All posts by nanotopian

Tosca Hidalgo y Terán is a part of Nanotopia. She is a Toronto based multidisciplinary artist. Born in San Francisco, California, Tosca relocated to Canada in 2001. Working with metals, computer coding, and animation since the mid-eighties, Tosca was introduced to glass as an artistic medium in 2004. Through developing bodies of work incorporating metal, glass, and electronics, Tosca has been awarded scholarships at The Corning Museum of Glass, Pilchuck Glass School and The Penland School of Crafts. Her work has been featured at SOFA New York, Culture Canada, Metalsmith Magazine, The Toronto Design Exchange, and the Memphis Metal Museum. Most recently, Tosca has been awarded residencies at Gullkistan Centre for Creativity, Nes artist residency Iceland, The Association of Icelandic Visual Artists and the Ayatana SciArt Research Program in Ottawa. Tosca founded nanopod: Hybrid Studio maker space in 2005. Continually exploring new materials and tools, Tosca started collaborating artistically with Algae, Physarum polycephalum, and Mycelium in 2016, translating biodata from non-human organisms into music. Mycelium Network Podcast, iTunes: https://goo.gl/95PdBe Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/nanotopia/sets/midnight-mushroom-music http://www.toscateran.com

March madness, indeed!

Special offsite workshops in Bio-Sonification at York’s Maker Fair,  University of Toronto and InterAccess (sign up for the InterAccess workshop fast– space has almost filled!)

My 3-month residency begins March 15th at MOCA Toronto. This residency enables my work with mycelium of various strains, explorations with bio-plastic, 3D printing and augmented reality to move forward. More concerning this residency can be found on my personal website, and a dedicated website will be online soon. This website; Alien Agencies Collective will document all of the Collective’s work during our time with MOCA and the OSC as well as future projects.

April workshops! Look for other workshop offerings under our Metal, Bio-Art, Glass menu headings!


Insect Spreading workshop

 Learn how to spread moths/butterflies and beetles. Thursday evening, April 25th. Class  starts at 7pm In this class, students will learn about basic insect preparation. We will discuss harvesting and drying specimen, rehydrating dried specimen, and in class we will practice handling techniques, spreading, mounting, the nuances of posing, display, and maintenance. An assortment of ethically sourced insects; Beetles, moths and butterflies, in various sizes, shapes, and colours will be provided. Students will learn how to put together and maintain their own rehydration chamber, things to check for during all stages of the process to ensure a clean and successful end product, and tips for gentle handling. We will also cover how to select museum quality materials for displays. Students receive 1 Riker mount (or similar) for their specimen, 1 set of insect pins & 2 insects. As always, all specimen are ethically sourced. We will be reviewing the origins of the insects used in class, how students can ethically and legally source specimen, and suggested, reputable suppliers. Students go home with their own prepared insects, one Riker mount (or similar) display, the pinning/spreading board made during class, resource list as well as 1 set of insect pins and the knowledge to create their own pieces in the future. It is recommended students bring a small bag or box or display case to transport their pieces.

CV Sunday, Sculpting with Mycelium, Insect spreading workshop and more!

Please note: some of these workshops take place at co:Lab studio/gallery. 

CV Sunday at co:Lab

MoogFest 2018 Engineer workshop

Share a patch/Learn a patch

Nanotopia plan to have some of the following out on a table: Moog Subharmonicon, DFAM, juiced up Minitaur and some Moms hanging out with Make Noise, Erica Synths, Teenage engineering Pocket Operators, Nanotopian Midi Bio-Sonification modules and who knows!?

Bring your gear!
2pm – 6pm
BYOAmp


Insect Spreading workshop

Back & Front view
Back & Front view

 

Learn how to spread moths/butterflies and beetles. Thursday evening, February 28. Class  starts at 7pm

In this class, students will learn about basic insect preparation. We will discuss harvesting and drying specimen, rehydrating dried specimen, and in class we will practice handling techniques, spreading, mounting, the nuances of posing, display, and maintenance. An assortment of ethically sourced insects; Beetles, moths and butterflies, in various sizes, shapes, and colours will be provided. Students will learn how to put together and maintain their own rehydration chamber, things to check for during all stages of the process to ensure a clean and successful end product, and tips for gentle handling. We will also cover how to select museum quality materials for displays. Students receive 1 Riker mount (or similar) for their specimen, 1 set of insect pins & 2 insects.

