Storey Hall (RMIT Gallery’s home) dazzling the entire night.

There will be a 1980s print photo booth and dress ups. Strike a pose and get out your smart phone and share the #urbansub moment with your friends on social media – and then take away a Tag Snaps print to keep. How very analogue!

Chill out at the subculture German music film festival at Kaleide Theatre next door presented by RMIT Gallery and the Goethe-Institut Australien. Relive the days of a divided Berlin with films such  including Flüstern und Schreien: ein Rock Report (Whisper & Shout – the East German Rock revolution, Berlin Super 80 (1978-1984),and B-Movie: Lust & Sound in West Berlin (Unclassified Strictly 18+). All films are in German with English subtitles. (Some nudity and adult themes. No disabled access to Kaleide Theatre).

Remember – it’s all free! We hope to see you there.

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Ann-Catrin Dornauer, an intern with the Goethe-Institut, tests out the Geniale Dilletanten print booth. You just need a smart phone and some attitude!