Alison Reiko Loader
Filmmaker, 3D Animator, Concordia University

George Legrady Paula Levine Munro Ferguson Willy Le Maitre Steve Dietz Perry Hoberman JoAnn Kuchera-Morin Marten Berkman Sid Fels Ruben Moller Leila Sujir Maria Lantin Jaanis Garancs Henry Daniel Catherine Richards Glen Lowry Henry Tsang Alison Reiko Loader
Possible Movements: On Site - Temporality, Memory and Spirit of Place

Many architectural heritage preservation projects using new media prioritize architectural fidelity, but often result in stagnant representations of a frozen moment in time. The Possible Movements project proposes innovative approaches to the re-presentation of heritage sites by highlighting ineffable elements such as temporality. One of our working prototypes is the historic Grey Nuns Motherhouse in Montreal, soon to be transformed into a Concordia University campus. In the past two years, we have gathered an abundance of archival materials and have filmed the architecture and nuns extensively, embedding these within a scaled virtual reconstruction of the Grey Nuns Chapel, the spiritual centre of the Motherhouse community. We created this 3D model of the chapel using a variety of techniques, including importing architectural blueprints directly into 3D software, and investigated the use of photogrammetry and stereoscopy, technologies as old as the Motherhouse itself. The production of stereoscopy is especially relevant to our project. Historically, it served as a tool to present exotic views not easily seen. Today, revitalized by digital culture, stereoscopic production has been significantly simplified by the use of computer-generated models.

The title "Possible Movements" refers to the tension between our inability to experience the history of a space via the senses of our predecessors and our desire to re-imagine pathways of memory to honour dissolving traditions. We regard our virtual chapel as a space to stage lived histories within architecture and show the multiple ways these histories can be represented, both past and present. The illusion of objectivity found in immersive photorealism is not our primary goal. Rather, we have 'animated' the computer-generated space by multiple strategies including the layering of archival materials, time-lapses and innovative camera movements. The resulting virtual flight through space and time explores the site's multiple cultural meanings and the spirit of its inhabitants.

Alison Reiko Loader will show excerpts of the Possible Movements project initiated and led by Professor Marielle Nitoslawska, filmmaker and Chair of the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema at Concordia University. She will also present Folding, a short stereoscopic animation about origami developed with the National Film Board of Canada.


A filmmaker and specialist in 3d animation, Alison Reiko Loader has taught in the Departments of Animation, Design and Computation Arts at Concordia University in Montreal since 2001. She recently completed a Graduate Certificate in Digital Technologies and is currently working on a Masters degree in Media Studies. Her award-winning animated short films produced independently and by the National Film Board of Canada have been screened worldwide. She has also worked in the feature film, television and game industries in Canada and Japan. Her current research interests include stereoscopy, anamorphosis and animated installations.

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