· By Rachel Hickey

Jaguar Sun x Ahmri Vandeborne collaboration creates sensory dreamscape for live virtual show

Many may think that there is no common point of reference between music and arts, but the latest Live @ 44 collaborative show featuring musician Jaguar Sun and interdisciplinary artist Ahmri Vandeborne proved otherwise. 

On Sunday, February 28, ticket holders enjoyed the streamed show from the comfort of home as they were introduced to a new sensory experience, entering the enchanting world of Jaguar Sun’s ethereal melodies and Vandeborne’s beautifully layered artwork, broadcast live from Good Company Productions headquarters in Downtown Kitchener. 

Live @ 44 is an event series that pairs a live musical performance with visual artwork from a different local designer each month. The visual set created for the show is unique to the artist's interpretation of the band's music, making for a truly joint showcase of music and art, together.

How art and music collide

Taking inspiration from bands such as Coldplay, Real Estate and Youth Lagoon, musician Chris Minielly makes experimental dream pop under the name Jaguar Sun. 

When asked about the creative process of collaborating with artist Ahmri Vandeborne, Minielly reflected, “I’ve always imagined my aesthetic through the combination of light and colour. When Ahmri brought up the idea of using projection to form hazy layers of light, I knew it was the perfect fit.”

To get a clearer vision, Vandeborne pushed further by asking what colours Minielly was drawn to and incorporated those deep reds, blues, purples and warm yellows in what would become the final installation.

As an interdisciplinary artist, Vandeborne is always exploring new mediums, whether it’s illustration, installation, printmaking, painting or something completely new like projection in her latest project for Live @ 44. 

"With a background in more traditional art forms, I used to shy away from bringing technology into my work," said Vandeborne. "This project has opened up a door to express my art in a new way." 

In layering environmental factors such as light, colour, brightness or darkness, and mapping these factors to the sounds of the show, the art and music interacted in such a way that triggered varying emotions and feelings within audience members. Both Minielly’s music and Vandeborne’s artwork were layered, reflective and warm.

One audience member commented on the live stream “Such beautiful visuals, a perfect combination.” 

Blue light reflects off prisms

“The exciting thing about this kind of work is that much like live music, it’s temporary,” said Vandeborne, who is used to this type of work as an installation artist. “You can plan as much as you can ahead of time, but once you get there, everything goes out the window. The work informs itself in the space, takes over for a moment in time and then it’s over – if you miss it, you miss it.”

Further collaboration

For the live show, Minielly played alongside Jesse Maranger, a local alternative folk artist and fast friend after the pair happened to cross paths during a lunch break at their previous day jobs.

Jesse Maranger plays guitar

Although the two have different music tastes, the collaboration between friends came naturally. With Maranger’s accompaniment during the live show, audience members were treated to new elements in the arrangements that aren’t featured in the recorded versions. “Jaguar Sun has a bigger sound with Jesse,” said Minielly. “His guitar embellishments interact with mine in a new way, and he features new vocal harmonies on songs like ‘The Heart’.”

Prior to this collaboration, both musicians primarily worked alone. “We are both so familiar with the process of producing and recording music from home, and I think that’s why we clicked so well,” said Maranger. 

Lucky for us, Live @ 44 is just the beginning for this collaboration. Audience members got to hear a special preview of what’s to come as the pair played an unreleased song that will be featured on their upcoming collaborative EP later this year. With Maranger’s personal, emotionally driven song writing and Minielly’s dreamy production, the release of their first single on Friday March 5, 2021 is eagerly awaited. 

From left to right: Jesse Maranger, Ahmri Vandeborne, Chris Minielly

Stay in the loop

The first single off the new collaboration between Jaguar Sun and Jesse Maranger will be available Friday, March 5, 2021. You can pre-save “Sunset” now! Follow Jaguar Sun and Jesse Maranger on Instagram for more new music coming soon.

To see what artist Ahmri Vandeborne is up to next, follow Ahmri on Instagram and check out her studio, Otherwise Studios.

For more information on how Good Company Productions is working in the community to collaborate and support musicians and artists, check out our website to learn more, and join our mailing list to hear about upcoming shows and promotions first.

Photos by Bo Urbina and Isaac Bender.


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published