Visual Berlin Festival - The Night Program

I have found over the years that the best events are those that are born out of chaos. Coming from that conclusion I think that this years Visual Berlin Festival (formerly known as AViT2010) will be phenomenal. After a chaotic first phase of delays and planning it is now shaping up to be the VJ top event of the year. All put together by love without a budget the girls and guys over at Visual Berlin have outdone themselves to invite and promote and organize and plan a festival par excellence. From almost total breakup just two weeks ago when a big partner parted ways there is now a festival that makes sense and it got me and many others very excited.
Personally I am particularely excited about the location where it will all happen - the famous Tresor club - that is in its new home since some years but will open its full potential for the first time with a room for installations that has to be seen to be believed (and I think this is the most stunning location this town has ever seen - forget the berghain even the old ewerk). But I am getting sidetracked. Today was the day when the Night Time Schedule was finalized and made public. Since the prototypen are organizing the Basement Vault Tresor Floor for the "Breaking the Vault" party I am naturally very excited about this progress. (it took some sweat to get there let me tell you). Have a look at the fantastic audio visual lineup not only on that floor but throughout the event - its going to be very very whicked - if you are a visuals lover, a party goer, a dubstep fanatic, hanging onto 8bit tunes - there is something for everyone and its gonna be fun and massive.
I will post more things when they become available - for now have a look at the nighttime schedule:




Live Cinema Book - Open For Questions

I am currently writing a book on Live Cinema fusing all that I have learned by VJing over the last 11 years enhancing my three year old theory and trying to actually define a new media and art form. I am looking specifically to theories of storytelling, engaging audiences, keeping them interested all the while enhancing the general atmosphere and not loosing the spontaneity that VJing brings with it and tell a message.

At this point it is a very personal look at how I think Live Cinema would work. In an efford to make it easy to grasp and make the appeal broader I want to get a sense of what is actually needed to understand the medium. If enough questions that have not been answered in the main part of the book arrive I will add a Q&A section to specifically answer them.

Questions can range from the mundane to the specific - it can come from a musicians perspective or a vjs perspective or the audience perspective or an actors perspective - whatever your background please don´t hesitate to ask - the more questions the better.

You can either leave a comment here or send a mail to falk(at)

So if you have any kind of thoughts about the artform in your head that have not yet been answered please fire away - I would be very happy to incorporate and answer them.


VisualBerlin Festival
AViT 2010

June 10th-12th 2010

Licht An!

Berlin’s original Videokunst Club, VisualBerlin reflects the richness of the city itself. With members from nine countries we are a diverse family bound together by a shared commitment to the progression of audiovisual art forms, performance and technology. Our artists have rocked festivals and parties across the globe and in 2010 it’s our turn to return the favor. From June 10-12 we will host the VisualBerlin Festival, a community driven event focusing on live performance, VJing and experimental media. The festival is an excellent opportunity to connect with an engaged audience of public and peers. Share with us your passion, your creativity, your experiments and your fun. Wir freuen uns!


Founded in 2005, VisualBerlin is a non-profit community platform, providing support and a social structure for participating artists. Our interests and expertise covers everything from underground party visuals to hardware-hacking, programmatic arts, experimental performance and media philosophy. Community is at the forefront of everything we do. Since 2003 members of our group have hosted events in collaboration with AViT, the international support network for VJ arts and practitioners. In 2006 the newly-formed VisualBerlin celebrated it’s first official AViT network event and in 2010 we are pleased to continue the tradition of AViT in Berlin with the VisualBerlin Festival. The common ideals of VisualBerlin and AViT ensures that the participating artists and surrounding community is the most important aspect of each of our events.


In 2010 the Festival once again takes place in conjunction with Berlin’s international design festival DMY. Over three days, guest VJs, performers and developers will have the opportunity to present their work in Berlin’s most unique locations. These headquarters will act as a hub and meeting point for all artists with free wifi, event information, technical support and a daily breakfast club for participants.
The night program takes place in external clubs, transformed by the VisualBerlin team to offer you the best setting for your performance.


The festival will be a mix of curated programming and open-exchange. Innovative projects and developments will be presented daily across a schedule of workshops, performances and discussions. Additional jam sessions will take place in the lounge area giving you the opportunity to test out new collaborations, experiment and exchange ideas on the big screen.

The night program is split into three events:

  • Night 1, Dubstep party
  • Night 2, Chiptunes + AudioVisual Performances
  • Night 3, Classic VJ/ Closing Party.
The night slots will be curated but we welcome last-minute collaborations between artists, and look forward to closing each night with you in an open jam session

How To Participate

We will be collecting submissions for the following:

  • Workshops/Seminars
  • VJ sets
  • AudioVisual Performances
We are also planning facade mappings, so please let us know if your work is appropriate for these and you would like to stay informed.

