Landscape of Hate

Landscape of Hate is an improvised multimedia project with the objective of promoting and favouring the public voice in framing pluralistic dialogues about how we negotiate various forms of hate in our society.

In this video, Vivek Venkatesh and Owen Chapman explain Landscape of Hate.

Events typically consist of a combination of panel discussions, debates, art expositions and performances.  Landscape of Hate performances include a combination of original compositions of electronic music, audio samples, social media feeds, soundscapes and video projections. The lyrical materials are derived from data collected from the Internet, research interviews and other public sources. Each performance is unique. Landscape of Hate has been created as part of the Grimposium festival and conference series and the SOMEONE  initiative. The project is funded by grants to Vivek Venkatesh’s multi-disciplinary research and practitioner team.

Vivek Venkatesh and Owen Chapman  are the creators and curators of Landscape of Hate. Vivek is responsible for the live vocals and improvised noise electronics. Vivek and Owen also source the social media and pre-recorded public voices and nature-based soundscapes using the custom-made Plural mobile application which was designed by Vivek, Owen and Kathryn Urbaniak.

Vivek Venkatesh, Owen Chapman, Jason Wallin, Danji Buck-Moore (aka anabasine) and Leticia Trandafir (aka softcoresoft), and Annabelle Brault compose original music, deejay and improvise soundscape materials during Landscape of Hate performances.

David Hall creates the logos, branding and the visual representations to accompany the music of Landscape of Hate. David, Martin Lalonde and Jessie Beier improvise visuals based on the content of the public materials being used in each Landscape of Hate performance.

Credit: Marcus Skrede

The concept of the logo itself is rooted in a hashtag – the idea that thoughts and words must be ‘coded’ properly and the tie-in with social media and its impact and role as a delivery system for hate speech.

There is also the idea present of a sideways ‘H’ (for hate) and a vertical bridge going across this H/hate…a landscape that transcends and also runs in tandem/intersects hate.

Lastly, there are thorns and barbed edges that represent that hate and ‘sting’ of prejudice and thoughts – this is a visual representation of hateful speech and rhetoric…and that with freedom of speech comes the ethical dilemma of defending free speech that one finds vile.

Events

Landscape of Hate & Pig Destroyer, July 2019

Grimposium collaborated with their longstanding partners at Heavy Montreal to bring grindcore legends Pig Destroyer back to Montreal for a unique and intimate evening at Théâtre Corona on July 26, 2019. Local electronic improvisation outfit Landscape of Hate opened the show.

Here is a video of the performance.

Performing in Landscape of Hate were Vivek Venkatesh, anabasine, Jason Wallin, and Annabelle Brault. Visuals by David Hall. Music composed by Vivek Venkatesh, Owen Chapman, and anabasine.

The event featured creative workshops with members of Pig Destroyer and Landscape of Hate, as well as a panel discussion on racial and social profiling featuring local activists, youth and community leaders. 

Here is a video from the workshop on 26 July.

Here is a video of the panel.

Panelists
– JR Hayes, Pig Destroyer lyricist and singer
– Elsa F. Mondésir Villefort, youth educator and member of the Youth Advisory Group of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO
– Will Prosper, documentary filmmaker, civil rights activist, former RCMP officer
– Vivek Venkatesh, Director of Project SOMEONE and Co-Founder of Landscape of Hate

Moderator
Annabelle Brault, music therapist and Landscape of Hate collaborator

Landscape of Hate AoIR, October 2018

Landscape of Hate performed on 12 October, 2018 at O Patro Vys as part of the AoIR 2018 (Association of Internet Researchers)  conference.  The performers involved were David Hall, Martin Lalonde, Jessie Beier, Leticia Trandafir, Danji Buck-Moore, Owen Chapman, Jason Wallin, and Vivek Venkatesh.

Landscape of Hate CUISI, June 2018

Landscape of Hate  performed in Montreal at COOP Katacombes on June 22, 2018 as part of the Concordia University Interdisciplinary Summer Institute.

Concordia University Interdisciplinary Summer Institute (CUISI) offered an intense week-long (3-credit) interdisciplinary course/seminar for advanced Masters and PhD students on topics that are highly influential in today’s societies.

Credit: Jessie Beier

Instructional objectives:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the multifaceted nature of hate, hate speech and pluralistic dialogues through discussions and debates with interdisciplinary experts
  • Examine linguistic structures pertaining to hate speech in online fora by using multi-method analytical tools
  • Develop guidelines (policy, curricular, or otherwise) for the design of programs (online or offline) that promote inclusivity and pluralism
  • Co-create counter-narratives to hateful ideologies by using text, audio and visual materials
  • Reflect critically on how to encourage pluralism within “echo chambers”

The 2018 Institute included the following activities:

  • Lectures, debates and discussions with experts from the fields of religion, media studies, art, philosophy, law, criminology, sociology, education, research-creation, consumer culture, psychology, data analytics and more!
  • Workshops with methodology experts in linguistic analysis and natural language processing
  • Creative manipulation of multimedia to build visual materials and soundscapes which will ultimately be used in an Institute-closing Landscape of Hate performance

Credit: Jessie Beier

Credit: Jessie Beier

Landscape of Hate in Bergen, Norway, May 2018

Landscape of Hate was invited to perform in Bergen on May 26, 2018 as part of Festspillene i Bergen.  On May 24 and 25, members of Landscape of Hate and experts in media literacy and art education  conducted workshops with members of Høgskolen in Vestlandet to create multimedia material, visual art and soundscapes which were then used in the performance on May 26.

