By Mariya Guzova

You may know Raine Maida as the lead singer and songwriter of the alternative rock band Our Lady Peace.

With his complex and poetic lyrics, and an insatiable passion for writing music, Maida has been expanding his solo career releasing a number of EP’s and albums since 2006.

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 zeeBigBang spoke with Maida about his work outside the band.

“I decided to do a solo record not because I wanted to leave the band, but because I write so much. It’s a way for me to get that stuff out rather than it sitting on a shelf. With the band, especially being signed to a label the way we were, there’s only twelve records a year and I have so much more material that needs to get out there,” explains Maida.

Maida’s famous writing style involves deeply meaningful, and sometimes cryptic poetic lyrics. Both his solo work and songs from Our Lady Peace are known to evoke strong imagery and emotion, often speaking to larger issues. “My solo stuff is basically spoken word, definitely more poetic. Everything starts with a poem, and then I sit down and add a beat and some guitar. And I love that process, and as soon as I get into it I know it’s my solo stuff and not Our Lady Piece. Its one of the ways I differentiate.”

Today Raine Maida is a veteran in the music industry, but the Toronto native didn’t always see music as his career path, and it wasn’t until he was around 16 years old that he even really started to play.  “I always loved music, but I didn’t always know I wanted to do it. Music was kind of always more my religion even though I grew up catholic. I’ve always found a lot of peace and spirituality in music,” explains Maida.

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The Artist Project: a feast for the

eyes and heart 

Have you ever visited a warehouse full of ideas, ingenuity and truly new artistic concepts? zeeBigBang has – and it’s called The Artist Project.

Now in its sixth year, The Artist Project, features more than 200 artists from Canada and around the world and it continues to provide the answer to: “What is Art?

The Google dictionary defines Art as: The expression or application of human creativity skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture.”  The Artist Project’s definition is much more profound with its rich textures, varied materials, boundless colours and endless array of skill and technique. A veritable feast for the eyes and heart.

Every piece of art on display tells a story. It’s easy to feel like a child eavesdropping on the worldly adventures of artists through their work on exhibit.  An enchanting experience.

Undeniably every artist has his or her personal muse to thank. Each piece of work is crafted as an intimate expression of emotion, reflection and experience.

It is nearly impossible for visitors of The Artist Project to drink fully from such an enormous cup of beauty, insight, wisdom and delight of the senses.

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Deco Dawson's film, Keep A Modest Head, is a biographical documentary focusing on the life of artist, Jean Benoît, the last official member of the Surrealist group.

The film, which premiers at the Toronto International Film Festival this weekend, is itself a surreal experience within within the mind of Benoît. Keep A Modest Head features rare audio recordings and film footage taken in Benoît’s studio in Paris.

zeeBigBang spoke with Dawson on the making of his film and what it was like to get such intimate access to Benoît.

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Fogo Island Arts Corp. is the ambitious transformation of Fogo Island into an arts centre with six contemporary art venues for artists, musicians, writers, filmmakers and curators.

Fogo Island Arts Corp. ist die erfolgreiche Transformation der Fogo Island hin zu einem Kunstzentrum mit sechs „contemporary art“ Stätten für Künstler, Musiker, Schriftsteller, Filmproduzenten und Kuratoren.

Located off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador, Fogo Island Arts was established by the Shorefast Foundation  in 2008 and is set to be completed by 2013. Four of the futuristic-looking venues have already been built with two more on the way. zeeBigBang spoke with German Nicolaus Schafhausen, the Strategic Director of Fogo Island Arts.

Fogo Island Arts, nahe der Küste von Neufundland und Labrador gelegen, wurde von der Shorefast Foundation im Jahre 2008 gegründet und soll 2013 fertig gestellt werden. Vier der futuristischen Stätten wurden bereits gebaut und zwei weitere sind in Planung. zeeBigBang sprach mit dem deutschen Nicolaus Schafhausen, Strategic Director of Fogo Island Arts.

On the top: “Long Studio” by http://www.shorefast.org/?page_id=1058, on the bottom: “Tower Studio” and on the right: “Squish Studio,” both by Ryan William Lockwood

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We’re wrapping up our NXNE Interactive coverage with some more insider tips from last week’s panels.

Here is some helpful advice from rapper D-Sisive, musician Matt Fullbrook and entrepreneur Jayson Gaignard from their panel, The Rise of the ‘Artistpreneur.’

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