The application form is available at

Please take care with your application and make sure you have supplied us with all the requested information. The application deadline is April the 30th, 2010.


Toronto Visual Dub

Brian T. Moore created this installation piece from footage he shot in Toronto mixed over audio that was composed by my dub hero Saetchmo from sound snippets recorded also in Toronto all with a little bit of help from me. Enjoy. Official home for the video here.


INiT Live Toronto Canada 06/13/09

init_pre_back_sm.gifI am invited to hold the keynote speech at the Live Cinema Festival INiT Live in Toronto Canada as well as showcase Kalkin:Revelation. While I am over there I am also holding a talk at the Canadian Film Center about Live Cinema.

More Information can also be found on the proto.beamaz site.

There will be live twittering from the event under the #init09 tag.


Vivace portable music studio - Most Awesome Controller Interface

vivacemusicstudio.jpgThe search for midi/osc controllers knows no limits around the world as everybody is struggling to get some manual control to the thousands of virtuals knobs and sliders and buttons. There are lots of wild tries to cram as many buttons in as portable rigs as possible. I think that most people would agree that there is nothing out there that is perfect. A step closer (until Apple frees us from the controller nightmare with a fully dual multitouch display or such) come the designers Young-Shin Lee & Hae-Jin Jung. They simply made a whole new computer that is just designed to be a musical instrument. I actually think they have something - if it would be ultra cheap and could be used as just a controller. I know that VJs would probably love it - imaging having a second screen with you loops and some nifty controller and some multitouch action and a keyboard in addition to your usual setup.

More info here.
More pics here.


Watch the Watchers Do Their Dirty Work

3-22-09-taser-axom-system.jpgTASER International teams with to create the AXON a secure police recording system that is fully portable and strapped on the head. Now there is multiple things going on here why this is noteworthy. For one it sends (streams?) the data directly to the servers of in an encrypted secure way. That means nobody (also not the cops themself) can temper the footage. That means it could be an effective tool to watch the watchers and make them accountable for "mistakes" that might happen when an arrest or house search or such is being made. That of course would mean that makes the videos available to the public at large but I think this might be even a business model for them so I actually do seem to think this is likely. Now there needs to be a law that prohibits the nice policemen from turning these things of in the heat - make it a felony punishable with a prison sentence or immediate suspension from the job to avoid the "oh I forgot to turn it back on" kind of moments that these fellow friends would likely have at times.

Now that this is covered I would like to raise a voice that this whole system needs to make it to the general market for everyone and the next best VJ to wear all day. Imagine not having to worry about how long the memory stick in your pocket has capacity but instead you can record you whole day onto a server of your choosing (probably your own home server for the more intimate moments) all wirelessly and you wear just a black blob over your ear - no fugly sunglasses or baseballcaps or fake eyes or such - yes that clearly means I WANT ONE :) but I am sure the bright people at Taser int. have figured that out already and present us a mass market version (probably sans encryption so to give back big brother what has been taken from him).

via engadget


Kutiman ThruYou Youtube CutUps - feat. our own Bastai ;D

I was just pointed by captain mulda who is our new flyer designer to these amazing cutup videos - and the original reason for the journey to ThruYou was that our own MC Bastai is featured in one of the videos. The idea of the cutup videos is to take lots of different youtube videos with soundsamples in them and cut them up and remix them into one continuous new song. Bastai features in the fitting dubby song all complete with multiple dub sirens and some other really strange music gear from another dimension.

Be sure to check out the other creations with different music styles in the above link.


Modbook Pro: Multifingertouch Tablet not made by Apple

You know I get quite the heat in the comments for daring to criticize Apple over their lack of innovation in the Pro sector lately. Yes I was wishing for a widespread adoption of multitouch - you know something radical. I know multitouch works great not only for pros or live artists but for everyone and the conservative stand by Apple to not include it yet.
Now Axiotron comes back to the scene after already converting the plastic MacBooks into tablets they are now converting MacBookPros into finger multitouch tablets as well. For $5000 its yours. Gosh that would actually be a nice thing for VJing. Except for the glossy screen that then is not only glossy but also smeary. Now why apple aint doing it is beyond me - it cant be the smeary screen as they have no problem with glossy which is about as bad as smeary.

Read more about it over at Boy Genius. Thanks Tom for the headups.


Deep from the Adobe Labs - Stuff we will likely never see?

