Marconi’s Ruins – exhibition and vernissage

Kim mentioned this a while ago.

“Marconi’s Ruins

Michael Longford & Robert Prenovault

February 07 – April 29, 2011

Vernissage: Thursday, February 10, 4:30 – 6:30 PM


Media Gallery, Department of Communication Studies

Concordia University, Loyola Campus, CJ Building 1.419

7141 Sherbrooke Street West, Montreal, Quebec Canada H4B 1R6

Gallery Hours:

Monday – Thursday, 9:00 AM – 4:45 PM

Friday, 9:00 AM – 12:45 PM

The small community of Marconi Towers, located a few kilometers south of Glace Bay in Cape Breton, is home to what remains of the first commercial transatlantic wireless station established by Guglielmo Marconi and the Marconi Company of Canada in 1907.  Linked to its sister station in Clifden, Ireland the Glace Bay Station was the first in what would eventually become a global communications network and a Canadian landmark in the early history of wireless telegraphy and radio.

The station remained in operation to the end of the Second World War, after which the property and buildings were sold to Russell Cunningham.  To this day, the site is privately owned by the Cunningham family who still occupy the Station Manager’s home and maintain what is left of the Condenser House, the only original Marconi station structures left in the world today.

Through a mix of photography, sculpture, and original artifacts, Longford and Prenovault explore what remains and has been lost of the industrial infrastructure – the condenser house, coal fired generators, towers supporting huge antennae arrays, spark transmitters and banks of vacuum tubes – required to send the pulse of energy translated into the dots and dashes that made up the language invented by Samuel Morse.  In its day, the powerful station could be seen and heard for miles around.  Today it is silent, hidden from view by the surrounding forest as the remaining structures fall in on themselves slowly deteriorating over time.

Artist Biographies

Michael Longford is the Associate Dean of Research in the Faculty of Fine Arts at York University. He is a Co-Director of the Mobile Media Lab (MML), which is made up of an interdisciplinary research team exploring wireless communications, rich media content development for mobile technologies, and locative media practices.  He is also a co-editor of the recent publication, The Wireless Spectrum: The Politics, Practices and Poetics of Mobile Media (2010), and a co-editor for the Visual Communication Journal published by Sage.

Robert Prenovault is an artist and designer whose practice is strongly informed by materials, processes, technologies and the role they play in the interface between human beings, the build environment, and the natural world.  Over a period of four decades he has exhibited, produced artist books, and done performance and installation work across Canada.  As a member of the Mobile Media Lab (MML), his creative practice is currently focused on the integration of traditional techniques with digital technologies.”


About M.E. Luka

Mary Elizabeth (“ME”) Luka is a Vanier Canada Graduate Scholar, HASTAC Scholar, and doctoral candidate (ABD) in the Joint Program in Communication at Concordia University, where she’s probing the meaning and potential of “creative citizenship,” including the work of artists and creative producers in daily life. Her scholarly research and teaching interests focus on production practices and creativity in cultural media production and more generally the creative and cultural industries, and the intriguing dynamics—and networks—generated at the intersection of the arts, broadcasting and digital production. Currently, Luka is teaching a graduate course in media, culture & society at Mount Saint Vincent University. In addition, ME is an award-winning producer and director for television and digital media as well as an experienced consultant in art, culture and media. She is an active leadership volunteer, including as Vice-Chair of Arts Nova Scotia, the new funding body for many artists and arts organizations in the province. For fun, she likes - umm - art, culture, and media, as well as travel, friends and family. @meluka01 |
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