After graduating from Concordia University’s communication studies program, Nicolas worked in corporate communications and public relations for two years before taking the leap into film and television, and completing a masters in scriptwriting at the Université de Montréal.

He has since produced different types of projects such as short films, documentaries and fiction pieces. He has also helped shape Locomotion Distribution, a frontrunner in distributing short films worldwide. Last year, he produced Made in MTL, a short subject documentary series about Montreal, helmed by various up and coming directors, as well as the highly acclaimed web site that has since then received 15 awards and distinctions worldwide.

Nicolas is presently producing and directing a feature length documentary about Globalisation and Identity Into the Mix, and developing several projects with other writers and directors. He is particularly interested in projects that explore multimedia.
Mouna Andraos
Creative Director, Interactive Designer
Mouna joined BlueSponge in 2001 after she received a Bachelor's degree in Arts from Concordia University with a focus in Communication Studies and Liberal Arts. At BlueSponge, Mouna worked on more than 40 (many of them award-winning) mandates for a diverse range of clients from both the corporate and cultural world, including Bell Canada Enterprise, Bombardier, CBC/Radio-Canada, Tele-Québec, FIND (International Nouvelle Danse Festival), Seville Film Pictures, and the Montreal Museum of Contemporary Art. She also wrote and directed the more experimental web project

She has been invited to present her work in numerous venues across Canada and abroad, including INIS (Quebec film and multimedia professional school), Concordia University, the Banff New media Institute, the FCMM (New Cinema and New Media Festival), Horizon Zero (BANFF), Canadian Pavilion at Expo 2005 in Aichi, and was appointed to the jury of the Bell Fund Cyberpitch 3.0 prize. Her latest project, –a co-production between BlueSponge and Locomotion Films- recently won 15 international awards and disctinctions among which a Best of Show & Best of Art at the South By South West web awards, a CyberLion in Cannes and a BIMA in Art & Culture at the British Internative Media Awards. She is currently completing her Master’s degree at the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP), Tisch School of the Arts, New York University, where she hopes to pursue her work on physical interactive experiences and product design.
Ziad Touma
Producer, Director, Scriptwriter
Chosen by Playback magazine as one of their “Top Ten to watch”, and by the Mirror’s Best of Montreal readers’ poll as “Best Local Filmmaker” (after Denys Arcand of course..), Ziad Touma is one of Canada’s fastest rising filmmakers, working in film, television and new media.

Through his production company Couzin Films, Ziad produced, directed and co-wrote Saved by the Belles!, an award-winning feature film starring local nightlife celebrities and debutante starlets, which won Best Feature Film at Toronto’s Inside Out Film Festival (2003) and was nominated for three 2004 Genie Awards (Best Achievement in Cinematography, Best Achievement in Art Direction and Best Achievement in Music – Original Song).

Amongst its many adventures, the Belles’ journey introduced the innovative web site, co-produced with BlueSponge, which won the Boomerang Awards for Best Arts & Culture Website and was nominated as Best Extreme Entertainment Site at the SXSW Awards.

From 1995 to 2001, Ziad delved into a wide range of topics and events involving cinema, music, fashion, pop culture, politics and lifestyle as a producer, director and on-air videographer for Canada’s music television station MusiquePlus/MusiMax. His most recent television projects include directing TVA’s popular weekly entertainment magazine Star Système Showcase's hit docu-soap series Webdreams produced by Galafilm, Showcase’s third season of Kink (2004) for Paperny Films, writing and directing two short documentaries for the series Made in Montreal (2004) broadcast on CTV and TV5 International and produced by Locomotion.

As a freelance journalist, Ziad has reported on the latest tracks and trends of the local and international urban culture for some of Quebec’s top publications such as LaPresse, Voir, ICI, Clin d'Oeil and Summum magazines. Ziad also penned a social commentary column for over four years in the monthly magazine Nightlife, after which he acted as its creative director.
Setsu Hanazaki
Integrated Theater Arts Workshop Facilitator
Integrated Theater Arts Workshop Facilitator. Having encountered people’s drama in Asia at a Japanese drama company Black Tent Theater, Hanasaki joined a local thatre in New Jersey in 1994. After learning Viola Spolin’s improvisational drama methods and creative drama, she returned to Japan and started integrated theater arts workshops and performances in various parts of the country. She also focuses on Forum Theater, where she deals with such issues as family, gender and domestic violence. Her activities encompass a variety of fields including figurative arts workshops. Currently a part-time lecturer at College of Art, Nihon University and at Musashino Art Umiversity.
Maki Arakawa
Workshop Facilitator
Immediately after entering Musashino Art University, Arakawa encountered workshops that utilizes art, design and drama. At Ruskin College Oxford (MA course) she analysed the modalities of workshops in Japan based on the theory of Public History, and published her studies in a book “Multi-Vocal-Reality: the Japanese Workshop Unveiled through Oral Records and its Past, Presence and Future” in 2004. Major specialities are workshop incubation and public history. Currently a part-time lecturer at Musashino Art Umiversity and Joshibi University of Art and Design.
Yoko Kawasaki
President, Rivernet
Complete Nagoyan. Engaged in the tea ceremony and the Japanese flower arrangement for about 38years. Runs Rivernet, translation office in Nagoya.
Kinuyo Goto
Kimono Collector
Born in Kyoto. Collector of old Kimono from the Meiji to the Taisho period. Runs free school for junior and senior high student. In charge of conference decorating section in Rivernet.
Robin Huang

