Node 9 Summer School 2018

Hosted by Dr. David Ogborn and Dr. Paula Gardner, Department of Communication Studies and Multimedia, The Node 9 Summer Workshops are a unique opportunity for media arts growth and knowledge exchange. Participants will spend five days on the McMaster campus, with specific sessions each day devoted to technical instruction, individual and collective guided work. There will be daily master classes by international artists, performances and discussions.

Workshops: Monday 4th June – Friday 8th June, 10 AM – 5 PM each day
Culminating Performance: Friday June 8th 5 PM
Networked Imagination Laboratory, Pulse Lab, and L R Wilson Hall
McMaster University Main Campus
1280 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Individuals will be asked to choose a stream preference. Participants will be welcome to move between streams during the week; work will take place in Pulse Lab and the Networked Imagination Laboratory (McMaster campus) and in LR Wilson wall.  Each day will offer a master class that all will attend as well as time to work individually or in self-created teams, in the various labs and work spaces.

Stream 1: Multimedia Storytelling: This stream focuses on the art of storytelling, allowing the story to choose its medium – analogue, digital or hybrid. Engaging Pulse Lab’s approach to making digital tools accessible, participants will be encouraged to transform a story idea into an experience, focusing on the intended audience, message, and how digital or analogue affordances effectively transform the story into an art form. We will provide support for technologies including storyboarding, introductory digital game design and storytelling platforms, podcasting, and more. The stream will be hosted by Pulse Lab, funded by the Asper Foundation, providing building and brainstorming space, projection space, and an array of digital tools.

Stream 2: Audio Programming: This stream focuses on diverse applications of audio programming, including live coding performance, laptop orchestras, network music collaborations, sound installations, generative music, sonification, the design of new digital musical instruments and more. We’ll use software like Estuary, Max, Pure Data, SuperCollider and TidalCycles to take advantage of the rich technical resources provided by the Networked Imagination Laboratory (NIL, a research space funded by the Canada Foundation for Innovation and Ontario’s Ministry of Research, Innovation, and Science), including a large, reconfigurable array of loudspeakers, and servers and high bandwidth connectivity for network music.



Any further questions or comments can be emailed to Stephanie Pereira <>.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I bring my own laptop and equipment? Yes. It is encouraged but not mandatory.

Is it necessary to attend all days? Yes. Individuals are asked to attend the full week of the workshop.

Is there a cost for the workshop? No. All technical support is provided.

Is parking available? Parking is available on campus. Information regarding reduced rates to come.

Is experience required? No. We welcome applications from individuals of all experience levels, and those with none. Our intention is to combine individuals with diverse backgrounds and skill sets to ignite shared learning experiences, creative process and discoveries.  We also seek to blend the experiences of those within and beyond the university community in this week of making and learning

Getting to Hamilton by air: Most international visitors will arrive through Toronto’s Pearson International Airport (YYZ) from which it is easy to travel on to downtown Hamilton via the #40 express coach operated by the GO regional public transit service.

A more limited selection of routes arrives directly at Hamilton International Airport (YHM), including flights from New York City and various parts of Canada. From YHM, a local taxi or local #20 bus (last departures end of the afternoon) will take travellers onwards to downtown Hamilton.

A third possible arrival airport is Toronto’s downtown island airport, YTZ, with frequent flights from Montréal and New York City, in particular. To reach Hamilton from YTZ: a free shuttle from the airport takes you to Union Station, and from there both the Lakeshore West train and #16 express bus connections operated by GO transit take you onwards to Hamilton. (These are also the bus/train connections Torontonians would be most likely to use to arrive at the conference.)

By train: VIA Rail/Amtrak services connect Hamilton to Montréal, Ottawa, New York City and Windsor/Detroit, and beyond. If coming by train, select Aldershot station as your destination. From Aldershot station, quick bus connections provided by the GO regional public transit service will take you either to downtown Hamilton or directly to the McMaster university campus.

By car: Hamilton is a short drive from Buffalo and Detroit, and within a day’s drive from Montréal, Chicago, Boston and New York City. Most hotels in downtown Hamilton provide free parking. On the McMaster campus, parking in daily economy lot is around $7/day.

The Node 9 Workshops, hosted by Dr. David Ogborn and Dr. Paula Gardner, will be facilitated by the following Research Assistants:



Ian Steinberg is a doctoral candidate in the Communication, New Media and Cultural studies program at McMaster University where he studies documentary film and is producing a documentary about the cultural history of photocopiers.



Currently a PhD Candidate in Communication, New Media, and Cultural Studies at McMaster, Luis’ research intersects with live coding, metacreation, and software studies. From 2010 to 2013 he worked at the National Center for the Arts (Mexico) exploring live coding and Free/Libre and Open Source Software. He is a member of the live coding collective RGGTRN (Mexico) and the laptop ensemble the Cybernetic Orchestra.



