Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Pantone Perfect

Pantone Perfect, one of two projects we developed for the 2014 Urban Lights Ruhr in Hamm Germany, has been added to our website.

With the assistance of the the Musée d'histoire des sciences de Genèves, Switzerland, we recorded the exact Pantone value of each of the original 52 hues from Saussure's Cyanometre from 1787, and faithfully reproduced them in dry colour pigments. Each hour through the duration of the project, we followed Saussure's rigourous but ultimately futile attempt to measure precisely and reproduce the blueness of the sky. 

For more information on the project please click here.

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Views of the West Coast of Scotland

In spring of 2014 the Glasgow School of Art suffered a fire that destroyed the famous Mackintosh Library and all its content. Cristine Garriga, a Master student from Glasgow School of Art, has responded to the fire with a video work called My Bookcase, where through filmed interviews with artists who had books held in the original collection, she is helping to reconstruct the Mackintosh library with stories regarding their books and reconstituting the collection.

Sans façon's contribution to the Library is 'Views of the West Coast of Scotland' which was made while in residency at Cove Park, in 2001. The publication was in collaboration with writer John Calcutt.

For more information about Cristine's project and to see her interview with Tristan click here.

 Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Avenue Magazines Top 40 under 40

Many thanks to Calgary's Avenue Magazine for making us one of their Top 40 Under 40 for 2014! We couldn't have done it without the exceptional people who help make WATERSHED+ possible.

Photo credit: Erin Brooke Burns

To read the Avenue Magazine interview with Tristan Surtees and Charles Blanc; click here

Thursday, 28 August 2014

A Walk at the Edge of the World

We have just be notified that A Walk at the Edge of the World received a third place award from the Scottish Arts Club, in the best new Scottish drama performance category at the Fringe the judges said "The Strength and sheer power of drama are such that, as an art form, it continues to evolve and, with this wonderful "performance piece", Magnetic North has expanded the boundaries and taken us to a newly-crafted "edge"

The ceremony took place Sunday 24 August at the Arts Club, sadly we weren't able make it in person, but were there in spirit.

Thanks also to Total Theatre for their wonderful review of A Walk at the Edge of the World!

Another article just posted on the Pebblesshire News site 'Walk reveals hidden secrets'

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

You Are Here - Glasgow 2014

The commonwealth games have wrapped and You Are Here is no longer present in the skyline of Glasgow. We are very grateful to have had such a great team who made it possible. Here are a few images of the Merchant City during the games.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Cacher pour mieux montrer

Follow the link below to hear an interesting conversation on CBC Saskatoon with Janet Zweig, Jury member for American’s for the Arts', Public Art Year in Review, about our project Cacher pour mieux montrer (Hide to show better) which received recognition as one of the top public art projects in North America in 2013.


Thursday, 31 July 2014

A Walk at the Edge of the World

This week, the play we developed with Magnetic North Director Nicholas Bone and Actor Ian Cameron was selected By the Scotsman critics as one of the 30 highlights of the 2014 Edinburgh Fringe, if you are in Edinburgh in August, you can catch it at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

You Are Here - Glasgow 2014

You are here has been commissioned for the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

You are here playfully references the red arrow found on maps to identify your location, first shown at National Waterfront Museum in Swansea, You are here will now be in the heart of Glasgow, hovering over the cultural hub in the Merchant City for the duration of the Games and the Merchant City Festival.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Critical Theory Book Club

We are co-hosting Andrea Williamson’s critical theory book club tonight, this will be the second of three. Looking at site-specific Art, our second pick is an excerpt titled 'Sitings of Public Art: Integration Versus Intervention' found in 'One Place after Another' written by Miwon Kwon.
If you’re interested you can sign up here, or if your not in Calgary and would like to read along with us, we’ll keep the blog up to date with the next book selected.

Friday, 27 June 2014

Public Art Network - Year In Review

We’ve just received confirmation that our piece Cacher pour mieux montrer (Hide to show better), commissioned by the City of Saskatoon's Placemaker Program, has been recognized by the Americans for the Arts and selected for the Public Art Network - 2014 Year in Review, along with two of our WATERSHED+ projects.

