5 selected recent work

5 selected interdisciplinary work of Sammy Chien:

Made In China, an interdisciplinary performance created and performed by Sammy Chien, Qiu Xia He, Wen Wei Wang and Gao Yanjinzi, with excerpt of interviews by Novus TV at the Firehall Art Centre

Becoming-Chimerik, A Pechakucha Talk about Sammy Chien’s artistic journey in relation with new media art & technology

Infinite Waves, an outdoor interactive/new media/audiovisual installation as part of Fantastical Metamorphosis in Taichung Metropolitan/National Theatre

War Requiem, Interdisciplinary Performance. Projection design by Sammy Chien (with Chimerik) SFU Woodward’s Fei & Milton Wong Experimental Theatre

In Search for Universality in Social Movement, Interdisciplinary Art and Expanded Media, a video essay on Disfiguring Identity Symposium for Surrey Arts GalleryDisfiguring Identity: Art, Migration and Exile. This symposium of talks, screenings, and conversations with artists and curators investigating the use of performance, history, and memory to address art and activism related to racism was co-produced with On Main Gallery Vancouver and Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s Fine Art Department.


for Accelerate@CERN 2015

Chien Wei (Vivi)

Sammy Chien (Chimerik) is a Taipei born, Vancouver-based interdisciplinary media artist who seeks to merge cinema, sound art, new media, and dance performance techniques into a new individual practice. He has studied film at Simon Fraser University (BFA Honors) and developed an expertise in electroacoustic music and digital technology in performance environment. After learning real-time performance software from Troika Ranch (NYC/Berlin) he continues his deep interest in interdisciplinary collaborations and forges deep connections between image, sound, and movement. He has collaborated visually, aurally and conceptually in numerous multi-disciplinary projects range from film, theatre, dance, audiovisual performance to interactive installation which have exhibited across Canada, Western Europe, and Asia including Centre Pompidou(Paris), Museum of Contemporary Arts Taipei, National Centre for the Performing Arts (Beijing),  Hellerau: European Centre for the Arts Dresden. Sammy has recently embarked collaboration with the Beijing Modern Dance Company and fortunately working with artists such as Wong Kar Wai’s Cinematographer Christopher Doyle, Zhang Yimou’s production designer Gao Guangjian and the Father of Rock in China Cui Jian as well as having lunch with Ai Wei Wei. Sammy has also been involved in research, collaborations or mentorship in projects that focus on the integration between art, science and technology as well as engaging with various community groups such as social activists, low-income residents, cultural, gender and ethnic minorities and youths. Sammy is the Co-Founder/Co-Artistic Director of Chimerik collective, which is a vision, philosophy and imaginative environment that values creative technology and new media practices as important vehicles capable of bridging various art forms to construct new kinds of artistic engagement and language that are transnational, transcultural and prompt social change.

selected works:

Vivi Wei Chen's dance collaboration project

Vivi & Sammy's interactive dance media collaboration project

Sammy Chien interactive/new media/audiovisual installation

Sammy Chien new media/generative/improvised performance

Sammy Chien projection design for dance theatre

Sammy Chien new media/improvised/interdisciplinary experiment

Sammy Chien Pechakucha Talk about his artistic journey in relation with new media & technology

Sammy Chien video essay on Disfiguring Identity: In Search for Universality in Social Movement,  Interdisciplinary Art and Expanded Media

Sammy Chien older demo reel from experimental film to new media performances 2009-2012


spiritual message from a friend who sacrificed his life 5 years ago

A friend of mine who sacrificed his life in a brawl 5 years ago visited me in my dream last night. Coincidentally, he's father had just picked up his remaining things from the police back to his home and it's just something that he needed to hear. I then realized that it wasn't just a dream. I am very honoured to be able to pass on he's messages to his family and friends. As an artist/spiritualist, in some way, we're messengers, our mission is to bridge the unknown to the known; the virtual/spiritual world to the real-world. I also feel so grateful to get to see this old friend of mine, who seemed to have grown even more mature, sophisticated, altruistic, bright and creative. In the dream he implanted this pedant that he's dad made for him into his left wrist, presumably signifies his embracement for the past as well as determination for altruism and justice. I am so happy for this amazing soul.
The second part of the story is that I had an epiphany of this song Secret Splendor by Buck 65 which delineates: from an accidental death, this soul transcends to heaven. The soul then experiences divinity. During its eternity, the soul had a dream by a beautiful lake and eventually engulfed in a miraculous blissfulness. I had an urged to shared this song with his dad and his dad was astonished by how the content of the song actually describes his favourite lake, where the ashes is spread by and this pedant in the middle of the lake. I realized then, this could be his message as well. I remember back in high school he introduced me to Buck 65 when I was still into hardcore gangsta rap, I didn't understand his poetic level of music yet, until a couple years after.
I still remember there was one time I was walking with him on the street, there was some hoodlum on the street who started shouting at me and ran towards me, I felt this intense sense of danger from this guy. Luckily, my friend just said hey, and the hoodlum saw him and immediately backed off and became really friendly. That's the kind of street credit he owned, and i'm probably just one of many people who he's helped on the street. 7 years after, he died on the street, his physical body has completed its mission and his soul lives on beautifully. I know this even more clearly by now. I want to share this story with everyone, with the permission by his father, whom my friend has always been so proud of. The beauty of family bond that surpasses the boundary of so-called reality, and how an amazing soul can continue to shine and spread love.

