New CVM DVD release
February 27 release
Visual Music from the CVM Archive, 1947-1986
Belson, Bute, Dockum, Engel, Spinello
images from Belson's Chakra, Bute's Polka Graph, Dockum Mobilcolor film and Belson's Mandala
Thirteen rare films featuring pre-computer abstraction, using a variety of techniques including early oscilloscope experiments, color organs, hand-drawn sound, animation drawn directly on film, painted scrolls, and optical printing. Many preserved films and new HD transfers. Films from the archive of Center for Visual Music. "We need a new kinetic, visual art form - one that unites sound, color and form." - Mary Ellen Bute, 1936.
CONTENTS + links to trailers
Barry Spinello, Sonata for Pen, Brush and Ruler (1968)
Jules Engel: Landscape (1971), Mobiles (1978) and Play-Pen (1986)
images from Engel's Play-Pen, Bute's Color Rhapsodie
From Bute’s ‘seeing sound’ to Belson’s nonobjective language, Dockum’s color organ imagery, the graphic choreography of Engel’s animation, and Barry Spinello’s hand-drawn sound and images, we present a selection of Visual Music from the CVM archive.
Bute's Polka Graph uses Schillinger's musical notation to generate the visual complement to the soundtrack, while Abstronic uses images produced from sound using an oscilloscope. Mandala is one of Belson’s first films to use mandala imagery, filmed from his painted scrolls, while according to Belson, Meditation is “a poetic, abstracted account of the meditational experience.” The Mobilcolor films document Dockum's instruments for composing and performing light as symphonies, and Spinello and Engel's films explore styles of hand drawn animation.
Contains many restored films and new HD transfers. Meditation, Chakra, and the Dockum and Engel films were restored by CVM. Engel films restored in association with NOMI Group.
DVD REVIEW at PopMatters: "Beauty in the Abstract - Visual Music 1947-1986"
NTSC, Region-free, TRT 78:30
Films are 4x3 with pillarboxing (side mattes), for 16x9 display. No windowboxing.
Produced by and (c) Center for Visual Music, 2017
FILM NOTES (in progress)
ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS
More about Jordan Belson
More about Mary Ellen Bute
More about Charles Dockum
Private home use, $30 (California residents please add 8.75% tax)
Shipping: $5 US, $8 Canada, $13 international
Also available in LONDON at the British Film Institute Southbank's Film Shop, and in JAPAN through Meditations, Kyoto and online. In PARIS through Re:Voir and Light Cone. In NZ, at the shop of the Len Lye Centre, New Plymouth.
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Center for Visual Music
PO Box 39527
Los Angeles, CA 90039
Thanks to Greta Dockum, Barbara Fischinger, Cathy Heinrich, Wiliam Moritz, Barry Spinello, Cecile Starr, Chris Harvey, and the National Film Preservation Foundation.
Many of the films are available for public screenings on 16mm or as digital files
Visit our online store for more visual music and experimental animation DVDs, including the Jordan Belson 5 Films DVD, and Oskar Fischinger: Ten Films.
Membership - Become a Member of CVM and help support our work preserving and promoting Visual Music. Vintage premiums include Fischinger, Whitney, Moritz posters, ephemera and other items.