Its rare that you get a peek into research development of a big software company but Adobe is pursuing a more open path lately with a high profile blog that spills some inside beans and now some researches allowed to put their pet projects on youtube some video sharing site. Now the stuff they are developing is insanely great but the guy ended a totally let down statement "I can´t guarantee that any of the stuff you are seeing is making it into adobe products". Anyway they seem to have found the holy grail of motion tracking if anything that the movie shows is an indication. The part with the two people in the woods and a million trackers are totally stuck to creases on their grey sweaters must be the best motion estimation out there and it seems to work in almost realtime, it can differentiate between different objects and is 2.5D at least (I would venture to guess to get the different objects it has to be actually a 3D tracker). Adobe would be well advised to put out well working easy to use realtime 3d tracker on the market - but then they have to watch out - they might be bought out by the Autodesk 3d monster.

Interactive Video Object Manipulation from Dan Goldman on Vimeo.


Playing virtually in Toronto the aftermath

As reported mogreens and me had a special kind of gig in Toronto last saturday. We splitted our souls and uploaded them through the clogged tubes to reassemble our creative output over there. Well it worked in so far that the signal arrived but its no hiding that there where issues with our limited upload bandwidth and a portforwarding problem with the audio made it necessary to send the audio over the internal microphone and a separate very chunky iChat connection. I want IPv6 and multicast or a working bittorrent streaming protocol - everything else just sucks. But in the end it was a very worthwhile experiment with a high learning factor and one that we will get deeper into in the very near future - stay tuned.
Thanks goes out to Brian T. Moore who made it all possible.

Live Cinema?

Just stumbled over this. Thought it is kind of amazing that the term showed up in 1987 - never knew but you never stop learning I guess - music is of course taste but me as almost 80s kiddy tends to not dislike it.


Apple Display Port and the Analog hole

The more I read and think about it I think there is a big issue with the new display port that Apple is trying to put under the rug. They want to plug the analog hole once and for all. I think its not only to do with copyright shit - so I am reasonably believe that is one of the bigger underlying issues - its also the floppy drive issue. Uh? Yes I am actually of the generation where apple removed the floppy drive without asking anybody. A huge outcry and then a year later people applauded them for the move - you know there was nothing really nice about floppy drives and cd burners where just better and looking back it was one of the smarter moves for apple - pushing the whole industry forward - for the few that needed a floppy drive they could just attach one through USB - sure for them it was the more expensive road but it must have been a tiny minority - I know for myself that I never looked back to the floppy era again.
Fast forward eight years later and Apple brings out a Laptop that for the first time is missing any way to connect analog video to it. Mind you I am a VJ and the only way to do our thing is through analog video cables - but also I am vfx professional and go into any professional video studio these days and have a hard look around and I promise you - you won´t find any kind analog video anywhere anymore. Now also the projectors that do not have a digital video input option of some sort also seem to have died out. So in quite general I would say that yes its a move that from a very very far perspective makes sense on Apples part - ditch analog video and the world sees innovation an crisper pictures and maybe soon wireless digital pictures. Now there is only one big big problem with that thinking and I can see that Apple is not seeing that angle - because they rarely come into contact with it - the whole event bussiness needs to bridge ultra long distances with video cables and as of right now the only digitial standard that can bridge 50+ meters is digital SDI - a very professional option that almost no beamer under $5000 on the market supports nor does apple have a video out solution for that either - especially not on their portable laptop line. I am sure with budgets above 10.000 Euro per event you can cook up a all digitial solution already but this is not the market where 95% of events are in - also the whole backend has not switched to an digital format either - unlike the Floppy that was already replaced by the CD burner and shortly later by the USB flash drives - there is no standard in the video world for digital video. It starts with the cables, goes to compression and codecs through framerates and resolutions - there are about a trillian combinations and no market standard has prevailed so far. So forcing a switch over from analog to digital video at the moment is not a clever idea - no matter what your motivations are - and when half your motivations are bad already (DRM evil evil DRM) then this switch is going to alianate a LOT of people - even if the event market might only make up 0.5% of Apples laptop buying population I think people needing analog video still at this moment approach more 5% (old beamers, old TV sets, bars wanting to show a video etc. pp) and that is a huge chunk. I am quite sure Apple has to come out with a native adapter at one point. The current solution when you ask an Apple employee? Get an old DVI to video adaptor and get minidisplayport to DVI adaptor and chain them together - very elegant Apple - very professional - very reliable such an adaptor chain. BTW - just 3 years ago you could just plug a SVHS cable right into your powerbook without any kind of adaptor - apple used to be about simplicity - these days seem to be waning.


