Evolution of Liquid Light Show Technology from 1950 to Present and Beyond

Vidicon 2020 Agenda (All times in MST)

Evolution of Liquid Light Show Technology from 1950 to Present and Beyond

Proposed by Steve Pavlovsky

The talk will be livestreamed from my studio, which features all of the equipment noted, and brief demonstrations will be given of each, along with the names of the some the pioneers and figures of each era who pushed the medium forward technologically.

Beginning with the use of the overhead projector in the 1960s, the Beats used colored liquids to project kinetic visual art often in accompaniment with music and spoken word performance. The artform evolved in the 1960 to accompany Psychedelic Rock & Roll shows, and the Light Show became a staple at all major music halls across the US, Europe, and Australia. These shows became a tour de force of projection and light technology, often incorporating multiple overheads, slides, film loops, and Lumia. In the 70s, automation took over many of the light shows in discotheques and large arenas, but the artform persisted while in the underground. The 1990s, along with raves and renewed interest in 1960s music, brought the liquid light show back into the public eye. And along with it, a new type of device: the Visual Presenter. This device took the concept of an overhead projector, but instead of a mirror and lens at the head, it instead ultized a camera. This allowed live liquids to be played and projected in real time, and on much bigger screens with more powerful digital projectors. The SD analog technology also allowed integration with all the other forms of analog video, including video synths, video feedback, and glitch boxes. As video formats and resolutions expanded, so did the availability of digital tools. The current state of the art of doing a live liquid light show involves a plethara of digital cameras, digital video switchers, video capture in to software like Resolume, and outputs to not just very high lumen projectors, but also video walls... What does the future hold? My hopes would be that an AI can watch me perform, learn from it, and then act as an assistant to take over some of the more menial duties in what is already a labor intensive show.

Steve Pavlovsky

Practical Info

11/15/2020 15:00 (America/Phoenix)
1 hour