Category Archives: News

CymaSpace Announces Access Lab – A Space For All

PRESS RELEASE

PORTLAND, Ore. (January 24th, 2019) – At CymaSpace we believe access to the world is a fundamental human right. For over 5 years we have committed our resources to affecting positive change by encouraging inclusion and equal access for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community. In support of this vision, CymaSpace is thrilled to announce it’s newest initiative; Access Lab – A Space for All. Assess Lab is the next step to facilitating accessibility at the intersection of technology, art and social movements.

Access Lab integrates a Workshop, Education Program and Support Services within our new 800 sq. ft studio. Access Lab provides multimedia workstations, community meeting areas, event production & rehearsal facilities, audio-visual tools, live captioning technology and a pilot micro-grant program to provide disability accommodation resources to individual members and partnering organizations. Access Lab members have access to these resources year-round in tandem with support and mentorship from CymaSpace volunteer staff.
For more information about how to become a member, see our Patreon page:
https://www.patreon.com/cymaspace

Year One Goals:

  1. Increase the frequency and impact of arts and cultural events that are accessible to Deaf & Hard-of-Hearing (DHH) Oregonians and document the impact of the programs.
  2. Spread awareness of accessibility needs of DHH and access requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
  3. Increase the number of Sign Language Interpreters & CART (Live captioners) who are skilled and qualified through partnerships, workshops and provide increased contract opportunities for freelancers.
  4. Create specific work opportunities for Certified Deaf Interpreters (CDI’s) who may experience employment discrimination due to their disability. CDI’s are a valuable/under utilized interpreting asset due to their native Signing skills.
  5. Award small grants to qualifying nonprofit and for-profit organizations that want to provide DHH access services and technology, but need performing arts interpretation or live captioning services.

Access Lab – A Space For All is facilitated by CymaSpace, a Portland non-profit arts and technology incubator. CymaSpace is dedicated to making all cultural events more accessible and inclusive to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing through technology, education and outreach. Committed Deaf and hearing volunteers lend their skills to develop a variety of art installations and stage sets that synergize sound, light, and vibration. The work of CymaSpace has been featured nationally on Jimmy Kimmel Live, as well as at festivals like What The Fest?, PDX Winter Light Festival, Kentucky DeaFestival, and prominent local institutions such as Portland Art Museum, Clark County Historical Museum and Oregon Museum of Science & Industry (OMSI).

For PR/Media Inquiries contact Myles de Bastion:


An Experience Beyond Sound at the Northwest Deaf Arts Festival

Press Release

PORTLAND, Ore. (April 24, 2018) – CymaSpace is thrilled to announce that the first annual Northwest Deaf Arts Festival (NWDAF) will take place on June 16, 2018 at Mississippi Studios. The NWDAF will bring together top national Deaf artists who share a vision for an inclusive and innovative multi-sensory cultural extravaganza made equally accessible for both Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) and hearing audiences. A diverse mix of Deaf artists will perform live on stage, backed by the latest sound visualization, open captioning and tactile technologies created by CymaSpace volunteers.

Headlining the NWDAF will be Detroit’s Deaf hip-hop artist Sean Forbes who complements his lyrics with American Sign Language. Hip Hop music has caught the attention of young DHH teens with its expressive, gestural performances. Sean has created a series of popular music videos with Oscar-winning Deaf actress Marlee Matlin and Deaf percussionist Evelyn Glennie. The festival will also feature dance sensation Antoine Hunter of the Urban Jazz Dance Company, and renowned Deaf poet Raymond Luczak. In addition, several local performing artists are on the roster, including immersive multimedia performer and CymaSpace founder Myles de Bastion. Tickets for the family matinee and evening show (21 and over) are available at www.nwdeafartsfest.com.

“When artists involve more of the senses, their work is not only more accessible and inclusive, but also more engaging and exciting. We really want to increase awareness for Deaf artists and provide more opportunities for Portlanders to experience Deaf culture. Deaf and signing artists bring a unique perspective to the arts,” says de Bastion.

NWDAF is produced by CymaSpace, a Portland non-profit arts and technology incubator. CymaSpace is dedicated to making all cultural events more accessible and inclusive to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing through technology, education and outreach. Committed Deaf and hearing volunteers lend their skills to develop a variety of art installations and stage sets that synergize sound, light, and vibration. The work of CymaSpace has been featured nationally on Jimmy Kimmel Live, as well as at festivals like What The Fest?, PDX Winter Light Festival, Kentucky DeaFestival, and prominent local institutions such as Portland Art Museum and Oregon Museum of Science & Industry (OMSI).

