STEVE BATES / Artist Residency and Art Show


Steve Bates

Black Seas

07.09 — 24.11 / 2017

Vernissage 28 September 2017 – 5 PM

It is with great pleasure that Sporobole is hosting Montreal artist Steve Bates for a research and creation residency from September 7th to September 28th, followed by an exhibition from the 28th September to 24th November 2017.

Opening of the exhibition and Sound Performance / 28th September



“Black Seas is an ongoing multimedia and performance project under the influence of historical and contemporary experiences of auditory hallucination. Black Seas is a project about listening. It is about listening politically, socially, biologically, psychologically, historically and psycho/acoustically. It is about a weird listening. A listening, as Mark Fisher describes when theorizing the weird and the eerie via Lovecraft, that brings two worlds together; the external and the internal. A weird listening is one that ”…lies beyond standardized perception, cognition, and experience.”

Black Seas takes in horror and weird fiction, film, music and sound studies, medical history, cognitive science, psychiatry, 19th century psychic journals, telecommunications theory, mysticism, philosophy, religion and shared stories. It swims in ecstasy, terror and the banal.

Black Seas considers the grey areas between hallucination and a threshold of hearing, or mishearing. When we listen very, very hard. Weird things happen. This is often the pivot point in horror films – the moment of hearing something .

For my project at Sporobole, I will be working through various sound, radio, video and print elements of Black Seas. This work will be present in the gallery space in experimental and shifting forms.” Steve Bates

- Fisher, Mark. The Weird and the Eerie . London: Repeater Books. 2017.


Steve Bates would like to acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts for financial support.



photo credits: Tanya St-Pierre


Steve Bates is an artist and musician living in Montréal. His work listens to boundaries and borders, points of contact and conflict. Thresholds are explored, stretched and, at times, completely broken. Information and signal feed back onto themselves creating new situations and events. The sonic is the starting point for his projects which are evocations of communication networks and systems, or expressions of spatial and temporal experience. He frequently uses sound material that is site-specific in an attempt to uncover place and how the sonic effects our experience of site. He is currently developing a multi-year project investigating historical and contemporary aspects of auditory hallucination.

His work has been exhibited in Canada, the United States, Europe and Senegal. He works in the field, on the air, in museological/gallery and performance contexts. These shifting territories reflect the content of his practice.