Industrial designer
Associate Professor, Nagoya University of Arts and Sciences

Born in Taiwan. After graduating from National Cheng Kung University (Taiwan), Robin worked for an electronic appliances company before enrolling in the Master’s Program in Art and Design of University of Tsukuba (Japan) where he became interested in interface design. During his studies there, he received merit award from the Street Furniture design competition '90 of the Kawasaki Steel Corporation. Upon graduation, he returned to Taiwan and established his own design firm and received numerous design awards as well as serving on the Board of CIDA (China Industrial Designers Association). From 1993 to 1997, he was a lecturer at the Industrial Design Department of Da-Yeh University and a researcher for CCL(Computer & Communication Research Laboratories) of ITRI(Industrial Technology Research Institute) in Taiwan. In 1997, he enrolled in the Ph.D. Program of University of Tsukuba. Robin was one of the organizing members of ICSID (International Council of Societies of Industrial Design) ’95 Congress in Taipei and the ADC (Asian Design International Conference) ’98. His specialties are industrial design and interface design. He has worked with the IT industries in Taiwan to develop many 3C products since the 90’s. Robin was an Associate Professor at Tohoku University of Art & Design before joining Nagoya University of Arts and Sciences in 2003. He is a member of Japanese Society for the Science of Design.
Chika Kudo
Born in Yokohama, Japan, Chika holds a B.A. in History of Art from International Christian University (Tokyo), with a year abroad on exchange program at the University of Leeds in UK. As a coordinator at Japan Graphic Designers Association Inc. (JAGDA), Chika is responsible for implementing joint projects between Japanese designers and the international design community through project planning and publishing.
At the 2003 Icograda (International Council of Graphic Designers Association) World Congress Nagoya, Japan, which attracted 3,800 participants from 49 countries and regions with 40 sessions by 90 speakers under the theme VISUALOGUE, she was engaged in assisting the concept developing team, editing a wide range of promotional publications, organization of Japanese delegations to the previous congresses in Seoul 2000 and Johannesburg 2001, and coordinating speakers from around the world.
Maki Taguchi
Media Creator
After graduating from Nagoya City Arts & Craft School in design, Taguhi
worked for a company dealing with signage deisgn and shop design. In
1991, he enrolled in the design department of Aichi Prefecture
University of Arts & Music to study web design at the media room of the
university and carried out projects related to web design of exhibitions
and theaters. He has worked as a free lance designer since graduation.
From 2003-2005, he was a member of a joint project called 'N/N' which is
a group that collaborated with Nagoya University of Arts to promote the
regenration of the local communities in Nishiharu Area as well as
conducting workshops for children. Currently, he is a lecturer at Nagoya
City Arts & Craft School.
Leimei Julia Chiu
Design Producer

Director, International Design Center NAGOYA Inc.
Leimei Julia Chiu has spent most of her adult life working to help designers and students of design promote their work across national and cultural barriers. To this end, she has striven to help them achieve true cross-cultural experiences that will add to their lives and enrich their output as professionals. Born in Taiwan, raised and educated in the USA and later in Japan, Leimei has acquired a diverse cultural and academic foundation. Her areas of formal study were Mathematics, Chemistry, Linguistics, and Cross-cultural communications.

As a genuine product of multicultural education and life experiences, Leimei has made the best use of her abilities by concentrating on strategic development, execution, and consulting for design promotion around the world. Leimei serves as Director of Global Communications for the International Design Center NAGOYA (IdcN). IdcN is a multi-disciplinary joint venture between the Japanese government and a consortium of 102 corporations. It is one of the largest institutes in the world devoted to the promotion of design. In her capacity there, Leimei has instigated and acted as creative director for a multitude of design promotion projects. Her goal has always been to promote and inspire designers as individuals. This determination has led her to conceive of unique and challenging projects suited to the participants and their work. Leimei's workshops and competitions have consistently proven fruitful; those involved would certainly agree that the more demanding the project, the greater the results.

In her design promotion projects, carried out in both private and public sectors, Leimei has worked with major Japanese corporations as well as with governments and academic institutions in countries across Europe, North America, and the Pan Pacific Rim. From 1997 through 2001, Leimei acted as Vice President of the International Council of Graphic Designers Association (Icograda). A recipient of The Mainichi Design Award (jointly with the 2003 Icograda Congress 'VISUALOGUE' Planning team) and Icograda President's Award, she has served on numerous competition juries, including Red Dot Award, Brno Biennial, Design for Asia Award; and currently serves on the Jury of the Good Design Award, Japan's only overall system for evaluating and promoting design.