A sound project by interdisciplinary artist Amanda Dawn Christie turned into a unique film record of the end of the shortwave transmitter site of Radio Canada International.
Photo Credit: Amanda Dawn Christie

Experimental film shows life and death of RCI antenna site

For interdisciplinary artist Amanda Dawn Christie it started out many years ago as a sound project, trying to capture the radio signals people were hearing in their sinks, toasters and fridges near the Radio Canada International shortwave transmitter site in the Atlantic coast province of New Brunswick. But as the “radio sink girl” started hearing from more and more people about the transmitter site, she decided to make an experimental landscape film, showing the site through all four seasons.

As she prepared for the filmming, it was announced that Radio Canada International would stop transmitting on shortwave in 2012. And then later, that the towers and attennas at the Sackville, New Brunswick site would be demolished.

They were in fact demolished in 2014. And the artist found herself as a unique witness of the end of a site that was constructed in the late 1930s and would transmit Canada’s “Voice to the World” from 1945 until 2012.

RCI’s Wojtek Gwiazda spoke to Amanda Dawn Christie about the beginnings of the film project “Spectres of Shortwave” and the extraordinary efforts she took to document the end of the transmitter site. Christie’s art career includes experimental film, video installation, performance art, photography, and electroacoustic sound design.

Listen

More information:
Spectres of Shortwave film project – here
Amanda Dawn Christie website – www.amandadawnchristie.ca

“Spectres of Shortwave” trailer:

The towers fall:

twitter.com/wojtekgwiazda

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4 comments on “Experimental film shows life and death of RCI antenna site
  1. Grant Hibbs says:

    I was on my way back from PEI when we stopped into the visitor center for the bidge, the lady at the tourist desk if she could help me with anything, I simply asked if I could have a tour of the RCI site, she said they don’t do that there….but she made the call to their office onsite.

    The welcomed me to come to the site. I was super thrilled.
    I was onsite 1 month before the station closed.
    The dummy load heat sinks where the size of a small warehouses.
    They had Harris tube transmitters. Radio curtain walls.
    There was so much more potential for this site. – packet radio ?

    In a time of crisis I sure hope my Iphone is charged.

    Its gone now… sad 🙁

  2. Veikko Repo says:

    I used to listen to Radio Canada on short wave band years ago.
    Feel kind of bad because they are taken down
    Just hope that there would not be situation to need them again.
    Al the best for future broadcasting and thank you for the e-mails

    Sincerely Veikko Repo

  3. Edward Schweikert says:

    Shortwave, may she rest-in-peace. Silicon Valley has brought the world politicians and banish analog to the junk yard of time. When the sun can and does shutdown digital, that should tell the genius politicians you are heading ninety miles an hour down a dead-end street.

  4. Edward Schweikert says:

    What is so wrong with analog radio? I understand that you will only hear shortwave radio or any analog radio/television is in a museum!