5/27/21: Virtual Talks with Video Activists: Dan Sandin

A screening/discussion with electronic video pioneer Dan Sandin moderated by Jason Nebergall.

Watch the full recording of this live virtual event.

Daniel J. Sandin is an internationally recognized pioneer of electronic art and visualization. In 1969, Sandin developed a computer-controlled light and sound environment, called Glow Flow, at the Smithsonian Institution and was invited to join the art faculty at the University of Illinois the same year. By 1973 he had developed the Sandin Image Processor, a highly programmable analog computer for processing video images in real time. He then worked with DeFanti to combine the Image Processor with real-time computer graphics and performed visual concerts, the Electronic Visualization Events, with synthesized musical accompaniment. In 1991, Sandin and DeFanti conceived and developed, in collaboration with graduate students, the CAVE virtual-reality (VR) theater. In recent years, Sandin has been concentrating on the development of auto stereo VR displays (i.e., free viewing, no glasses), and on the creation of network-based tele-collaborative VR art works that involve video camera image materials, rich human interaction and mathematical systems.

This screening/discussion focused primarily on the Electronic Visualization Events (EVEs) held at the University of Illinois at Chicago between 1975 and 1978. Created by Dan Sandin and Tom DeFanti, the events were a place for students, faculty, and artists to create live communal video performances, with an emphasis on Image Processing. This event featured video from the EVEs as well as a discussion with Dan Sandin.

Dan Sandin (center, with feathered hat), with other participants in live computer video performance at Electronic Visualization Event 2 in Chicago. Photo by Clark Dodsworth.

Jason Nebergall is a PhD candidate in Screen Cultures at Northwestern University. His interests include avant-garde television, video art, the late 1960s and early 1970s, and modes of resistance to rationality. He has a masters degree from the University of Chicago.



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