As always, all specimen are ethically sourced. We will be reviewing the origins of the insects used in class, how students can ethically and legally source specimen, and suggested, reputable suppliers.

Students go home with their own prepared insects, one Riker mount (or similar) display, the pinning/spreading board made during class, resource list as well as 1 set of insect pins and the knowledge to create their own pieces in the future. It is recommended students bring a small bag or box or display case to transport their pieces.


Sculpting with Mycelium workshop.

Sculpting with Mycelium: working with environmentally friendly, renewable materials
Tuesday evening, starting March 5th, 7pm-9pm.

Sculpting with Mycelium workshop.

Sculpting with Mycelium: working with environmentally friendly, renewable materials
TBA. 

 

Bio-materials are grown over several days, participants are welcome to meet up every 3rd to 5th evening after the first start-up date to check on their Mycelium’s growth*! $60/pp includes:
1 round planter growth form
1 bag of Hemp substrate inoculated with Mycelium
Sculpting mix
Nitrile gloves
Particulate masks
Mycelium food
Instructions
This workshop includes everything you need to grow a round planter, as well as hand-sculpt a small form plus, a full bag of substrate inoculated with mycelium! Suggestions on how to grow other forms or grow onto various armatures (3D printed, hand knit/crocheted) is discussed.

Evening 1: we start with an introduction and demonstrate how the growth materials work, as well as discuss Mycelium; what it is, its benefits to us and our environment. Then everyone feeds their Mycelium and leaves them to rest in a safe, cosy dark place or participants are welcome to bring their substrate home!  Everyone is invited to work with a pre-myceliated bag of the substrate on the first evening, packing a form that will grow over several days that they can pick up from the studio at a later date to desiccate at home. Desiccation is discussed.
Evening 2* (optional)WOW look how you’ve grown! Your Mycelium has grown and consumed its substrate. Now we gently, yet firmly work with our Mycelium through sculpting with special media and/or using forms to grow our planters!
After forming/sculpting the Mycelium is again placed into a dark, cosy space where it can happily grow to fill or cover our structures!
Evening 3* (optional)Forms are ready for desiccation and use! Everyone unpacks their forms, weighs them and then we bake them until they weigh approximately 35% less then pre-desiccated weight. Participants also have the option to dry their forms at home. Once dried students can plant lovely succulents, cactus, or use their forms as sculptures or packing materials and marvel over nature!

Mycelium= the mass of interwoven filamentous hyphae that forms especially the vegetative portion of the thallus of a fungus and is often submerged in another body (as of soil or organic matter or the tissues of a host) aka mushroom roots

* participants have the option of brining their GIY/substrate materials home after feeding them the first evening, along with instructions (emailed PDF) to continue exploring sculpting and growing mycelium and mushrooms at home. Alternatively, participants can schedule 2 evenings 3-5 days apart to return and check on the mycelium’s growth progress, sculpt with their material and learn about desiccation.

Artist-instructor Tosca Teran works with Mycelium collaboratively –
creating the Midnight Mushroom Music Podcast.
This year (2019) Tosca and Andrei (together forming Nanotopia) are offering workshops making Bio-Sonification Modules out of their shared studio space, Interaccess.org, UofT and abroad.
Personal: www.toscateran.com
Tosca was recently interviewed by, Ecovative Designs. Check out the
interview here, https://ecovativedesign.com/blog/178
Tosca was one of 4 artists recommended and awarded a 3-month residency at the Museum of Contemporary Art in the Ontario Science Centre studio. The residency starts March 15th, 2019. Check out her website for information concerning this amazing collaboration and forming of The Alien Agencies Collective.


Nanotopian Midi Bio-Sonification Module building workshop!

Saturday and Sunday, Feb 23/24 1-4pm $95/pp includes full kit, instructions, solderless bread-boarding intro.        

Collaborate sonically with the non-human organisms around you. In this workshop, you will learn how to build a Nanotopian MIDI Bio-sonification Module. Listen to the sounds of the organisms around you (such as your plants!), how it responds to your presence, and see how it really feels!