Saturday: History in the making - playing a live VJ/DJ set in your living room while halfway across the world people dance to it

mediaJam1122_invite4.jpgThis saturday we are undergoing a big big experiment - something very very unique - something that saves a lot of CO2 - something that could change the face of parties around the world... got your attention? great :)

MoGreens and my lowly self (proto.beamaz:fALk for the search engines) will be playing a VJ/DJ (or A/V as it might be called in some cirlcles) gig in Toronto/Canada. But instead of flying over there trying to cope with jetlags and the pretty torontonian girls we are safely in the prototypen office using the intertubes to forward our signals to the crew around Brian Moore who are doing their awesome media jam in the coolest property of all Toronto.
Since we can´t stream to more then one computer because in the year 2008 there is still no universal multicast or streaming bittorrent protocol (that works on a mac (so I heard swarmplayer is shaping up nicely)) the only way to experience the awesomeness of a the first and only real global party (massmedia induced Bono concerts don´t count) is to go to it live - either to Toronto for the full bang loud social event at 9 oclock in the evening or come to the near Berlin for a relaxed chilled friends circle atmosphere at 4 oclock in the morning - your choice - but I am sure you don´t want to miss it either way.

Saturday November 22nd 2008

411 Front Street East Toronto /Canada
9:11 pm EST
& Kleinmachnow(Berlin) /Germany
4:00 am CET


Analog AudioVisuals - no really really analog

VisibleSound1.jpgThis sewing machine sews in soundwave patterns. Whicked - now you can wear your own songs. Maybe a good machine to get when Apple continues to cripple its hardware.


The vOICe - seeing with sound for the blind

11seeing.450.jpgThe vOICe is a system that takes the input of a camera that is hidden in some eyeglasses and maps that signal into sounds. This is then fed to earphones and is supposed to enable blind people to "hear pictures". Its supposed to actually work - blind people are capable of learning to hear pictures and oriantate themselfes in 3d space with this system. Its like a learned synesthesia (fusion of two or more sensory inputs in the brain). This quite possible means that people are capable of learning synesthesia mappings. Quite mind boggling.

Articles also in the New York Times and BBC News.


Red Announces 28k camera - and a a trillion other options

redExplode.pngSo last night was the big announcement of the RED digital cameras and did they announce. They basically turned the whole movie making industry on its head, poured pure caffein on them then splashed some more cold water - rinsed and repeated a couple of times. Some users are speculating that they raided Area 51 in the night and stole a camera chip from the UFO there and reverse engineered it. Why? Well there is for one the insanely expensive far off big bambooza of a 28k Monstro chip. You know the most high definition films that are going through post production are 4k with I think Batman for the IMAX topping it with 6k. Now how you would sufficently post produce a 28k movie is beyond me - also beyond me is why you would such foolish thing - but you know you can crop, zoom, pan later and still have 4k. But why I am much more exited is the modularity approach and this might not just be a game changer in the camera business but maybe even the computer biz. Imagine Apple sold 2-3 different enclosures for laptops and you can fit a wide range of gear in them - pretty much plug and play. New motherboard, new processor, new graphic card, new display, different keyboard. Well this is pretty much what red is doing for their cameras - yes you can switch out a 2/3rd, 12bit, 11+ stops sensor and replace it with a super 35mm 16bit 13+ stops sensor later, when you made the money or whatever. Also of course you can change anything else, batteries, outputs, lenses, handles, screens, shoulder mounts whatever. Oh and for the added bonus: it can do 3d too (with two cams that fit together nicely for that option). Now they are not hitting quite home the original goal of 3k camera that works out of the box for $3.000, but the smallest brain (or body) is $2.500 - for about $5000 you should be able to assemble a working unit. Its very revolutionary stuff they do over at RED. Since delivering the REDone nobody doubts their ability to deliver these two new camera systems either. Its just a bit late - don´t expect to hold any of the new ones in your hands before fall next year (thats a year away). Now its going to be more then interesting what the big shots like sony, panasonic, canon and nikon are doing (and hasselblatt) this invades their turf big time.

For more info (or info overload might be better) head over to the REDdot.


proto.beamz:fALk Saturday Waschhaus Potsdam

flyer_2008-11-15_polyphon.jpgAfter a very long abstinence from doing the normal club gig thingy I was persuaded to play this Saturday for my friends from the Polyphon -> Impulse Potsdam collective who are doing parties again after a long abstinence too. The thing that caused me to agree to play was the kind of music they are playing - DubStep - the new electronic music hype on the block. Fusing Dub, DrumNBass and Electro and about anything else that fits - what would you want more. So if you are so inclined - come around the bend my friend and say hello to Potsdam dying clubculture.


ReConstitution - Live Remixing of Presidential Debates

I must have missed this but these guys are doing a cool thing. They take video audio and text streems of the presidential debates while they are happening and remixing them live on stage in a "news commentator" like setting - only that they are just talking with pictures. Without music its bound to be not so energetic as the ReVolution08 movie from Coldcut a couple of days ago - but their approach is at least as relevant. Its like a live audiovisual commentary that puts the spotlight of the event to subtleties that you wouldn´t see if you just saw the TV version. And what I also love about them is that they stress the live character of their event not even attempting to make a recorded version available - some things are just better live I guess.