Jamie Beverley is a Masters student at McMaster University studying Communications and New Media. His research interests are situated within the fields of Live Coding, New Interfaces for Musical Expression, and Human-Computer Interaction. His masters research involves the creation of a distributive and participatory web-based sound installation and performance system that seeks to re-position acoustic ecology in light of recent post-humanist ecosophy. Jamie’s artistic work revolves around musical live coding, primarily using Tidalcycles and SuperCollider. Jamie has also explored the artistic and technological affordances of audience smartphones and Web Audio for sound diffusion and audience interaction. He has performed most notably at the International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression (2017), and the International Conference on Live Coding (2016, 2017).



I am an artist, designer, musician and recent graduate of the Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design (IAMD) Program at OCAD University, receiving my Master’s of Design (MDes) Degree. My previous and current research revolves around rapid prototyping (3D printing) and manufacturing, along with sustainable and critical design. This research led me to examine historical forms of communication, communal sharing, consumption, and how these systems can inform current technology to exist in a more ambient and open-source form, especially in a widely internet enabled society.



  • Stream 1: Multimedia Storytelling in Pulse Lab, TSH-719
  • Stream 2: Audio Programming in Networked Imagination Laboratory, TSH-B108
  • All masterclasses in Black Box Theatre, 1st floor of L.R. Wilson Hall

Day 1: Monday, June 4

9-10 AM Light breakfast and beverages outside Black Box Theatre, 1st floor of L.R. Wilson Hall     

10-11 AM Opening Session                                                                                                 

11-12:30 PM MASTERCLASS: PLAYING WITH GAMES with Emma Westecott (free and open to the public)

12:30-2 PM Lunch

2-3 PM Stream Orientation                                                                                                 

3-4 PM Workshops             

Stream 1: Grow a Game, Stream 2: Patterns in TidalCycles and SuperCollider       

4-5 PM Collaborative Work

Day 2: Tuesday, June 5

10-11 AM Workshops

Stream 1: Field Recording for Sound Design, Stream 2: Synthesizers and Parameter Mapping

11-12:30 PM MASTERCLASS: MEDIA CHOREOGRAPHIES with Joana Chicau (free and open to the public)

12:30-1:30 PM Lunch

1:30-2:30 PM Workshops

Stream 1: Pitching Multimedia Projects, Stream 2: Network Music Protocols and Practices

2:30-5 PM Collaborative Work

Day 3: Wednesday, June 6

10-11 AM Workshops

Stream 1: Collaboration for InnovationStream 2: Machine Learning and Listening  

11-12:30 PM MASTERCLASS: INNOVATION, CREATIVITY, AND CONFLICT with Suzanne Stein (free and open to the public)

12:30-1:30 PM Lunch

1:30-2:30 PM Workshops   

Stream 1: TBD, Stream 2: Creating Languages with Combinatorial Parsers                  

2:30-5 PM Collaborative Work

Day 4: Thursday, June 7

10-11 AM Workshops

Stream 1: Participatory and Action Research, Stream 2: Visual Music

11-12:30 PM MASTERCLASS: EXPLORING DATA-DRIVEN VR WITH ARTS.CODES with Margaret Anne Schedel and Melissa F. Clarke (free and open to the public)

12:30-1:30 PM Lunch

1:30-2:30 PM Workshops

Stream 1: TBD, Stream 2: Data Sonification and Generative Music

2:30-5 PM Collaborative Work

Day 5: Friday, June 8

10-4:30 PM Collaborative Work

5-7 PM Final Exhibition/Performance in Black Box Theatre, 1st floor of L.R. Wilson Hall (free and open to the public)

A project of the:    




Digital games are a critical form in which makers express models of play that create meaning beyond entertainment. Game culture is pervasive and, amidst a wider technological context that invites all our active participation, provides one setting for the rise in creative expression evident in contemporary times. Games collapse the gaps between makers and players in a uniquely active manner and whilst this talk centres on possibilities for game making, all players co-create their own gameplay experience, which holds potential for exploring our individual agency in play. The approaches discussed here are intended to offer frameworks applicable across digital creative endeavour.


The masterclass will offer a blueprint for exploring choreographic meaning and notions of embodiment within digital media environments — leading to a reflection on programming and being programmed: How can we move away from pre-choreographed environments and move towards building our own choreographies? How can we find alternatives to fixed ways of building space-time conditions within digital spheres? How can we rethink composition, participation, relations and articulations between bodies and technologies? A critical and exploratory approach to how human movement, perception and embodiment work may give artistic and programming practices new (and more critical) pointers. The research methodology  aims at breaking the distancing between mind/body, self/other, subject/object, discovery/invention. Enhancing the idea of process over product: processes of becoming, becoming structures, becoming codes and scripts. The masterclass will privilege the use of Free/Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS) models and technologies and focus mainly on web programming. Notions of live coding practices will also be introduced. Nonetheless there will be space to discuss other technological approaches and the implementation of this methodology within other computer languages and contexts.