Participants receive step by step guidance to build their own MIDI Bio-Sonification Module and how the device works. Once kits are built participants are shown how to change Midi scales/channels, LED brightness and more with Arduino. We will discuss MIDI and how it works. Once the modules are completed, participants place electrodes onto plants, fungi, themselves or each other and listen to their Bio-data through Ableton Live, Animoog, Model 15 or similar digital music apps and analogue synths) creating a MIDI Bio-Sonification Symphony!

Please note: This is not a Soldering 101 course. It is very important participants know how to solder. Recommended class if you do not know how: https://interaccess.org/workshop/2018/dec/making-art-electronics 

Please purchase one of our fully built modules in the instance you do not know how to solder. They can be found here.

March/April> Special Afternoon workshops

March/April experiment: Running afternoon courses.  3 partipant minumun for workshops to run, however, class sizes are small in order to offer focussed attention. Please email the studio if you have any questions concerning these classes.

Metal working mash-up:

Etching copper/bronze & fabrication: Hand-drawn and/or digital images. Hand-sawn, formed, soldered copper and sterling silver.
Hydraulic press: creating simple dies towards building hollow-forms (salt & pepper shakers?, Lockets, unusual shadow-box pendants?
Electro-formed organic/non-organics: Grow copper over wax, wood, stone & more!
Married Metals: Creating patterns incorporating copper, brass and sterling silver that have the appearance of being one.
Dates: Monday & Wednesday, March 4th to March 27th, 1pm to 4pm $300/pp Includes: copper/bronze, etchants, etching expendables, die making materials, plating solutions and ingredients towards mixing your own conductive paints.  This course has filled. 

Ring Band workshop & Metal + Glass course!

Ring Band Workshop: Saturday afternoon, February 2nd, 1pm-4pm $88/pp includes all materials to construct a beautiful, wide band sterling silver ring! Learn how to properly measure your finger(s), work with a Jeweller’s saw and blades, add textures with hammers, stamping tools and rolling mill. Form, solder and finish! Fun for parties! 🙂



Learn how to form, fabricate, solder, set-stones in our 4 wk Metal + Glass course, etch, cast and more!

Almar’s cuttlebone cast from a 4/wk course in Iceland

Metal + Glass 4-week course Starts up March 4th and runs – 8 evenings. Monday & Wednesday 6:30-9:30pm  $285/pp  

Or make a deposit towards the course and/or *Lab fee (*Optional) below.

evening #1: First evening: working with copper: safety, drilling, sawing. Adding textures.

evening #2: Making a ring band out of silver (stamp, hammer finish, roller print, etc.)

evening #3: Working with wax create a small piece w/the lost wax technique- to be cast in Sterling silver or Bronze.

evening #4: Finishing wax projects, which are cast off-site. Waxes for metal casting are weighed and calculated (*sterling runs $2.50/grm. Lab fee includes 20grams of sterling silver casting grain). Lo-tech casting with Cuttlefish bone.

evening #5: Enameling copper projects, forming, how to make your own basic findings.

evening #6: Clean-up lost wax castings, discuss bezel-set stone designs/projects.

evening #7: Bezel settings cabochon stones or fossils or crystals, or an enamelled glass piece.

evening #8: Finish up projects  No experience necessary!

Copper, wax, glass, and some sterling silver are supplied*.  A list of local suppliers is included.   Questions concerning this course? Please see our FAQ’s

What’s included:
Approx 4×5” piece of copper sheet, 2’ copper wire, sterling silver for 1 ring band, fine silver bezel wire to set 1 cabochon cut stone. Glass enamel powder is included, silver solder to complete class projects, wax, 10 grams of sterling silver for casting in cuttlebone, 1 doz saw blades, 1- 1mm drill bit.  Students are encouraged to supply their own cabochon cut stones, crystals, rocks, etc.

Additional materials not included: cabochon cut stone(s), sterling silver sheet/plate for setting stones on/constructing other pieces.