Here is their trailer:

ReConstitution 2008 - Live Presidential Debates Remix by Sosolimited from Sosolimited on Vimeo.


Toronto VJ Jam courtesy of commandN

When I was in Toronto for the blinkenlights project I meet up with Brian T. Moore - one of the local VJs and a heck of a community organizer there. He put on a VJ Jam in his awesome residence and invited the vjs of Toronto to play. I was honored to play there too. CommandN is a local video podcast that has shot the show - even so they did some factual mistakes (like calling me mr blinkenlights) they still pulled off quite a nice episode about the event. And the heavy psychedelic visuals across Brians face where an exception. Just before the interview there was about the best collaborative mix (together with one of the lead programmers for Houdini - whos name I forgot but I will write about his selfwritten "VJ" software that he developed for Pixar) on that screen that I have ever attended. Sadly that part has not made it into the podcast.

revolution08 best video - ever

I looked over it when it appeared on mogreens blog, but then clicked on the play link and was blown away. This must rank as one of the best mash up videos of all times. And its more - this has the possibility to be played live. If you are a vj and you are using samples - take notice of this video. Its would be Live Cinema at its best: Message, Story Line, Style, Energy. Did I say it fucking rocks?


Die Verstärker Lecture Sunday 26. October 2008

verstarker.pngI will give my Live Cinema Lecture on Sunday at 13:45 at the "Die Verstärker" music conference and fair at the e-werk in Erlangen / Germany. The Lecture will be a bit shorter then usual (I hope) clocking in at one hour and in return might be more digestable for the short attention span croud. I will give the talk in german as this will be a 99% german audience. After my talk fRED and some visual Berlin people will talk about VJ networks. Also there is a a "state of the art a/v" talk and "how to produce your own loops" workshop going on in addition to lots of copyright/left and more music orientated lectures. You can get more information prices etc. at the Die Verstärker website.


Blinkenlights: VDMX Finalized Layout

I have now finalized my setup and am testing for tonight. I am going with 4 layers. Two of those are what I call "story" layers - mostly video content telling the stereo love story. One layer is rythm loops and typography and the 4th layer is a special "pixel perfect" layer that maps pixel by pixel to the house - so I can adress specific windows without any antialiasing around them. There is one custom plugin that makes all the right connections to the house and lets me readress the output to specific screens on the house and lets me turn off one of the two buildings individually (to compensate for the mirror effect). Also there is a "blink" plugin that cycles through the screen and turns them on and of one after each other.

All in all I produced 220 fresh loops just for the house and repurposed 90 of my old loops (mostly rythm stuff) in just over a week. I don´t know if the story will come through because some of the story loops are just not working on the low resolution but I will make sure it all looks pretty tonight...

I would be more then happy for any feedback after the event.

Blinkenlights: The Test in Video

VJTestingHandsCool.jpegThe cheaky buggers filmed me last night without me noticing :) Look at it - its very small part of what you gonna get tomorrow. BTW I didn´t even have a contrast or brightness control in the test setup (besides Tim mentioning that on the blog) - but it helps to have tested on the house with a bad gamma curve the days before to know what works and what not.


Blinkenlights: Live Broadcast Test Successful

blinkenlighttest2.JPGblinkenlighttest2_2.JPGYesterday I was able to conduct the first real live test from the plaza in front of the house wirelessly live to the house and it was bombastic. While inside the headquarter on 4th floor West Tower got my mood a bit down because I couldn´t really see what I was playing couldn´t really sense how the visuals would come through - basically I was thinking nothing works its all doomed. Yet down in front of the building I found a massive lovely vibrant reactive fast screen that worked with 80% of my prepared footage. All my ideas for effects where working, the software hardware side worked and I was massively pleased and could rest well.

Now all thats left for me is making "some" more rythm loops and making my software setup stable and usable (hey I got more then 24 hours for that so p-l-e-n-t-y of time).

Thanks goes out so far to the amazing hard and software gurus in the crew - without them nothing would be possible.

I am going to post some pictures here later (hopefully)...


Blinkenlights: After Debug Screen UpperWest Works

After long debug nights with multiple reflashings of 200 dimmers and only chaotic pixels last night was the big moment where the first of four screens starting to work as intended. On the first picture you see the first homogeneous pixels array on Upper West Screen - the second picture shows a letter loop directly from within VDMX (its originally from my Biometric Passport LoopCast).

Blinkenlights: Content Creation Tools released

BlinkenCreationTools.pngWe have now a whole array of content creation tools for the Blinkenlights house available. There is still one missing that I hope the Coding Monkeys downstairs will be able to pull off in time - its one where you can convert video loops directly into .bml files that can be played on the house - in the meantime so there are already available an extensive set of plugins for Apples Quartz Composer, The classic Blinkenpaint in the Stereoscope Paint edition and an enhanced Simulator with a record function. You can get the apple centric collection here.
Also there is now a Processing Library available. For those not familiar with Processing - its a Programming language for interactive media installations and with the processing blinkenlights library you are able to make programmable animations cross platform.