CymaSpace began in a basement near historic Mississippi Ave in Portland’s NE district. Profoundly Deaf artist and designer Myles de Bastion was frustrated with the challenge of creating music. Progressive hearing loss had left him unable to hear the notes or lyrics. Falling back on his technical training, de Bastion connected with the Portland maker community to create interactive light sculptures, enhancing the experience of music with visual representations of sound frequencies and dynamics.

As a member of the Deaf community, de Bastion became aware of barriers for DHH people who enjoyed performance art. Many budget-strapped arts & cultural organizations struggle to provide accessibility accommodations such as sign language interpreters. Therefore, de Bastion founded CymaSpace in 2013 with the mission to facilitate arts and cultural events that are inclusive of the DHH community.

According to the US Census, more than 180,000 Oregonians have difficulty hearing. Many experience isolation and negative stigma. CymaSpace strives to meet the challenges many in the Deaf community face by providing role models and increasing awareness of Deaf culture, which has a rich heritage of social beliefs, behaviors, literary traditions, values and artistic talent.

Key sponsors of the NWDAF include the Regional Arts & Culture Council, Randall Charitable Trust, Oregon Arts Commission, and Willamette Week Give!Guide.

Northwest Deaf Arts Festival website: http://www.nwdeafartsfest.com/
High Quality Media/Images & Event Resources: https://goo.gl/8ZRX73
CymaSpace website: http://www.cymaspace.org

For PR/Media Inquiries contact Chris Balduc: chris@cymaspace.org

CymaSpace at OAD DeafFest IV

On July 30, 2017, CymaSpace will be partnering with the Oregon Association of the Deaf (OAD) in its fourth annual DeafFest at Oaks Park. CymaSpace will be making an appearance at DeafFest IV with its own vendor exhibit available in the afternoon.

In the evening, CymaSpace will support OAD by having a team of volunteers prepare the stage for the conference performance. The performance will start at 7:00 PM and feature Indian Deaf dancers, Veena and Vijay Advani. The dancers will be performing an Indian and Bollywood dance on a vibrating stage. This performance is an opportunity for DHH and hearing audiences to learn about the Indian Deaf culture. After the dancers end their show, CymaSpace will continue to assist OAD in removing the equipment.

The performance will feature our Cymatic LED racks. These weatherized, self-contained, modular LED curtain racks are designed for plug-and-play operation with no external lighting controller hardware or computer/software required. Our LED Racks are the most economical option for adding a dazzling Cymatic light display to your event and since they contain an embedded microprocessor and internal microphone, can be set-up without the need for a lighting or sound engineer. These racks are available for you to rent. The link is down below.

Cymatic LED Rack Pair

CymaSpace is currently looking for volunteers. There are opportunities to get involved and assist by volunteering at the exhibit and the stage. CymaSpace is looking for American Sign Language (ASL) users who can volunteer as interpreters at the vendor exhibit for all three shifts.

If you are interested in volunteering for this event, please contact us at volunteer@cymaspace.org.

Breaking Down Barriers for Deaf Access at Music Venues

14700743_10209553582429225_2822563061803083390_oKimberly Jack and Michelle Crane are two Deaf Portlanders who share a love of the diverse music and concert scene in Portland, Oregon. They planned to see a concert in October 2016 with their friend Helen Ebey, so Michelle asked the manager at Doug Fir Lounge to provide a sign language interpreter. To their dismay, Doug Fir Lounge told Michelle’s group that they couldn’t afford interpreters and that having them would be “distracting” for concert-goers. Many venues and bands are not aware of the need to provide equal access to music. They don’t know about resources to interpreting services, or stipulations related to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) that may apply to them. The promoter for the band “Stone In Love” also declined the request for an interpreter.

Jack and Crane went on FaceBook and Twitter to protest the decision to deny them service. They also contacted Myles de Bastion at CymaSpace, an up-and-coming non-profit that aims to improve accessibility to the arts for patrons who are deaf or hard of hearing. In addition to creating cutting-edge sound-reactive displays, CymaSpace has identified the need to advocate for the deaf and hard of hearing community by educating performance venues about the ADA so they can provide equal access to their concerts.

de Bastion consulted with the Oregon Association of the Deaf, a leading northwest Deaf advocacy group, for guidance. He contacted the Doug Fir Lounge organizer and explained about the needs of Deaf and hard of hearing patrons. The band and the staff then understood about the ADA as well as the benefits of supporting all types of concertgoers. In a move to provide equal access to all their fans, the concert promoter hired two local interpreters, Amanda Hays and Jamie Antonick, on de Bastion’s recommendation.

