Back Alley Artists 2016: Sammy Chien

Photo credit: Sheng Ho

Photo credit: Sheng Ho

Kodama 木霊 by Sammy Chien

Co-presented by Loco Moto Art Collective & Vancouver New Music in the event Oscillations as part of ISEA 2015, 21st International Symposium on Electronic Art, Vancouver, BC, Canada.

Kodama (木霊 forest sprit) utilizes lights, sounds and movement to unfold glimpses of what presumably lies within the semblance of our surroundings. From mundane reality to the spiritual world and divinity, this unfolding reminds us of the subtle doors to the virtual from the real, shifting our perception and engagement with the nature-world.



Sammy Chien

Dance Artists

Kaitey DeSante, Lily Hsu, Heather Lamoureux, Jess Marlow & Kelly McInnes


Laura Lee Coles

Technical Director 

Bobbi Kozinuk

Special Thanks

Tyler Hagan, Tom Prilesky, Pia Massie, Stefan Smulovitz


Tyler Hagan

Notes from the director:

"My interest in this piece is to utilize lights, sound and movement to unfold glimpses of sublimity that presumably lies within the semblance of our surroundings. From the mundane reality to the spiritual world and divinity, this unfoldment reminds us the subtle doors to the virtual from the real that hopefully will shift our perception and engagement with the nature-world at large.
The piece raises the awareness for ways to engage with our natural environment mediated by technology as well as the spiritual values within nature. Moreover, I would like to acknowledgment to the forest fire issues that happens more and more frequently due to climate change and human causes" (2015/08/15).


Sammy Chien (Chimerik) is a Taipei born, Vancouver-based interdisciplinary media artist. He has studied film at Simon Fraser University and developed an expertise in electroacoustic music and digital technology in performance environment. After learning real-time performance softwares from Troika Ranch (NYC/Berlin) he continues his deep interest in interdisciplinary collaborations and forges deep connections between image, sound, and movement. He has collaborated visually, aurally and conceptually in numerous multi-disciplinary projects range from film, theatre, dance, audiovisual performance to interactive installation which have exhibited across Canada, Western Europe, and Asia including Centre Pompidou(Paris), Museum of Contemporary Arts Taipei, National Centre for the Performing Arts(Beijing), Hellerau: European Centre for the Arts Dresden. His recent collaboration with Beijing Modern Dance Company includes working with artists such as Wong Kar Wai’s Cinematographer Christopher Doyle, the Father of Rock in China Cui Jian and having lunch with Ai Wei Wei. Sammy has recently directed larger scale outdoor interdisciplinary performance works that involves reviving the history of a city to raise consciousness for our natural environments in festivals such as ISEA and Taichung Light Festival. Recently, Sammy has been performing as a movement/dance artist and actor for non-profit and charity work that fundraiser for local environmental groups. His commercial success includes his recent appearance on BenQ’s new commercial “Let Big Ideas Shine”. He has also been involved in research, mentorship and public speaking for projects that focus on the integration between art, technology spirituality and social change as well as engaging with various community groups such as social activists, low-income residents, cultural, gender and ethnic minorities as well as LGBTQ youths. Sammy is the Co-Founder/Artistic Director of Chimerik collective.