Americans for the Arts recognizes outstanding public art projects in North America each year. This year PAN received 345 applications from public art programs and artists. A total of 37 projects were selected from the open call process. We feel very honoured to be recognized by the Americans for the Arts.

Monday, 9 June 2014


Join us for the Creative City Network of Canada Summit in Hamilton this week! We will be participating as both keynote speakers and in the Peer-to-Peer Presentations!

For more information click here.

Monday, 26 May 2014


We are working on a series of videos to share the innovative working process of WATERSHED+. For this first video city managers and engineers of this City of Calgary Business Unit talk about the ground-level integration of professional contemporary artists in their day-to-day working process:


A Walk at the Edge of the World

A Walk at the Edge of the World is touring again this summer. We worked on this last year with director Nicholas Bone and performer Ian Cameron. More information to come!

A Walk at the Edge of the World - trailer from Magnetic North on Vimeo.

Monday, 12 May 2014

Fire Hydrant Fountains

The weather must be getting warmer because the testing of the fire hydrant fountains has started! We will be launching the first of the season at the Calgary International Children’s Festival happening from the 21st to 24th of May. Watch for the fountains throughout the summer as they will be installed to provide drinkable water at festivals and special events.

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

The Distance Between Us

The Distance Between Us will be in the next Cahiers intempestifs: Des hommes de caractères, Chronicling the life and work of the great men in Typography. The Cahiers are beautiful publications and we are delighted to be included in this edition. The Cahiers Intempestifs are published in french in limited additions, they can be ordered here - we will be sure to re post once it’s published.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014


Just confirmed we are Keynote Speakers for Creative City Network of Canada Summit in Hamilton, Ontario from June 11-13 and also taking part in the Public Art Round Table and panel discussions.  We are delighted to be invited and hope to see you there!

Monday, 14 April 2014

Critical Theory Book Club

Andrea Williamson has kindly invited us to co-host her critical theory book club for the next three events looking at Public Art, our first pick is an essay titled Space, Place, and Site in Critical Spatial Arts Practice by Jane Rendell found in The Practice of Public Art; Edited by Cameron Cartiere and Shelly Willis. If you’re interested you can sign up here, or if your not in Calgary and would like to read along with us, we’ll keep the blog up to date with the latest books selected.

Friday, 11 April 2014

ACAD Panel Discussion

A big thanks to ACAD and the Illingworth Kerr Gallery for inviting us to be part of the Panel Discussion following Jørn Mortensen’s fabulous talk on the 31st of March. It is timely conversation to be had and we found the discussion thought provoking and enjoyable.

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Bristol Promenade Update

Our project for the end of the Brunel Mile in Bristol is near completion and here are a few more pictures of the progress!

It started life as an exploration of spaces and planes defining a public space, and later morphed into a design responding more precisely to the particular man-made conditions to create a landscape specific to the space.

Photo Credit Cullinan Studios

Photo Credit Cullinan Studios

Photo Credit Cullinan Studios

The final design is a boardwalk promenade space along a meadowy landscape fed by the runoff rainwater from the adjacent building. In collaboration with Cullinan Studio Architects and Grants Associates the journey of the rainwater is celebrated with the visible drain pipes, collection dishes and open rills distributing the water onto the grassland slope.
The different growing conditions (slope, orientation, rainwater runoff) are highlighted by the use of a variety of biodiversity and habitats (grasses, damp grassland, marginal vegetation and woodland groundcover). Combined with these conditions the experience of the harbour side (ruderal plants and riparian habitat) is drawn up into the Promenade.

This project was commissioned by Crest Nicholson Regeneration as part of the Harbourside development.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Six Acres Update

On our way to Ruhr we stopped in to see the progress of our project Six Acres. Things are progressing along quickly! Looking forward to sharing the completed images, but for now here is a sneak peak.

Urban Künste Ruhr

We’ve just come back from a workshop in the ruhr area for Urban Künste Rühr and what a pleasure it was! Urbane Künste Ruhr is based on the unique urban landscape of the Ruhr Area and works together with artists, networks, and cultural institutions to investigate the core of urbanity. We’re looking forward to continue working with them.