The lab fee offers tools and materials for students to continue projects at home and start setting up their own studio.
Lab fee $150.00 (optional) what it includes:
adjustable jeweler’s bench pin, jeweler’s saw frame, 1 gross (144) jeweler’s saw blade assortment, 10 grams of sterling silver casting grain, 2″x2″ sterling silver plate.
Lab fee 1

 

 

 

La Planète Sauvage: Beyond Anthropocene. Harmonize Chthulucene. De-emphasizing human exceptionalism in favor of multispecism.

Come say Hello this Thursday evening! 😀

Exhibition:
La Planete Sauvage
co:Lab 906 Queen West @Crawford 
January 18-27th 
Opening Reception, Thursday January 17th 7pm-10pm
During the opening reception a special Introductory demonstration of Sculpting w/Mycelium & Bio-Sonification collaborating with non-human is taking place $25/pp advance register required if interested in having your Bio-data recorded and receiving a mycelium grown bowl. https://nanopod.tv/bio-sci-art-workshops/

Come celebrate with us! And meet the Artists/Makers:

Trinley Dorje: Microcosm of The Earth Series.
Microcosms of the Earth is a bioart related series which displays cardiomyocytes (cardiac muscle cells) in a colourful and topographical nature. Each artwork is a unique depiction of Earth. The cardiomyocytes are distorted and blurred to give a surreal appearance to the artwork which represents the ever-shifting and changing tectonic plates and the effects climate change has on the environment.

Maggy Middleton: The Vexed Muddler.
By day a molecular biologist who studies bacterial evolution in the context of pathogenesis. By night they create digital and sculptural art and jewellery exploring microbiology, anatomy, physics, and other scientific realms. As the Vexed Muddler, their primary interest is in creating conversation pieces that surprise and delight, provoking curiosity and exploration. 

Riko Okuna: Riot Works.
Simple design and carefully handcrafted pieces with beautiful weirdness. Metal + Wood.

Tosca Teran: Mycelial experimentations & bio-sonification.
Mycelium forms sculpted by hand and using 3D printed bio-filament.
Exploring acoustics, wearable insulating factors, and bio-remediation that incorporates bio-sonification.

Nanotopian Bio-Sonification Modules

Interested in purchasing a Module kit for some home studio DIY? We are offering kits through the following link, Nanotopian.

Or sign up for one of our upcoming workshops at InterAccess, or co:Lab! 

February 23/24 1pm-4pm                 Build your own Nanotopian MIDI Bio-Sonification Module and start listening to the biology around you!

Seacliff life along Húnaflói Bay, Iceland.

Collaborate sonically with the non-human organisms around you. Next time you go on a picnic bring along your Bio-sonification Module & listen to the sounds of the forest, how it responds to your presence then, place the electrodes onto your friends or hook up your houseplant and see how it really feels!
Students receive step by step guidance putting together their own Bio-Sonification Module kit and help in understanding how the device works.
Last half of the workshop participants place electrodes onto plants, fungi, themselves or each other and listen to their Bio-data through Ableton Live, Animoog, Model 15 (or similar digital music apps and analog synths) creating a Bio-Sonification Symphony!

Various plants, soil, and Mycelium will be available during the workshop for participants to place their electrodes onto along with iConnectivity Midi to USB/Lightning connectors for participants to try out different instruments/software; Ableton, Animoog on iPad, Model 15 (on iPhone & iPad), Moog Mother32s, Make Noise NoCoast, etc. Other possibilities are shown and discussed, for instance, Ableton Max/MSP Midi video disruption!

Each participant receives their very own Bio-Sonification Module kit, a Module container file that they can 3D print offsite and a lo-tech version we will put together during the workshop, a set of electrodes and electrode pads or electrode clips (participants can choose during the workshop). The Bio-Sonification Modules were created by Tosca Teran with the assistance of Manuel Domke and Sam Cusumano!

Prerequisite: Basic knowledge of soldering is very important. Here is a link to the Mighty Ohm’s, fullsoldercomic_en Some Ableton Live knowledge is helpful, but not necessary!

“Bio-sonification,” basically means using technology to turn the bio-rhythms of natural objects into sound.


Biodata Sonification is a process to translate complex real-time sensor data into musical notes and controls, exploring the auditory sensory modality to provide insights into invisible phenomenon.

Happy New Year! 2019: Bio-sonification, Pate de Verre, Metal + Glass & more!