Even though the interpreters had only a week to prepare for this sold-out Stone in Love “Journey” performance, they successfully were able to interpret and provide access for Jack, Crane and Ebey. Jack and Crane were pleased with the results and were grateful for de Bastion’s and CymaSpace’s intervention on their behalf. “Jason (the band promoter) met up with us before and after the concert which was very cool of him to do. He was excited to see just how much it added to their show,” Crane said.

The interpreter presence at the concert helped to spread awareness of American Sign Language and the deaf and hard of hearing community. Concert goers learned that even Deaf and hard of hearing people love music and want to be included in entertainment events.

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Thanks are extended to J-Fell Productions, the Doug Fir Lounge, interpreters Amanda Hays and Jamie Antonick, Deaf Advocates Tammy Richards and Bethany DonGiovanni, and the Oregon Association for the Deaf for this successful outcome. As a result of the preceding events and positive feedback, the event coordinator has already reserved four interpreters for the next Stone in Love “Journey” concert, which will be held at the at the McMenamins Crystal Ballroom (1332 W. Burnside, Portland OR) on January 28th.

 

Credits:

Article Author: Anne Gray Liversidge
Photography: Fotorazzo Photography, David M. Smith

ASL Hideaway receives attention and critical acclaim from Kiesza herself.

ASL Hideaway was seen by Kiesza and got their seal of approval when she tweeted, “Wow, this is amazing.” to her followers.

If you have not seen the video yet, you can watch it here. Share with anyone who would enjoy watching too!

CymaSpace is committed to facilitating projects that showcase #Deaftalent and the positive perspectives of Deaf culture.

ASL Hideaway Press Release

Check out this stunning ASL Dance video from Cymaspace featuring a cast of amazing #‎DeafTalent in this addictive rendition of Kiesza’s run-away hit Hideaway, made accessible for the Deaf & Hard-of-Hearing. Choreographed by Scott Selby of 2 Deaf Feet Dance Collective, for many of the cast, you’d never believe it was their first time learning how to dance! Filmed in Portland, Oregon 2016 and produced by Red Lab Films with support by Portland Community Media and Portland’s vibrant ASL community, the end result is a visually poetic story of intimacy, friendship and love. For more information about this Hideaway project go to http://www.cymaspace.org/hideaway. #‎ASLHideAway #‎accessiblearts #‎deafcan #‎ASLDance

Copyright 2016 CymaSpace, Red Lab Films & 2 Deaf Feat Dance Collective.

We do not reserve the rights of the music “Hideaway” by Keisza (https://itunes.apple.com/…/album/hideaway-single/id808750149)

Check out more amazing work by the team behind #ASLHideAway:

CYMASPACE
http://www.cymaspace.org
http://www.instagram.com/cymaspace
http://www.twitter.com/cymaspace
http://www.facebook.com/cymaspace

RED LAB FILMS
http://www.redlabpdx.com
https://vimeo.com/user20763147
http://www.instagram.com/redlab_films
http://www.facebook.com/redlabpdx

2 DEAF FEET DANCE COLLECTIVE
http://2dfdance.tumblr.com
http://www.instagram.com/2deaffeetdance
http://www.facebook.com/2dfdance/
http://www.twitter.com/2deaffeet

Arts & Accessibility Event Series Press Release

Announcing the first installment in a showcase series celebrating the future of inclusive cultural events brought to you by CymaSpace: www.cymaspace.org/events

RESERVE YOUR TICKET NOW!
We have a very limited number of tickets available, reserve yours early to avoid disappointment: http://cymaspace-giddyup.brownpapertickets.com.

WHAT TO EXPECT
Guests will be treated to a fully accessible live performance with ASL interpreted performance, sound-reactive lighting, projected visuals, vibrating furniture, creative captions and more!

ASL interpreters will be provided.

NEXT COMING EVENT!
GiddyUp: Arts & Accessibility Event Series​ Sunday, July 10th 2016 from 5:00 – 8:00pm.