As said there is still more to come - also for the video peeps out there.


Blinkenlights: Broadcasting from Kleinmachnow/Germany to Toronto/Canada and beyond

beamaztoBlinkenLightsTheFirstContact.pngTomorrow I will be leaving to London and then from there on Monday to Toronto. But before I even arrive we have managed to send some packets over there - packets of the electronic type that is.
My favorite VJ programm VDMX has gotten a Quartz Composer implant that in turns has a custom programmed implant that takes an input image and sends it out a as a blinkenstream to a proxy server. This proxy server can then be listened to by anyone with an internet connection - so to you or the guys in Tonronto (The CodingMonkeys of SubethaEdit fame - who are hard at work programming the iPhone app at the moment).
This all goes straight out of VDMX without anything in between - very sweet - vjing directly to the world so to say. I must say that this has prompted a bit of a shift in my perception of the artform - I will reflect about that after I am back from Toronto - I think its quite awesome.

As soon as there is an official version of the program that displays the data stream (mid next week) and an official proxyserver (tomorrow?) I will post it here - so you can watch what's on the towers or me practicing (not that much fun I guess)...
I will also post the plugins for quartz composer straight when I have arrived in Toronto.
this blog will see a new Category called "Blinkenlights" for those who are interested in my updates on the project over the course of the next 3 weeks. All quite exiting.

Of course there is also the official Blinkenlights Blog for more current information...


Stereoskope - A Blinkenlights Installation


The word is officially out so I can talk about it publicly. Project Blinkenlights is awakening again and its bigger and more badass then ever. The Blinkenlights crew will turn the Toronto City Hall in Toronto/Canada into the biggest-analog-lowres-giant-dual-screen on earth. As seen before in Berlin and Paris every window will turn into a pixel with 16 steps of brightness and sustaining an impressive 30 frames per second picture feed across two buildings. Classic computer games, crazy controllers (*cough*iPhone*cough*Wii*cough*), love-letters and a custom tailored live VJ performance on the houses are all in play.

For the VJs out there is maybe of interest that a lot of the picture making process is driven through quartz composer - there will be even an official blinkenlight quartz composer plugin soon. That means not only can you preview your graphics in quartz composer to see how they look on the house (3d is in the works) but you can actually use quartz composer to stream videos to the blinkenserver that is then serving them to the house (30fps I mentioned right?).

The installation will light up mid-end september and stay on for about 2-3 weeks.
As mentioned I will do a live performance on the houses on the 4th of October - the night of the Nuit Blanche. Standing on the Nathan Philips Square in front of City Hall with music and all.

There will be a live stream of the feed that goes to the house and stay tuned here as I will be "live blogging" as much of the installation setup and tryout as my time permits. Its whicked and monumental and I am proud to be on the Blinkenlights team.

(thanks Tim for putting trust in me).

The official website.
The official blog

FaderFox - the ultimate Midi Controller Solution

DJ2_front_1.jpgI have been looking for years to get a "perfect" midi controller for my live visual endeavors. That is no exageration. I have high expectations toward a midi controller. I want to lug it around the world - so it has to be small enough. I want to a plethora of functions on it so it actually helps me perform and is not just a gimmick. It has to be robust to withstand outdoor gigs with sandy gusts and water spray as well as indoor gigs sweat dropping from the ceiling and 80°C heat from above lamps. It has to be scalable and adaptable to new software coming along and it somehow has to fit my own style of performing - which means the knobs need to be properly soldered on - the faders have a solid feel and the buttons been tested to withstand 1.000.000 times pressing.

I have been impressed with the Mawzer concept two or three years ago because it was poised to deliver on that promise. Yet the final product they came up with is much less extensible and much more expensive and much bigger then what was originally proposed - the midi controller for everyone it was not. So I was looking up on building your own. There are kits out there and with access to lasercutters through the web that looked like a good alternative. There was only one problem - someone would have needed to shower me with some time to make such a project feasible. Soldering, testing building rebuilding a midi controller is - no matter how good the kit you are bying - a task of months. Sure you have the perfect controller in the end for your needs but the time to get there I would rather spend on creating content that looks whicked.

Then along came a project (next blog entry in a minute) that requires to leave my trusty videomixer (an edirol V4 1st generation) at home because it ain´t going through the old route of outputting digital video through an analog cable back to a digital projector - but instead it goes digitally over the air directly to the very analog output. So the only piece of hardware that gave me direct access to my output outside of the laptop I have to toss out for that even - and since the event is quite big and lot of focus will be on what I am doing a replacement for that loss had to come.