Thank you, Benjamin Denim Hare a.k.a Laz 1984 - 2010

For those of you who may have lost someone important during your life in this world-- there's transience, yet, there's eternity.

昨晚, 一個5年前為了幫弟弟解圍結果被一群流氓殺死的朋友托夢給我, 我跟他的爸爸講完後才知道原來剛剛好昨天他爸才去把他最後留下來的遺物從警察局帶回家,他可能擔心他爸太傷心,想請我跟他爸說他很好,而且靈界是很美好的,他的靈魂在很棒的地方。在夢中他把這個他爸做給他的紀念徽章植入他的左手腕裡,好像代表者他的正義精神以及堅強的意念。
他爸爸聽到後非常感動,說這真的是他現在需要知道的。我當下突然有首歌在我心中浮現 Buck 65的歌 Secret Splendor, 我馬上寄給他爸爸聽。幾分鐘後,他爸爸很驚訝的跟我說,這首歌很神奇的彷彿是他死去的兒子在述說的他的經歷,歌詞中述說的在永恆天堂中主角睡著並且經歷的輝煌般與神性的通天感受的那個湖,剛好跟他最喜歡的湖一樣,他的骨灰正是在那個湖邊的樹下,他爸幫他做的紀念徽章在湖底。這是我今天能幫我朋友從靈界給予的第二個訊息。(他爸爸知道後,馬上跑去在那個湖邊,真的感受到他的靈,並相處了一陣子,我聽了一直掉眼淚說:幫我向他問好,然後,我不想再用網路打擾你們了,電子器材有時會干擾到靈界的訊息)
Buck 65 剛好是我們高中認識時, 他介紹給我的音樂,因為我當時還在聽比較多幫派饒舌, 還不太能理解比較詩意性的饒舌音樂,一兩年後,我愛上了這類音樂。我記得高二那年,我在街上混時有個莫名其妙的流氓對我叫囂並且一邊向我衝過來,當下我直接感受到一種絕命的危機。但是他剛好在我旁, 笑笑的說個hey! 那流氓馬上變得很友善,我想因為他在街上的名聲非常好。我想.. 我不知道是他在街上幫助過的多少人其中的一個人而已。7年後, 他被殺死在街上。他的身軀完成了他這世的任務。然而,他的靈魂任然很美的發光著。我現在更確信這件事情了。

身為藝術工作者/靈修者  我想,這就是我們的使命之一,傳達訊息,把未成型的變成型,連結貌似虛幻的未知世界到這現實世界。謝謝你,Ben還有Ben的爸爸給我這個機會還有這麼美的感動,讓我能傳給更多人,尤其是曾經失去過重要的人事物的妳/你們。
‪#‎spirtuality‬ ‪#‎dream‬ ‪#‎spiritualdoor‬ ‪#‎spiritualmessage‬ ‪#‎secretsplendor‬ ‪#‎Laz‬‪#‎justice‬ ‪#‎buck65‬ #secretsplendor ‪#‎streetcredit‬ ‪#‎truro‬

the pedant that Ben's dad made for him with the angel that I put by my bed on top of the pillow where I received his messages

Ben on the right and our best friend Victor on the left, listening to dope hip hop songs in Truro, 2002

Sammy performing with Ben in high school. Ben performs beatboxing live while Sammy breakdance, Truro, 2002.

