Branching Songs is an art project that draws attention to trees and forests in the Westcoast region. The Branching Songs team is experimenting with sound and new media technologies combined with land-based practices to create compelling artwork and workshops with the aim to build awareness about the crucial role trees and forests play in ecosystem health.
The British Columbia (BC) coastal region has long been known for its unique biodiverse forests which include old-growth trees who play a crucial part in the province’s natural health and contribute to the health of the planet. However, deforestation from logging and development has diminished this habitat for wildlife and accelerated extreme environmental conditions, such as heat events, mudslides and flooding. Despite droubht from climate change, forests in regions such as the Sunshine Coast are being clearcut. Even urban forests are at risk, such as the trees that are currently being cleared for the Transmountain Pipeline expansion project despite knowledge about the need to eliminate fossil fuels and expand the urban forests.
It's known that wild and urban forests have positive effects on mental health and physical well-being and that people who experience connections with trees and forests are more likely to care for them. Therefore, it's of paramount importance to engage and mobilize people in the movement to protect and care for our trees and forests. The Branching Songs team creates sound art and live events, indoor performances with tree instruments and outdoor performances with forests, land-based interventions and workshops.
Video article, 2022
Andreyev, J. A. & Lantin, M. & Street, S. & Jacobsen, C. & Madsen, K. & Overstall, S. & Felsing, L. & Plisic, L., (2023) “Branching Songs”, Journal of Embodied Research 5(2): 4. doi: https://doi.org/10.16995/jer.9016
Julie Andreyev, artist, Associate Professor, Emily Carr University (ECU)
Sadira Rodrigues, Director of the Sunshine Coast Arts Council (SCAC)
Giorgio Magnanensi, Director of Vancouver New Music (VNM).
Maria Lantin, Director, Basically Good Media Lab, ECU
Simon Lysander Overstall, artist, PhD candidate, Simon Fraser University (SFU)
Keira Madsen, research assistant, ECU
Lara Felsing, graduate research assistant, ECU
Emma Pallay, graduate research assistant, ECU
Myles Feltenberger, research assistant, ECU
Itamar Sitbon, research assistant, ECU alum
Sam Street, research assistant, ECU
Cara Jacobsen, research assistant, ECU
Leanne Plisic, research assistant, ECU
Branching Songs Ensemble:
Julie Andreyev, Tree and Lightning Stick instruments
Simon Lysander Overstall, Tree instrument and software programming
Keira Madsen, Tree Voice instrument
Myles V Feltenberger, Looper instrument
Giorgio Magnanensi, resonators and diffusion
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada
Emily Carr University of Art & Design
Basically Good Media Lab, ECU
Sunshine Coast Arts Council
Vancouver New Music
contact: jandreyev @ ecuad.ca