But lets make a little detour. Some might ask "oh you have the laptop as input controller". Yes thats true and while I use the keyboard of the laptop extensively and I can feel blind where the cursor is when using the trackpad there are still some things that are not fast enough using the computer. For example changing the speed of a video clip. There is just nothing that allows you to quickly do that - quickly as in "make decission in one beat of a 120bpm clip and have the speed change at latest at the 4th beat or next downbeat". For that direct control is absolutely necessary.

So I had another information scavenging on the interwebs to see if there is any solution to my controller need. I looked at all the ones that are used by vj friends. Cheap ones, expensive ones. I tried to imagine using them and always came up with shortcomings. Most are just too big with too little functionality - not one would fullfill all my needs in one piece. I need Trigger pads, Sliders, Knobs, Rotaries and lots of them - like LOADS of them and as said in a small package to travel. I almost gave up seeing myself trying to move the mouse cursor in unmatched fashion to some crappy output.
Then I stumbled over faderfox. I don´t know how I got there and its even a german company - I have missed them all those years. Apparently they are very well known in the tracktor/live world of musicians - I jut had never seen someone using one of the controllers they offer nor have I ever stumbled across their website.

Their website at first put me off a bit - as you might have noticed in the beginning paragraph - I need some serious professional gear. I just don´t want anything to break half way through a performance. Things need to be sturdy and the knobs and faders and buttons of exceptional quality to not loose that great break in the music that might make a difference for the feel of a whole performance. So a website that looks like its done in the mid 90s and never been updated makes me suspicious as of the professionalism - yet in my midi research I found out already that the midi hardware guys don´t have a great sense of astethics when it comes to websites (doepfer anyone?). Also on their front page was something that was so ultimately intriguing that no bad design could ever throw me off before I figured out more.

What I saw was a modular midi controller concept of ultra small units that are made for ultra portability. And on top I could figure out instantly that all I need in control ever is there in a maximum of five units - with three units already controller heaven. I googled a bit more and found out that people who bought them liked them and where impressed with their professional feel. They are even running battery powered and three of them are not wider then a typical apple pro lappy. Also the DJ2 unit they offer pretty much replaces all the controllers of my Eridol V4 videomixer. So I ordered one.

The order was processed with human kindness (yes a person on the other end - seemingly the developer himself) and delivered in outstanding speed (next day after money arrived). But what I got blew all my expectations. Not only was the controller everything that was advertised - lightweight, professional build quality - faders as solid as they can be - but it was way more versatile then I ever thought. You know you look at a controller and see all the buttons and your mind maps them to functions, but this controller crams more functions in his small space then most other controllers I have looked at 10 times its size. Buttons are all dual configurable with the shift button - that means there are 36 button messages you can get out of the controller, the xy joystick (which ist sooo smooth) can send on four different channels - switchable in a nanosecond, the two rotary controller send out continuus data on 12 different channels and notes on four and have a "push down" event on eight channels. All Sliders and knobs can be muted to avoid jumps on the controlled buttons by holding down the shift key. Everything works flawlessly after a week of testing (so the rotaries are not supported by VDMX yet (nor by quartz composer) which sucks) and its a lot of fun using. There is a (chainable in case you get more controllers from them) poweradapter coming as extra add on, it all supports midi chaining and midi through. Batteries are included and are supposed to hold 80 hours (so through the longest club session ever if you are so inclined). I can recommend this whole heartly to anyone out there - especially vjs - looking for that perfect transportable midi controller with more control then the mind allows. The price - so it does seem steep for such a "small" thing - is fully warranted.


Chaos Radio Express on Funkwelle FM with fALk

chaosradio_express-logo-192x192.jpgI just had a very good but exhausting 2 hour interview for Chaos Radio Express hosted by Tim Pritlove. The interview was about the history of live audio visual art and my take on it in todays time. What Tim didn´t tell me before that it was also broadcasted live over the ether on Funkwelle FM - a one month local Berlin radio station sending from the tower of a church on the PrenzelBerg. You can hear it over at the chaos radio podcast or through the radio prototypen podcast in the next few days. I think it is informative and gives a good overview where we the VJs have come from and where I personally want to go - it definitely raises awareness to our artform - which I think is still very important. I would love to hear any kind of feedback or correction or additions to things I said during the time.


Brain-Computer Interface

nia_angle.jpgOCZ - a modder company selling overclocking and cooling devices normally - has introduced a computer brain input interface. No its not an "coming soon product" it is apparently available to buy pretty much now for a mere US $147,00. The devices detects brainwaves, facial muscle movements and eye muscle movements to enhance your input possibilities. There is a great writeup from hothardware using it and reading that makes me very itchy. This could very well be a great additional solution to some input woes with complex programs - especially complex programs that need fast reaction time or programs were you need to push more buttons at once then you have fingers. Like VJ programs for example... Sadly the device is Windows only at the moment and mostly aimed towards gamers. But I expect this to become a common form of input if it is really working as described in the article.


