This week, I’m attending Aaron Meyers‘ and Aaron Koblin‘s master class/workshop on visual music at Eyebeam, sponsored by our friends at visualist-friendly record label Ghostly International. (We’ll be busy coding this week, but hope to share some fruits of this week later.)

You could easily lose yourself in the wonderful Tumblr blog of inspiration and ideas being assembled by the Aarons and workshop participants, ranging from early synesthetic audiovisual experimentation to recent work:
http://visualmusic.tumblr.com/

A comprehensive history is sorely needed this area, especially as you watch the ground-breaking, expressively minimal work of people like Norman McLaren.

Among other inspiration work — in the realm of the recent, there’s the stunning, psychedelically-organic blooms of color in Takeshi Murata, top, as seen in a 2009 live performance in London.

Returning to my own childhood, folks of my (approximate) generation or those who had kids raised on Childrens’ Television Workshop will find the video below oddly familiar. It includes music composed by Philip Glass expressly for Sesame Street, set to fantastic, geometric work typical of Sesame Street’s innovative early animation. (Missing from any of the information, as the stuff linked to a sampled video, is any credit to who animated the work. The video below says, enigmatically, only “Shapes are found everywhere.” Indeed. Indeed they are. Although if you start seeing patterns like this when PBS isn’t switched on, you might want to double-check your sippy cup.

It’s a shame terrific work like this isn’t generally part of educational TV any more. I think there’s a freshness in its relative simplicity, too.

But there’s plenty of other video to watch, likely killing any productivity later today. You’re welcome.

  • http://www.adamwolinsky.com Adam Wolinsky

    I'm sure it won't be news to most people reading this blog, but I really recommend: http://www.centerforvisualmusic.org/

    I especially enjoyed LUMIA: Thomas Wilfred and The Story of Light Art and am still waiting for Richard "dr." Baily's Xtacism to be released.

    Fine inspiration to go round.

  • http://www.alphabomb.com Beebles

    Check this animation produced with Scanimate for Seasame Street (one of many):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vVktxm3p7gI

    Surprised that there were no search results for "scanimate" on CDM. It's an analog computer used to produce *loads* of animation. David Sieg (a scanimate operator who's still producing content) has a fantastic info site (with 2 DVDs available for order – mine just arrived in the post :-)

    http://scanimate.zfx.com/

  • Peter Kirn

    @Beebles: fantastic! I have to admit, I'm unclear on just how that equipment works.

  • http://www.technoetc.net/blog Andrew O'Malley

    Love the 2nd vid, a nice dose of nostalgia :)

    Looking forward to the results of this course, Peter! I'm interning @ Eyebeam this summer so perhaps we'll cross paths.

    Cheers,

    ao.

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  • http://www.bayareaglassworks.com/ Frameless glass show

    Great to view the videos…. wish i could be there too :)