Skawennati + Jason Edward Lewis | ACAD Premier Visiting Speaker Series

WHEN: Wednesday, February 13, 2019 at 2 p.m.

WHERE: Stanford Perrott Lecture Theatre, Alberta College of Art + Design

The ACAD Premier Visiting Speaker Series brings accomplished artists and designers to the institution to share their knowledge, experience, and practice.

This amazing opportunity for learning and mentorship creates international connections and provides a constant source of inspiration and professional development for students, faculty, and staff.

>>> RSVP for free tickets via Eventbrite

About the artists


Photo by Roger Lemoyne, 2015

Skawennati makes art that addresses history, the future, and change from an Indigenous perspective.  She is best known for her machinimas—movies made in virtual environments—but also produces still images and sculpture.

Her pioneering new media projects include the online gallery/chat-space and mixed-reality event, CyberPowWow (1997-2004); a paper doll/time-travel journal, Imagining Indians in the 25th Century (2001); and the machinimas TimeTraveller™(2007-2013), She Falls For Ages (2017) and The Peacemaker Returns (2017).  These have been presented in Venice, Germany, New Zealand, Hawaiʻi, Ireland, China and across North America in major exhibitions such as “Now? Now!” at the Biennale of the Americas; and “Looking Forward (L’Avenir)” at the Montreal Biennale. Her award-winning work is included in both public and private collections including the National Bank of Canada, Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians & Western Art, Global Affairs Canada and the Montreal Museum of Contemporary Art.

Born in Kahnawà:ke Mohawk Territory, Skawennati is Kanien'kehá:ka of the turtle clan. She holds a BFA from Concordia University in Montreal, where she resides. She is Co-Director, with Jason E. Lewis, of Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace (AbTeC), a research network of artists, academics and technologists investigating, creating and critiquing Indigenous virtual environments. She also co-directs their Skins workshops in Aboriginal Storytelling and Digital Media. This year AbTeC launched IIF, the Initiative for Indigenous Futures; Skawennati is its Partnership Coordinator

Jason Edward Lewis

Photo by Christie Vuong

Jason Edward Lewis is a digital media poet, artist, and software designer. He founded Obx Laboratory for Experimental Media, where he directs research/creation projects exploring computation as a creative and cultural material. Along with the artist Skawennati, he co-directs Aboriginal Territories in CyberspaceSkins Workshops on Aboriginal Stortyelling and Video Game Design and the Initiative for Indigenous Futures. Lewis is deeply committed to developing intriguing new forms of expression by working on conceptual, critical, creative and technical levels simultaneously.

He is the Concordia University Research Chair in Computational Media and the Indigenous Future Imaginary as well as Professor of Computation Arts at Concordia University, Montreal. Born and raised in northern California, Lewis is Cherokee, Hawaiian and Samoan.

Lewis' research interests include emergent media theory and history, and methodologies for conducting art-led technology research. Lewis' creative work has been featured at Ars Electronica, Mobilefest, Elektra, Urban Screens, ISEA, SIGGRAPH, and FILE, among other venues, and has been recognized with the inaugural Robert Coover Award for Best Work of Electronic Literature, a Prix Ars Electronica Honorable Mention, several imagineNATIVE Best New Media awards and six solo exhibitions. He's the author or co-author of chapters in collected editions covering mobile media, video game design, machinima and experimental pedagogy with Indigenous communities, as well as numerous journal articles and conference papers.

Lewis has worked in a range of industrial research settings, including Interval Research, US West's Advanced Technology Group, and the Institute for Research on Learning, and, at the turn of the century, he founded and ran a research studio for the venture capital firm Arts Alliance.

Lewis is a former Trudeau Fellow and a former Carnegie Fellow. He received a B.S. in Symbolic Systems (Cognitive Science) and B.A. in German Studies (Philosophy) from Stanford University, and an M.Phil. in Design from the Royal College of Art.