LIVE A/V Trajectories

Introduction (short version) Full text [here](;xNLx;;xNLx;There are many possible historical trajectories and influences to follow. This timeline includes only few of them. Some, like Wayan Kulit, continue today as they ever were. Others have shifted their energy into other forms, and continue with us: Would we have a club scene today, without Father Castel´s inspirations ? I-Tune visualizations without Wilfred´s lumia projections? The real-time video software effects without video synthesizers ? The video synthesizers without platforms like Experimental Television Center and publications like Radical Software ?;xNLx;;xNLx;We wish to honor the creative spirits, be they visionaries, technological innovators, artists or organizers, who spent their lives in exploring with the same passion we possess in our artistic or scientific endeavors. The content was patched together from bits and pieces, images, videos, academic articles, websites found online and will keep evolving in time. The research of Fred Collopy and Kenneth Peacock provided the structural backbone. ;xNLx;;xNLx;The text sources are marked with each story. We consider them quotes and wish not to break any copyright laws. The sources of video clips can be seen by opening the clips in Youtube or Vimeo. We are very grateful to have found these texts, images and videos which others have sought out or created. We offer this timeline as a free resource and hope that will you find it inspiring and useful in your own audiovisual explorations !;xNLx;;xNLx;Mia Makela - Researcher;xNLx;Scylla Magda on behalf of AVA - Curator;xNLx;;xNLx;;xNLx;;xNLx;-----------;xNLx;;xNLx;How to use:;xNLx;We would suggest that the best way to use the timeline is either to click on the first story to open ( Emperors Adviser: Shadow Puppetry) then use the arrows at the bottom of the story to move through all 81 stories in sequence. Alternatively, click on the spanner symbol in the bottom right hand corner, choose a category, and repeat as above. Clicking on the spanner symbol will also give you viewing/spacing/zoom and search options. Or, third option, simply use the slider on the bottom of the timeline to scan through the stories until you find one that you want to open.;xNLx;;xNLx;---------------------;xNLx;;xNLx;This timeline was commission for ;xNLx;[AVA Exhibition -Seeing With Sound](;xNLx;;xNLx;Supported using public funding by ARTS COUNCIL ENGLAND

0206-06-28 11:30:10

Emperor´s adviser: Shadow puppetry 206 BC

1400-04-27 23:14:08

Fontana: Liber Instrumentorum

1590-04-27 23:14:08

Arcimboldo: Color-music system

In 1590, Gregorio Comanini describes an invention by the Mannerist painter Arcimboldo - a system for creating color-music, based on apparent luminosity instead of hue.

1645-04-27 23:14:08

Kircher: Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae

“If we were able to observe the air during a concert, while it vibrates simultaneously with the voices and instruments, we would be amazed at the colors organized and moving within it.” Athanasius Kircher

1650-04-27 23:14:08

Huygens: Magic Lantern

1664-04-27 23:14:08

Walgenstein: Magic Lanternists

1664 The first lantern showman of note, the Danish mathematician Thomas Walgenstein, journeys through Europe to Rome, conjuring up ghosts for rich nobleman and princes.

1743-04-27 23:14:08

Castel: Clavecin Oculaire

1743 Louis-Bertrand Castel, a Jesuit priest and mathematician designed and constructed a model of the first “color organ,”Clavecin Oculaire, a stringed musical instrument combined with moving transparent and colored tapes. It related seven colors to the seven whole notes of the occidental musical scale.

1743-06-27 23:14:08

Krüger: Ocular harpsichord

1743 In an essay entitled “On a new kind of music, enjoyed by the eyes” German professor Johann Gottlieb Krüger proposes a design for an ocular harpsichord in direct response to Castel’s.

1760-04-27 23:14:08

Ombres chinoises

1772-04-27 23:14:08

Seraphin´s Shadow theatre

Séraphin´s shadow theatre in Versailles and Paris 1772-1870.

1789-04-27 23:14:08

Darwin: Visual music

Englishman Erasmus Darwin suggests producing visual music by projecting light from oil lamps through colored glass.