Secret Splendor by Buck 65
The word miracle isn't really worth the same
As a measure of marvel in heaven as it is on earth
Because extraordinary happenings are commonplace in the promised land
So the precedent is modified
God itself decides the phenomenom fairly fantastic in nature
Happens very rarely by standards set by the practicing masters
Of the spectactular arts in paradise

As I strolled aimlessly edges of sacrement one day
I wasn't looking and died by accident 
With sugar on my tongue and a breeze in each armpit 
I descended to heaven cross-legged by magic carpet
Carried along through tunnels by a flow of waves
I met this soul with the role of issuing haloes
His name was Aurora, one time bet-maker
Everything he said he sang like Chet Baker
He explained the significance of the halo's intentions
The way that each increment of its dimensions
Bore a correlation to the core of your essence
With factors including the learning of lessons
Things that matter the most here being
Reflect and direct on the gleam that you're seeing
Overall size of the particle density
As it corresponds to the mission intensity
Well over 400 factors with gradients
Come into play with each new halo's radiance
With congratulations and repeating my name
He also assured me that no two are the same
It allows you a glimpse of each person's spirit
Without having to come anywhere near it
So with halo in place and my thankfulness pledged
My resident status in heaven was full-fledged

One day in eternity after riding a teeter-totter with God
I fell asleep with my feet in the water of a lake by a tree
In a quiet little place where i could be by myself with the sun on my face
A little while later I awoke to a rumbling
And opened my eyes to see a scene so humbling
I couldn't quite catch my breath
And my pulse doubled as the lake looked like it boiled as it bubbled
But instead of scalding my skin it was soothing

And it only felt like my imagination was melting 
And trickling into a pool of fluid intuition
As secret splendor came to fruition
My own eyes surrendered as rapture found its purpose
As beautiful harmonies danced on the surface
Abstract shapes of all colors first did a dance and then floated
From each bubbled bursted
Literally billions of magnificent things
Would quake and quiver on top of the lake
I glanced left and right to see if maybe anyone else was dreaming this dream
When I turned all the way with my back to the spectre
I saw there an angel in the form of perfection
I felt paralyzed and my voice tried to hide
She glided and gently moved her hips from side to side
Without moving her feet, her hand held out in front of her
Calm and collected my hopes in her palm
The closer she came, and something about her
The most soothing sound grew louder and louder
Intense pleasure ran the length of my spine
As I pulled her towards me with the stength of my mind
When our hands finally touched she told me she loved me
And the shapes from the lake filled the whole sky above me
Instead of our tongues we spoke with our eyes
While music and color pulsed from the skies

It shines
Our edges are dreams running lengthwise
Our secret wishes fluttering lightyears
We fashioned inferences in disguise shapes together
You are the space between my exhales
Our way of understanding is eyes closed navigation
We twist slivers of unconsciousness into sacrement
Ghosts waltz around our backs
Our ideas converge to form corners to hide in

Quicker than dreams we traded our charms
Then spent eternity in each others arms
It was a miracle in heaven
You could see it and hear it everywhere
The synthesis of two souls and one spirit

Our haloes were the exact same size










saving a stranger from drowning, and the beautiful backstory about this man who may be neglected as just another "sketchy lunatic"

Today I went to the crab park to eat my lunch while trying to squeeze out some new ideas for 2 upcoming installation projects, I was starving after 3 hours of online meeting right after waking up. I heard of sound of someone falling, this guy named Allan was on the ground, I ran up and asked if he's okay and if I need to call the ambulance. He said he's okay and it happens to him a lot, and he wants to wash this rock that he had on his hand, it's his wife he said. I looked around and there were a few people around me that were just looking at me as if why I would even talk to that guy. I made sure that he sat down and told him to be careful. I was feeling like a weirdo or something, the people around me gave us a weird gaze almost saying "he's crazy why would you bother talk to him?"  After 10 mins, Allan stumbled towards the ocean and I immediately stood up and ran towards the water. I anticipated this accident as I can see that he was having some problem standing up straight and stay stable. 

To those of you who aren't familiar with the DTES neighbourhood, this area has the highest population of homeless, low-income residents, drug addicts, physical and mental disable folks. Since it's side by side with one of the most posh neighbourhood--Gastown, we get a very dramatic mix of different people. It could be that the people from Gastown immediately assumes, neglects or despises the DTES residents. I am aware of that there are numerous people who would repetitively make up any stories for money and that money might just goes into drugs, and I am able to tell a bit more who they are by living in this hood after awhile. 

