TD Community Sunday: Experimenting with Oozing Oobleck

In her films, artist Mika Rottenberg explores the different ways we can interact with matter. Her film Spaghetti Blockchain, which is also the title of her exhibition at MOCA, shows colourful objects being melted, burned, squished, and sliced. When we handle an object or material, it will behave based on its state of matter – solid, liquid, or gas. But what if a material acted like two different states of matter at the same time?

Above: Mika Rottenberg, Spaghetti Blockchain, 2019. Stills from single-channel video installation. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth.

For our May TD Community Sunday, MOCA was joined by three special guests for a virtual workshop all about Oobleck, an ooey-gooey material that can shift from solid to liquid instantly. Caitlin Gottinger, an Ontario Science host, showed us how to create Oobleck using just cornstarch and water, and talked about the science behind this fascinating material. Then, artists Germaine Liu and Christopher Willes guided us on a journey of listening and sound-making through touch, movement, and object activation to explore and get to know the Oobleck.

Watch the full workshop recording below:

You can learn more about Oobleck using this downloadable PDF :

About the Artists:

Germaine Liu (b. 1983, Hong Kong) is a composer/percussionist based in Tkaronto. Liu is interested in exploring and sharing things she finds joyful in collaborative settings, with hopes that participants open and willing to participate. She loves tactile, movement, sonic and physical explorations of found objects and percussion.

Works she composed include Still Life – a 45-minute sounding installation for found objects, Puzzle Piece for prepared violin, Water Music – pieces for water and found objects, CeramiX – for ceramic creations by Chiho Tokita, See, and Draw exploring live-interactive notation with open instrumentation ensemble and Quarantine Playground, co-composed with Joe Sorbara using Zoom Video Communications Software as the score.

Christopher Willes is a multidisciplinary artist, composer/musician, and facilitator based in Toronto and Montreal. His work focuses on the subject of listening, as inherently interdisciplinary and relational practice—combining performance, exhibition, publication, collaboration, and learning. He also regularly facilitates workshops on sound and listening in visual and performing arts settings. He studied music at the University of Toronto, and received an MFA from Bard College.

Special thanks to: Caitlin Gottinger, the Ontario Science Centre, Mark Zurawinski (videography and audio recordings), Germaine Liu, and Christopher Willes.

TD Community Sundays are made possible by TD Bank Group through its corporate citizenship platform, TD Ready Commitment.


MOCA thanks Ontario Trillium Foundation for their support of our Public Programmes and Learning Initiatives.