2019 Beginning workshops and courses! I believe experiences make the best gifts plus, learning new skills, and working with your hands!

Pate de Verre workshops – Participants learn how to fill a pre-made mould of a small bowl with glass paint, glass powder and fine glass -frit-, the moulds are then fired and participants return to the studio to divest and finish their bowls.  $150/pp Materials included, no experience necessary!  Weekend workshop: January 5th & 6th, Sat: 12-3pm/Sun: 1pm-4pm
 

Students learn the basics of pâte de verre from start to finish while making a thin-walled, kiln formed bowl. Students have access to a broad palette of coloured frit (crushed glass) and samples to help predict and understand fired qualities. Demonstrations include various techniques of working with glass powders against the mold, working with color reactions, as well as how to back-fill a packed mold to support the walls of the piece during firing.   


Biodata Sonification is a process to translate complex real-time sensor data into musical notes and controls, exploring the auditory sensory modality to provide insights into invisible phenomenon.

Seacliff life along Húnaflói Bay, Iceland.

March 23/30, 1pm-4pm Build your own Nanotopian MIDI Bio-Sonification Module and start listening to the biology around you!  Register through InterAccess 

Collaborate sonically with the non-human organisms around you. Next time you go on a picnic bring along your Bio-sonification Module & listen to the sounds of the forest, how it responds to your presence then, place the electrodes onto your friends or hook up your houseplant and see how it really feels!
Students receive step by step guidance putting together their own Bio-Sonification Module kit and help in understanding how the device works. Once kits are built participants are shown how to change Midi scales/channels, LED brightness and more with Arduino. We will discuss MIDI and how it works.
Last half of the workshop participants place electrodes onto plants, fungi, themselves or each other and listen to their Bio-data through Ableton Live, Animoog, Model 15 (or similar digital music apps and analog synths) creating a Bio-Sonification Symphony!


Almar’s cuttlebone cast from an 4/wk course in Iceland

Metal + Glass 4-week course Starts up March 4th and runs – 8 evenings. Monday & Wednesday 6:30-9:30pm  $285/pp  

evening #1: First evening: working with copper: safety, drilling, sawing. Adding textures.

evening #2: Making a ring band out of silver (stamp, hammer finish, roller print, etc.)

evening #3: Working with wax create a small piece w/the lost wax technique- to be cast in Sterling silver.

evening #4: Finishing wax projects, invest models for casting in metal. Waxes for metal casting are weighed and calculated (*sterling runs $2.50/grm. Lab fee includes 20grams of sterling silver casting grain). Lo-tech casting with Cuttlefish bone.

evening #5: Cast moulds in sterling silver!

evening #6: Enameling copper projects, forming, how to make your own basic findings.

evening #7: Bezel settings cabochon stones or fossils or crystals, or an enamelled glass piece.

evening #8: Finish up projects  No experience necessary!

Copper, wax, glass, and some sterling silver are supplied*.  A list of local suppliers is included.   Questions concerning this course? Please see our FAQ’s

What’s included:
Approx 4×5” piece of copper sheet, 2’ copper wire, sterling silver for 1 ring band, fine silver bezel wire to set 1 cabochon cut stone. Glass is included for casting/flame-working (whatever method is covered), silver solder to complete class projects, wax, 10 grams of sterling silver for casting (either cuttlefish or lost wax), powdered vitreous enamel, 1 doz saw blades, 1 1mm drill bit, 1 half face particulate respirator, nitrile gloves, refractory materials for casting moulds.  Students are encouraged to supply their own cabochon cut stones, crystals, rocks, etc.

Additional materials not included: cabochon cut stone(s), extra sterling silver grain for lost wax castings, sterling silver sheet/plate for setting stones on/constructing other pieces.  Sterling silver casting grain may be purchased at $2.50gram.

The lab fees offer tools and materials for students to continue projects at home and start setting up their own studio.
Lab fee $150.00 (optional) what it includes:
adjustable jeweller’s bench pin, jeweller’s saw frame, 1 gross (144) jeweller’s saw blade assortment, 20 grams of sterling silver casting grain, 2″x2″ sterling silver plate.
Lab fee 1