The evening began with a discussion led by Landscape of Hate creator Vivek Venkatesh. The panel was composed of the Norwegian-Danish-Eritrean cartoonist Josef Yohannes, the Danish human rights and internet activist Emma Holten and Canadian ambassador to Norway, Artur Wilczynski. This video of the panel was produced by Festspillene i Bergen.

This video of the performance was also produced by Festspillene i Bergen.

Finally, there was also be an art exhibition featuring cartoons from Josef Yohannes and his The Urban Legend – the world’s first African superhero in comic book form – and the Canadian project Learning to Hate, created by Jason Wallin and Jessie Beier.

#paysagedelahaine in Québec, September 2017

Grimposium, SOMEONE and the Center for the Prevention of Radicalization Leading to Violence presented #paysagedelahaine in Quebec on September 15, 2017.

This event was held in Quebec City at the Multi Room and was composed of an improvised multimedia evening with composers, musicians, poets, DJs, filmmakers and researcher-practitioners.

The evening began with a panel with the following speakers: David Morin, Webster, Maxime Fiset and Léa Clermont-Dion. This was followed by music and DJ performances by Dj anabasine, softcoresoft electro-multimedia concert, Owen Chapman, David Hall, and Vivek Venkatesh.  The evening ended with a performance by Webster.

#paysagedelahaine #landscapeofhate (May 2017)

Concordia University “I want to turn hate on its head” by Jesse Coady, April 24, 2017

Grimposium presented #paysagedelahaine / #landscapeofhate on May 9, 2017 at Coop Katacombes – in collaboration with the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

The public were invited to contribute audio, video and text materials to #paysagedelahaine / #landscapeofhate which was held on May 9, 2017 using the prompts of:

Why do we hate?
What do we hate?
I hate because …

Opening words were given by Dominique Bérubé (CRSH) and Justin Powlowski (Concordia). This was followed by a panel discussion by Cécile Rousseau, David Morin, Nicole Fournier-Sylvester and Vivek Venkatesh. Next was a concert opened by Phil Paullins (Filip Ivanovic et Paul Williams), music videos by Anal Trump with an introduction by filmmaker David Hall. Finally, Landscape of Hate performed with  Leticia Trandafir (softcoresoft), Owen Chapman et Vivek Venkatesh.

Albums

Soundtrack to Blekkmetal

Landscape of Hate’s debut album is the soundtrack to Blekkmetal, an independent Canadian-Norwegian concert documentary about the one-off music, film, tattoo and art festival held in Bergen, Norway in November 2015.

Released September 13, 2019, in collaboration with Grimposium, Project SOMEONE et Dystopia Productions, and co-produced by Vivek Venkatesh, Owen Chapman and Danji Buck-Moore, this experimental musical and multimedia collective based in Montréal, Canada, recorded the soundtrack over a four-day period this past June.

For more information on Landscape of Hate, including videos and photos of previous performances, please visit their website. You can also listen to the album on BandcampSpotifyTidal or Apple Music.

Team

Vivek Venkatesh PhD

Vivek Venkatesh is UNESCO co-Chair in Prevention of Radicalisation and Violent Extremism, and Associate Professor of Inclusive Practices in Visual Arts in the Department of Art Education at the Faculty of Fine Arts. He is an interdisciplinary and applied learning scientist who investigates the psychological, cultural and cognitive factors impacting the design, development and inclusive adoption of digital media in educational and social contexts.

Owen Chapman PhD

Owen Chapman is a composer, DJ and researcher. His work addresses the place of sound in everyday life. He is an Associate Professor in Sound Production and Scholarship in the department of Communication Studies at Concordia University.  His audio work involves app design, live performance and electronic composition and has been featured internationally in video soundtracks, media workshops, site-specific installations as well as solo and group performances.

Jason Wallin PhD

Jason Wallin is Professor of Media and Youth Culture Studies in the Department of Secondary Education at the University of Alberta.

Leticia Trandafir

Leticia Trandafir—who performs as softcoresoft—is a Montreal-based DJ, music producer, radio host and cultural organizer. Her sonic aesthetic fuses acid, hypnotic techno, rave musics and experimental. She is also the music director at Never Apart, a Montreal-based non-profit cultural center.

Danji Buck-Moore

Danji Buck-Moore aka anabasine is a musician, DJ, engineer and organizer based in Montreal. He is a founding member of the community arts space La Plante and the rave collective Lagom. Along with German artists Henning Fehr and Philip Rühr he produced Polyrhythm Technoir, an exploratory film trilogy about techno worlds (2016). He is currently pursuing an MA in Communications at McGill University researching the relationships between underground music scenes, city regulatory structures, and grassroots politics.

Annabelle Brault

Annabelle Brault, MA, MTA is a resource-oriented music therapist, musician, researcher and educator. A full-time music therapy lecturer at Concordia University, she is interested in the use of music technology as a creative medium to instill social change.

Martin Lalonde PhD

Martin Lalonde is a professor in Art Education at the School of Visual and Media Arts in Université du Québec à Montréal. His research focuses on the impact of mobile digital technologies on teaching and learning, on the intersection of arts education and social work with at-risk populations, and on informal creative practices in visual and media among young people.

Jessie Beier

Jessie Beier is a doctoral student at the University of Alberta specializing in art education and film studies.

David Hall  

David is an accomplished producer and filmmaker with over two decades of experience; he is also the director of the critically acclaimed concert documentary Blekkmetal.