Centre for Research-Creation in Media Arts and Technologies

Rosemary Mountain

Rosemary Mountain


Rosemary Mountain is a composer, musicologist and researcher who returned to Canada and her hometown of Montreal in 1999 after several years of teaching in Europe. Since the mid-1980s, she has been developing new tools and strategies for examining music that resists the traditional score-based Western harmonic analysis: rhythmic complexities, multiple-layered works, electroacoustics, non-Western, and music in multimedia contexts. Her methodology incorporates current research from perception and cognition as well as educational psychology. Since 2002, she has been developing a unique research platform now in Phase III: NESTAR - a Network of Exploratory Spaces for Temporal Arts Research - designed to stimulate and refine our discourse about sound and multimedia. She is a member of various international editorial boards, scientific committees and organizations including the Electroacoustic Music Studies Network, the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media and Technology, the International Journal of Cinema, and the International Society for the Study of Time. An Associate Composer of the Canadian Music Centre, she composes acoustic, electroacoustic, and mixed works and continues to explore the microtonal expressive potential of violin and santur. She also collaborates with her husband Harry Mountain, sculptor and Celtologist, on a variety of artistic research projects.

Research Overview

NESTAR - a Network of Exploratory Spaces for Temporal Arts Research - consists of a set of networked environments designed to heighten the awareness of the role of sound in art and research contexts. It centres on a testing platform for investigating sound and its latent and potential correlations with space, light, movement, image and words, and facilitates investigation of auditory and multimodal perception and the degree to which such perceptions may be shared. It also focuses attention on the potentials and shortcomings of various classification systems. The platform is characterized by a mixture of technology and traditional aspects in a playful and easily-navigated environment, and is set up to link closely with relevant research on an international level. Its versatility enables it to function within a variety of contexts: research labs, festivals, galleries, schools, and museums; it is also showing potential for such diverse uses as translation studies, market analysis, and artistic collaboration.  A virtual version under development will facilitate communication between network nodes and thus promote trans-cultural research. NESTAR is supported by an international, multi-disciplinary team of experts for advice on content, design and interpretation of data, and funded by SSHRC.

Interactive Multimedia Playroom

Project Highlights

The Interactive Multimedia Playroom is celebrating its 10th anniversary in Iberia in 2012 where the first offspring IMP3 ('IMP-cubed') will be inaugurated as a pilot year-long exhibit in the Fábrica Ciência Viva science museum, Aveiro (Portugal). It will also be returning to the Avanca (Portugal) film festival / in conference in July, and installed in Madrid (Spain) for incorporation into graduate teaching and research in the Music Department of the Universidad Autonoma and the Architecture Department of the Technical University.



Affiliated Graduate Students and Research Assistants

Julian Stein
Maxwell Stein
Ian Hattwick
Solmaz Shakerifard