At this moment, I didn't care about what's his back story, I just know that I need to save him from drowning. If he continues to go further into the water and falls backwards, he could potentially drown, as I ran towards him, he was fell over, and tried to stand up, and fell even deeper into the water, I ran into the water and tried my best to lift him back up and pull him out of the water. He didn't' choke or anything yet but as I was using all my strength trying to lift this guy who's about 5'9, it wasn't easy, and I looked around… there were a few capable young men, they were just sitting there and watching, especially these two really good looking young dudes, with nice built muscles, nice tattoos and slick hair, not only they were just sitting there, they were actually laughing at us while this whole thing was happening right in front of them. 

I took Allan to sit down and asked him to not go anywhere close to the water anymore, he agreed, he was trying to say something it it was really hard to comprehend him. A blond women (her name is Frankie), biked towards me and waved at me, "come here, can I talk to you for a second?". At that moment.. I was thinking, shit, have I done something wrong? Should I not get close to his guy? "Do you know him?" she said, I said "no, I just wanted to help him, is there something wrong?" She came up close and grabbed both of my hands and said "I saw the whole thing that happened from far away, I couldn't believe that you were the only one who stood up and helped this guy who might of died right there. You're such a great person. I am so glad that you are here." I was almost in tears when she said that, she said she wants to find a journalist to write about this. She was disappointed about how our city became so heartless. I told her that there are still people like her, and we just need to spread this good energy more, I think Vancouver is one of the best city I've lived. She smiled and gave me a big hug. We went back to see Allan and making sure that he doesn't go back to the water again. He then told us that he just wanted to wash his wife, the rock on his name. So we took a closer look at this rock, it's actually a memorial stone of his wife, with her name on it. He said that someone moved his wife and he wants to put her back to where she belongs. We then found the place that he was looking for and helped him replacing the memorial stone of his wife. He was very happy and smiled so brightly. Frankie looked at the large memorial stone by Allan's and was astonished, she said that the dates are the exact same date as her son's death. She pulled out her son's photo. "it's all meant to be", we both said to each other. I took a photo for Allan and Frankie, and Allan's wife's memorial stone. 

The story goes on.. Allan continues to stumble and sat down at the park, I asked him if he needs any help, from paramedics or social worker? He said something like "No no no, I'll be okay". I asked him if he is able to get home? "He shook my hand and said "Yes, you're sooooo kind, you have such a good heart, I am so happy that you are so kind to someone like me. I will be okay please don't' worry". I want to make sure that I give enough respect to him as an individual and not interrupt his life by calling the police or ambulance. I didn't want to be a bad helper who actually just overreacted and made things worse. I hugged him and left him alone.. I was a bit worried so I sat close by for a while and posted this status on Facebook asking my friends what I should do. And then I got a news about a friend who's life might be at risk and had to make a few phone calls to work out the situation (i'll keep this part private for now). And then I checked my Facebook status, I've got many replies from my friends suggesting me to call the police, especially with one of my friend who even was condemning me for not calling the ambulance as if I think I was the doctor or some sort.  So I quickly turned around to see if he's still okay, but he was gone. So I ran around the park and to the street and asked around people to see if I can find him. I started to worried if I would find him bleeding on the ground or something bad. I began to blame myself for the decisions that I am making.

 After 20mins, I found him sitting in the corner of Columbia and E. Hastings. Thank god that he was okay and he was able to make it this far! I went up and said hi, he looked at me and said "HEY SAMMY!" with a big smile. I asked him if he's okay, he shook my hand again and said that I'm so kind, and he's really okay, just wanted to get out of the sun. I tried to offer him some water or cold drinks and he kindly refused. I eventually said goodbye to him, and asked him to be safe, so we can meet again. I slowly walked away… 

As I slowly walked away… I was look back at the people around him.. the further I walk away, the more he has just blends into this image of the DTES… the junkie and poor neighbourhood. I can start to see that from an eye of the Gastown or Yaletown people.. this is just a sad scenery that they probably just want to stay away from and watch from a distance, whether if it's with pity or   disgust. Allan has became smaller and smaller… I almost couldn't see him anymore. And I told myself that Allan is one out of the millions that might actually need some attention and support from us. And this is just one out of the million things that I want to do for this world. 