1816-04-27 23:14:08

Brewster: Kaleidoscope

In 1816, Sir David Brewster proposed the Kaleidoscope as a form of visual-music that became immediately popular.

1825-04-27 23:14:08


The thaumatrope is usually referred to as the first in a line of optical toys that led to motion pictures.

1832-04-27 23:14:08


The phenakistoscope (also spelled phenakistiscope or phenakitiscope) was an early animation device that used a spinning disk of sequential images and the persistence of vision principle to create an illusion of motion.

1834-04-27 23:14:08


A zoetrope is one of several pre-film animation devices that produce the illusion of motion by displaying a sequence of drawings or photographs showing progressive phases of that motion.

1838-04-27 23:14:08


A stereoscope is a device for viewing a stereoscopic pair of separate images, depicting left-eye and right-eye views of the same scene, as a single three-dimensional image.

1844-04-27 23:14:08

D.D. Jameson: Colour-Music pamphlet

1849-04-27 23:14:08

F. E. Trahndorff: Gesamtkunstwerk

A Gesamtkunstwerk (translated as total work of art,[1] ideal work of art,[2] universal artwork,[3] synthesis of the arts, comprehensive artwork, all-embracing art form or total artwork) is a work of art that makes use of all or many art forms or strives to do so. The term is a German word which has come to be accepted in English as a term in aesthetics. 1849 Wagner writes about Gesamtkunstwerk.

1850-02-14 08:59:09


A harmonograph is a mechanical apparatus that employs pendulums to create a geometric image.

1869-10-02 00:14:07

Kastner: Pyrophone concerts

1869-73 Strasbourg-born musician and scientist Frederic Kastner invents the pyrophone and the ‘singing lamp.’

1872-10-02 00:14:07

Muybridge: "Motion picture"

Known as the 'father of the motion picture', Edward Muybridge's early photographic experiments laid the foundation for modern cinema.

1877-01-02 00:14:07

Reynaud: Praxinoscope

The praxinoscope was an animation device, the successor to the zoetrope. It was invented in France in 1877 by Charles-Émile Reynaud.

1877-02-02 00:14:07

Bishop: Color organ

US artist, inventor Bainbridge Bishop gets a patent for his first Color Organ in 1877.

1881-10-02 00:14:07

Le Chat noir

The cabaret Le Chat noir ("The Black Cat") in Paris produces a number of popular Ombres chinoises shows in the 1880s, organized by the artist Henri Rivière, using up to 20 assistants and a large, oxy-hydrogen back-lit performance area.

1893-10-09 13:48:02

Edison Lab: Kinetoscope

Edison Lab holds the first public demonstration of the Kinetoscope at the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences. Edison chooses not to patent it.

1893-10-09 13:48:02

Rimington:Clavier à lumières

In 1893, British painter Alexander Wallace Rimington patents the Clavier à lumières.

1895-09-28 13:48:02

Lumiere: Cinematograph Film projection

First film projection by Lumiere brothers in Paris, features live music by pianist.

1899-10-09 13:48:02

Michelson: Color Art

The physicist Albert Michelson predicts that there would develop a color art analogous to that of music in which the performer would play colors of the spectrum in any succession or combination

1909-01-09 13:48:02

Kandinsky: Color-tone dramas

1911-10-09 13:48:02

Rimington: Colour-Music:The Art of Mobile Colour

Alexander Wallace Rimington publishes his book : Colour-Music:The Art of Mobile Colour.

1912-08-09 13:48:02

Hector: Sound and color instrument

Alexander Hector designs an instrument to directly associate sound and color.

1915-06-09 13:48:02

Chromola / Prometheus

Modest Altschuler and Preston S. Millar develope the Chromola to accompany a Carnegie Hall performance of Scriabin’s symphony Prometheus, which includes score for changing colored lights. Chromola resembles Rimington's instrument.