In this masterclass, Suzanne Stein will discuss the relationship between different types of creativity and innovation. Working groups that encourage a diversity of perspective and thought are often the most successful. At the same time, by necessity, they encourage conflict through their process. This master class will review conditions for high performance team functioning, as well as the flip-side – typical dysfunction: how to detect, and how to deal with it.

MASTERCLASS 4: EXPLORING DATA-DRIVEN VR WITH ARTS.CODES with Melissa F. Clarke and Margaret Anne Schedel is a platform founded by Melissa F. Clarke and Margaret Schedel to celebrate computational underpinnings of art in all forms. In addition to a website with articles about historical and current artistic practices, serves as a female-led artist collective creating interactive immersive experiences from data. Six months after the launch of any project, we open source the programming used to create the work so other artists can benefit from our knowledge and continue to advance this new art form. In this talk we will dissect, háček, a VR experience developed from IP data logs for Shmoo Con. We use visualization, sonification and light gamification to create a multimedia narrative, employing data to inform an immersive installation while positioning it’s larger impact towards metaphors of networked landscape, security and wayfinding.


Emma Westecott is Associate Professor in Game Design and Director of the game:play lab at the Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD) University in Toronto, Canada. She has worked in the game industry for over 20 years: in development, research and the academy. She achieved international recognition for working closely with Douglas Adams as producer for the best-selling CD-ROM Adventure Game, Starship Titanic (1998, Simon & Schuster). Since then, Emma has built up a worldwide reputation for developing original as well as popular game projects.



Joana Chicau [PT/NL] is a media designer, creative coder, researcher – with a background in classical and contemporary dance. She runs a transdisciplinary research project which interweaves media design and web environments with performance and choreographic practices. Chicau has been researching the intersection of the body with the constructed, designed, programmed environment, aiming at widening the ways in which digital sciences is presented and made accessible to the public. She has been actively participating and organizing events with performances involving multi-location collaborative creative coding/algorithmic improvisation, open discussions on gender equality and activism.


Suzanne Stein is a Foresight Analyst, Mentor, and Educator. Currently, appointed Lab Director of DMRII’s Super Ordinary, which focusses on new technologies and research methods. She is a member of OCAD U’s Digital Futures Office and the Strategic Foresight & Innovation graduate program. Stein has been an adjunct Faculty at AHO (Norway), the CFC (Canada), and the Unfinished Business School (virtual).  Previously acting as Deputy Director and Principal Research Fellow in Technology Futures at SMARTlab (United Kingdom) and part of Nokia Corporate Strategy’s Insight & Foresight group. Earlier work included Sapient Corporation, as Discipline Lead for the Experience Modeling (XMod) group in London, and Director of the User Experience Group.


Melissa F. Clarke is a Brooklyn based interdisciplinary artist whose work employs data and generative self-programmed compositional environments. Melissa is an educator, curator, and an artist working at the intersections of research, data, science, and design. She extrapolates research into multimedia installations, generative video and sound sculptures, performances, and printed images. Melissa was a recent artist in residence with Clock Tower at Pioneer Works, Visible Future Labs at the School for Visual Art and the Simon’s Center for Geometry and Physics. Her work has been featured by the Art F City, Creators Project, L Magazine, Art in America, and with publications such as the Village Voice, Kickstarter, Art 21, Blouin Art Info, Impose Magazine, and Columbia University’s State of the Planet. Clarke is a graduate of NYU’s ITP program with a Tisch Fellowship. She is currently a lecturing professor at SUNY Stony Brook teaching interactive installation art, introduction to computational art, animation and web art.

Margaret Anne Schedel is a composer and cellist specializing in the creation and performance of ferociously interactive media whose works have been performed throughout the US and abroad. As an Associate Professor of Music at Stony Brook University, she serves as Co-Director of Computer Music and ran SUNY’s first Coursera Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), an introduction to computational arts. Schedel holds a certificate in Deep Listening and is a joint author of Cambridge Press’s Electronic Music. She recently edited an issue of Organised Sound on using the vocabulary of electroacoustic music to describe pre-electric sounds and she will shortly release a solo CD on Parma Records. Her work has been supported by the Presser Foundation, Centro Mexicano para la Música y les Artes Sonoras, and Meet the Composer. She has been commissioned by the Princeton Laptop Orchestra the percussion ensemble Ictus, the reACT duo and the Unheard-of//Ensemble. Her research focuses on gesture in music, the sustainability of technology in art, and sonification/gamification of data. She sits on the board on nCoda and NYCEMF is a regional editor for Organised Sound and an editor for Cogent Arts and Humanities. In her spare time, she curates exhibitions focusing on the intersection of art, science, new media, and sound and runs, a platform celebrating art with computational underpinnings.