THE FEATURED ARTIST
GiddyUp is Evan Feenstra and Adrian Hopffgarten, two wild and whimsical friends who have been playing music together since they first met nine years ago. Their songs straddle multiple genres from pop, rock, and hip-hop, to folk, psychedelic, and space opera. GiddyUp embraces collaboration, improvisation, and spontaneity of all kinds. The infectious energy in their music will be sure to get you on your feet. They will be performing with projection artists Hassan Mahmood and Ivana Horvat.

More Arts and Accessibility event series announcements coming soon!

CymaSpace seeks part-time event coordinator.

Performing Arts nonprofit seeks event coordinator.

CymaSpace, a young but fast growing non-profit based in SE Portland is looking to hire a paid part-time freelance event coordinator.

Our mission is to make performing arts more accessible & inclusive to the Deaf & Hard of Hearing through Technology, Education & Outreach. Take a moment to learn more about our work and mission at cymaspace.org.

If you have experience managing and coordinating arts/community/nonprofit events, and the idea of working with the cutting-edge intersection of arts, accessibility and technology in an inclusive, Deaf-friendly environment excites you, stop what you are doing and contact us!

Key responsibilities

  • Work with Board of Directors to familiarize self with mission and needs of the Deaf community
  • Work directly with Board President to coordinate a monthly Arts & Accessibility showcase event.
  • Act as main liason and point of contact for performers, ASL interpreters, engineers and event staff.
  • Create planning documents, run sheets, stage riders and staff/volunteer shifts
  • Coordinate with digital/print designers to create promotion materials.
  • Update wordpress-based website, create Facebook events and set-up event ticketing via Brown Paper Tickets.

Requirements

    • Interest in nonprofit and charity work (especially in the arts and/or Deaf community).
    • Able to commit to working on-site on Sundays, 2-3 times a month
    • Available to coordinate activities during each monthly event (6-8 hour shift)
    • Outstanding English Reading/Writing abilities.
    • Excellent project management, communication, organization and time-keeping skills (Managing grants and projects in Google Documents/Spreadsheets and keeping track of hours worked).

 

Priority given to candidates demonstrating:

  • Keen interest in accessibility and technology
  • Fluency in ASL (American Sign Language) & familiarity with Deaf Culture.
  • Pro-active support of local arts and culture in Portland, OR.

To apply

Send your resume, a brief introduction about why you would be a suitable candidate along with samples of prior marketing work to recruitment@cymaspace.org.

Arts & Accessibility Showcase Gala 2016 Video now live!

Arts & Accessibility Showcase Gala 2016 Video now live!
Video is in ASL & with English Closed Captions (click the “CC” icon). Thank you to all the amazing supporters and the team behind CymaSpace who made this video possible!
More event information available on the Arts & Accessibility Showcase Gala event page.

LIMITED TICKETS AVAILABLE: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2526454

MUSIC CREDITS:
Kaylee Rob – Rock for you (Buy Track)

Arts & Accessibility Showcase Gala 2016 Promotional Video

Special CymaSpace discount to ASL Interpreted Performance of Overview Effect

CymaSpace is pleased to partner with Portland Center Stage and Tylor Neist by offering discounted tickets to an ASL interpreted matinee multi-sensory performance of Overview Effect. Guests can expect an exciting fusion of voice narration (made accessible through ASL interpretation), NASA footage, electronic soundscapes and sound-reactive theatre magic and backed by the Bridgetown Orchestra.

Location
Portland Center Stage / Ellyn Bye Studio
128 NW 11th Ave, Portland

Date
Thursday, April 21, 2016 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM (PDT)

Purchase Tickets
Discounted Tickets for CymaSpace Patrons.

Overview Effect by Portland composer and musician Tylor Neist takes us on an immersive theatrical and musical journey through the cosmos to explore the link between our inner and outer worlds. This innovative, hour-long performance is a perfectly distilled and seamlessly interwoven capsule of art and information that inspires self-reflection.

“Tylor Neist’s dramatic chamber-ensemble score controls the tone of the evening marvelously”
– Marty Hughley, The Oregonian

Neist’s gorgeous and mesmerizing musical score combines with breathtaking Hubble Telescope projections and historic Apollo footage to glorious affect. Further powered by live orchestra, electronic soundscapes, spoken word, theater magic, Portland Center Stage’s intimate Ellyn Bye Studio will come alive with possibility.

To receive your discount to the ASL interpreted performance, please follow the special eventbrite link to purchase tickets at $20 (full price $45), up to 1 hour before the show begins at 2pm, Thursday 21st 2016.

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/overview-effect-tickets-20722292936?discount=CYMASPACE