1916-01-09 13:48:02

Ginna&Corra: Chromatic Music

In a 1916 art manifesto, the Italian Futurists Arnaldo Ginna and Bruno Corra describe their concept of chromatic sound and drama.

1916-10-09 13:48:02

Rossine: Optophonic Piano

In 1916, the Russian Futurist Painter Vladimir Baranoff Rossiné premiere the Optophonic Piano at his one-man exhibition in Oslo.

1919-10-09 13:48:02

Hallock-Greenewalt: Color organs

Between 1919 and 1927 American concert pianist Mary Hallock-Greenewalt files eleven patents, which describe a new, technological art form consisting of carefully orchestrated graduations of colored light that are the foundation of her system of visual music, which she calls “Nourathar”—a combination of Arabic words meaning “essence of light.”

1919-10-09 13:48:02

Reiniger: Silhouette animation

1919 The German animator Lotte Reiniger pioneered silhouette animation as a format, whereby shadow play-like puppets are filmed frame-by-frame.

1919-10-09 13:48:02

Wilfred: Lumia

1919 Thomas Wilfred builds his first Clavilux, Model A to play Lumia light shows live in 1922. Wilfred intends the term Lumia to refer to any art created using light, but its use is never widely adopted.Lumia is distinguished mostly by its amorphous spindly moving forms.

1920-05-30 17:42:15

Absolute film

Absolute film is a film movement begun by a group of visionary artists in Germany in the 1920s: Hans Richter, Walter Ruttmann, Oskar Fischinger and the Swede Viking Eggeling. New zealandese Len Lye is also working on the universal language of abstract form. 1927-31 Oscar Fishinger´s studies 5 through 12 are shown in theaters throughout Europe, USA and Japan.

1920-09-20 04:41:48

"Shadow woman" Benton: Shadow Theatre in USA

Traditional Chinese shadow puppetry is brought to audiences in the United States in the 1920s and 1930s through the efforts of Pauline Benton.

1922-11-14 08:59:09

Hirschfeld-Mack: Lichtspiel Experiments

Hirschfeld-Mack`s experiments with coloured light and lichtspiel grows out of his interest in colour and its psychological/spiritual effects.

1925-09-20 04:41:48

Laszlo: Color-Light-Music

In 1925, Hungarian composer Alexander Laszlo writes a text called Color-Light-Music ; Laszlo tours Europe with a color organ.

1927-05-30 17:42:15

City Symphonies

1927 Berlin: Symphony of a Metropolis, German film directed by Walter Ruttmann.The film is an example of the city symphony film genre, "new style" of early filmmaking that evolves from a script-free open narrative form that shows a view of the world free from a rigid structure for storyline.

1932-11-14 08:59:09

Ornamental Sound

1932 Oskar Fischinger’s article “Sounding Ornaments”.

1934-10-09 13:48:02

Bute: Seeing Sound

Mary Ellen Bute was a pioneer American film animator significant as one of the first female experimental filmmakers.

1935-11-14 08:59:09

Dockum:Mobilcolor Projectors

From 1935–77, Charles Dockum builds a series of Mobilcolor Projectors, his versions of silent color organs.

1939-11-14 08:59:09

Whitney brothers: Visual Music

1939 John and James Whitney produce Twenty-four Variations, their first abstract film.

1939-11-14 08:59:09

Kaleidakon light show

The centre piece of the 1939 Ideal Home exhibition in London was the Kaleidakon, what sounds like a proto-psychedelic light show.

1946-01-14 08:59:09

Hallock-Greenewalt: Nourathar book

1946 Mary Elizabeth Hallock-Greenewalt publishes a book on her invented art of "light-color playing" called Nourathar: The Fine Art of Light-Color Playing.

1950-10-09 13:48:02

Fishinger: Lumigraph

In 1950, Oskar Fischinger creates and performs the Lumigraph that produces imagery by pressing objects/hands into a rubberized screen that would protrude into colored light.

1953-11-14 08:59:09


Gordon Pask and McKinnon demonstrate the first of their Musicolour machines at Cambridge.

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