Person

Brendan Cormier

Fan Videos For Cities

Fan videos for musicians have become a pretty major part of the online video-streaming world. With increasingly accessible prices for digital video equipment, and user-friendly editing software, expressing your love for your favourite indie band through mash-up edits of kittens dancing on pianos has never been easier. But what if you’re a really big fan…

Read more →

Prairie Home (Concert) Companion

Canada is a big place – and the nation has wrestled with the problem of small town isolation since its inception. The Canada Post itself was a major innovation in opening up rural communities to basic communication and consumer products previously only available in bigger cities. And several other initiatives have made access to essential…

Read more →

Celebrity City Tours 2: Glenn Gould’s Toronto

In the late 1970s the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation put together a series simply called ‘Cities’ where certain celebrity figures gave very personal introspective tours of their hometown to millions of Canadian television viewers. Actor Peter Ustinov showcased Leningrad, and stage director Jonathan Miller took us around London. Most memorable of the series however was not of…

Read more →
  • Big Brother Is Gauging You

    The Stimmungsgasometer/Fühlometer is a project by Richard Wilhelmer, Julius von Bismarck, and Benjamin Maus which debuted in Berlin in the Fall of 2008, involving a giant smiley face that glows at night and responds to the moods of Berliners on the street. A camera with a zoom lens attached to a laptop is covertly set…

    Read more →

    Celebrity City Tours 1: Reyner Banham Loves L.A.

    There’s something indelibly charming about the colour-faded city documentaries of the seventies and eighties. During this time, national broadcasting networks like the BBC and the CBC put out a slew of celebrity-hosted city tours as hour-long TV specials. Half-documentary/half city-marketing, there is something undeniably kitsch about the final products.  Yet, placing the celebrity as the…

    Read more →

    Staircase Urbanism

    Upon recently completing a competition entry for a new public space in Toronto, where my studio (Department of Unusual Certainties) proposed a giant staircase to nowhere, it was quickly pointed out to me by friends and colleagues, how it reminded them of other staircase projects that have gained popular attention in the last few years, the…

    Read more →
  • Nail Houses And The Stay-Down City

    In the most recent issue of Monu Magazine, Human Wu — who coincidentally might have the coolest name in history — writes about the phenomenon of nail houses in China. A nail house is a Chinese term that relates to any building where an owner stubbornly refuses to vacate his or her property in the…

    Read more →

    Party At The Moon Tower

    Austin, Texas is famous for breakfast tacos and Richard Linklater films. But it also home to a lesser known but equally great phenomenon known as the moonlight tower. Essentially an infrastructural anachronism, moonlight towers are 50-metre high lighting structures, designed to illuminate several blocks at a time. They were popular in North American cities at the…

    Read more →

    Sometimes Making Something Leads To Nothing

    With the Conflux Festival recently taking place in New York City, and the 7a*11d International Festival of Performance Art currently happening here in Toronto, I can’t help but note the incredible rise in popularity that location-based performance art and psychogeographic art interventions have enjoyed over the last decade. I’m also reminded of the first project…

    Read more →