Tod Emel


The aesthetics and ethics of punk, d.i.y. and skate culture have always played a large role in my artistic practice. Growing up relatively isolated in the small town of Vanderhoof in central British Columbia, I latched onto every manifestation of this seemingly mysterious and ill-defined counterculture that I could get my hands on. I quickly became an avid collector of whatever music seemed to me as ‘difficult,’ ‘outsider’ or just strange. My current audio art practice developed through my involvement with the Noise Jam evenings at AKA’s sister organization PAVED Arts in 2009. These noise jams coalesced around a core group of performers, with PAVED Art’s Artistic Director David LaRiviere and previous Technical Coordinator Ian Campbell and myself eventually forming the audio/visual improvisation trio Psychic Driving Range. Reflecting on my past activity, there is the recurring interest in collaborative action. I have a sense that it is always first and foremost in the context of collective creativity where our activities take on meaning and find authentic purpose. Ironically, I believe this is where the ethos of punk and d.i.y. (do it yourself) alluded to earlier is most productive, and rings most true.