Sammy's Bio as of 2014 05 13

This is my updated short biography as of 2014 05 13

Sammy Chien (Chimerik) is a Taiwan born, Vancouver-based interdisciplinary media artist who seeks to merge cinema, sound art, new media, and dance performance techniques into a new individual practice. He has studied film at Simon Fraser University (BFA Honors) and developed an expertise in electroacoustic music and digital technology in performance environment. After learning real-time performance software from Troika Ranch (NYC/Berlin) he continues his deep interest in interdisciplinary collaborations and forges deep connections between image, sound, and movement. He has collaborated visually, aurally and conceptually in numerous multi-disciplinary projects range from film, theatre, dance, audiovisual performance to interactive installation which have exhibited across Canada, Western Europe, and Asia. Sammy has also been involved in research, collaborations or mentorship in projects that focus on the integration between art, science and technology as well as engaging with the local community. Sammy is the Co-Founder/Co-Artistic Director of Chimerik collective.

Sammy’s work appearance includes: New Form Festival 2008 & 2010, Dancing on the Edge Festival 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011, Theatre For the Ears: Audio/Visualization,  RENCONTRES INTERNATIONALES PARIS/ BERLIN/ MADRID - New cinema and contemporary art - FILM AND VIDEO SCREENING: Reina Sofia National Museum (Madrid), Centre Pompidou(Paris), Haus der Kulturen der Welt (Berlin), Taipei World Design Expo 2011, DOXA Film Festival 2012, Subtle Technology Festival 2012 (Toronoto), Guelph Contemporary Dance Festival 2012, Queer Arts Festival 2012, Lacking Sound Festival L27 (Taipei), the 10th Push international Performing Arts Festival, 2014 China National Centre for Performing Arts Dance Festival, Khoj International Artist Association (New Delhi), Museum of Contemporary Arts Taipei, Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Hellerau: European Centre for the Arts Dresden (Germany)


Modeling for Lululemon 's new design

Some sneak previews of Lululemon Lab Menswear Designer Tiffany May's new work. She's pushing Lululemon towards quite stylized aesthetics yet still keeping its simplicity and functionality. The materials are really nicely made. I really liked her design and enjoyed modelling for her and this new look for Lululemon.

for more of her photography work:



my street credit

I was at the Astoria for a bass music party, someone came up to me and asked if I am Sammy Chien. I said yes. He smiled and said that he knows my work and it's (*he paused for a beat) "fucking gangsta". 

I want this in my review, please.


Dance In Vancouver 2013: Made In China v2


Program One:
Wen Wei Dance - Made in China v.2

Wednesday November 20, 7pm + Saturday November 23, 9pm
The Dance Centre 

Wen Wei Wang’s intimate new work is a collaboration with Gao Yanjinzi, Artistic Director of Beijing Modern Dance Company, Qiu Xia He, of Vancouver’s Silk Road Music and Sammy Chien, of New Media Art CollectiveChimerik 似不像. Through dance, music, storytelling and new media they explore individual personal narratives that are bound by a shared Chinese heritage, and how their traditional artistic forms have evolved in a modern world.

this is our second collaboration of the work-in-progress version of Made In China. I'm very excited about this piece, as the last time we had a very deep and experiential movement, audio, visual and a very intuitive energy flow… This time we are experimenting with a bit more context and dynamics. We had a very interesting and organic 6 days of rehearsal, working with these genius, so much has arrived to the table. How do I keep it up and keep it down at the same time? Jinzi is 6 months pregnant, too. I'm taking one of her part from the last piece into a very weird version of my own movement. Wen Wei tells a story while Qiu Xia dances. And for the first time, you'll hear Jinzi speaking English on stage. As cliché as it sounds, we all stepped out of our comfort zone towards interdisciplinarity.

I would like to give a BIG THANK YOU shout out to Mark Coniglio, the creator of Isadora (arguably the most creative real-time audiovisual software for performance environment up to date), the Artistic Director of Troika Ranch (the pioneer company for digital performance) and one of the most important new media artist/educator today. He sacrifice his utmost valuable time to help me get through an unexpected technical issue in the software, not only to show his love of art and also a huge encouragement to the young interdisciplinary artist who's still struggling between the both sides of the brain. 

I believe though, that creativity can also come from understanding technicality and even beneath codes/technology, without such a flexibility and intuitive quality in my tools, I wouldn't be able to create something like this--a truly organic and creative process with dance, music, film and new media that includes live sound processing, live audiovisual and real-time/reactive video. Most importantly, it all slowly becoming more and more natural, as if these separated fields really morphed in this common playground, and we're all playing, with our bodies, intellect and find resonances in our soul… the tools that we have, are the extensions of our imagination. 


Photography by Chris Randle & Sophia Wolfe — with Wen Wei Wang at The Dance Centre.

(photo from Made In China v.1, Dancing on the Edge Festival 2013)

Made in China v2 for DIV