Kalkin:Revelation 0.5b @ Lauter Festival

kalkinLauter08.pngYes the project is still on defrost and with an amazing change of code in my VJ program of choice - VMDX - its now actually much closer to what I envisioned - its kicking fast (finally full 25 fps+) dancing to the beats and propping superior visual quality. Together with a DJ set that has been talked about in very depth with DJ Jóse before the performance and a festival location that is sported in the beginning of the film and fRED kicking it with me this will be for me a very exiting event. The performance will be around 11:00 pm at the prototypen stage.

The entrance fee for the whole festival will be 15 Euros and entrance opens at around 4:00 pm.

More information on the festival on the Lauter website. If you happen to be around I would be happy to hear your comment - oh and pray for good weather ;)


Announcing μ:avit at DMY

Visual Berlin + DMY = AVITs!
Flux from visualberlin.orgjust notified me on the upcoming micro mini avit berlin - for the first time in conjunction with the DMY.


"Since the successful AVIT>C23 in December 2006 we’ve been looking for opportunities to continue our Berlin vj conferences. With the Chaos Computer Club we’ve been in tents in the summer and underground in the winter. Now in the form of DMY, a crew who organizes annual design tradefairs and exhibitions around the city and beyond, we have a partnership that should allow us to go even further.

VisualBerlin participated at DMY in 2007 and it worked out really well. This year DMY is hosting video installations and VJ showcases curated by VisualBerlin and we have decided to organize a one-day mini VJ conference alongside the festival - the microAVIT at DMY. For 2009 the micro will change into a macro and we are already making plans for a big AVIT event…"

Read more over here. Or head over to the main site at

Video of how to DIY a multitouch interface

Well we all know what good stuff you can do with a multitouch interface. The only problem is that there are not many commercial versions out there and the DIY versions that have been presented before a re HUGE installations rather then "take it with you" projects. The movie below shows you how to make a small multitouch box to take with you on the road.


Björks trippy Wanderlust video Red/Green 3D

bjoerkwanderlustin3d.pngWired hosts Björks Wanderlust Video with a Red/Green 3D effect. Its quite a psychadelic treat for those evenings where you need a trip to a different planet.

Get it here. (a Quicktime for a change)

Also in 2d and a making off on the same page...


The PenVideoCamera

SpyCam.gifWell I have this orphaned category called "personal spyware" for times when you need to do any counteract surveillance. Today I found something very worthy to put in this drawer again. Digital Cowboys Spy Camera Pen. Thats a pen with a camera (obviously). The pen is fully functioning as a pen too (duh) it also sports a build in USB connector to just transfer over those nasty videos of the guy that just sold you a contract that ripped you off. Good to show the kids to learn on how not to do business... ;) Oh and you can take the mini tiny camera module out of the pen and use it on its own (like put it on a helicopter and make cool arial videos as this is light enough to be fitted on those ultra cheap mini helis?

The translated (from Japanese) product page


Wonders of Magnetic Ink

magInk_00.jpgThis guy from flight 404 is playing around making animation with magnetic ink. The images look stunning to say the least they have incredible detail in them and apparently there will be videos forthcoming where the ink intereacts with music.

More on the project here:"


Kraftwerks 15 minute Autobahn Trip

I didn´t know that Kraftwerk commissioned a 15 minute psychadelic trip video for their Autobahn song made by Roger Mainwood. Sporting a green artificial lifeform and a lot of the techniques of Fischinger & Co... lovely monday watch.


HoloDeckCube coming near you

A Dutch comany called HoloCube starts marketing a similar called Device that lets you project movies in thin air. Its about 20 inch and geared towards the 3d advertising market (why? because it probably costs lots of mo and therefore the advertising market is the only market it could survive on). Expect StarWars HD quality holograms at your next fair visit. But don´t put you hand in one of these or they might get beamed to a 3rd dimension. (oh and of course in the video below you can NOT see the 3d effect as the video itself is only 2d! so just imagine the videos floating in air - if you believe the company. It must be the hardest thing to market anything "3d" with 2d mediums.)


Record high quality MP4 without a Computer for cheap

VideoCaptureHW_large.jpgI normally don´t like to comment on products in general but I know that some fellow VJs have this big problem and this is just the perfect solution. The problem? Recording a 1+ hour set.

There are some solution already available but they are all bad, but lets recap them

1. Recording to a DV Camera
The Good:
• Good quality
• small formfactor

The Bad:
• Expensive equipment
• Camera record head has limited live span and if you record a two hour set every week the camera will last about 4 month
• maximum record time per tape 120 min with reduced quality 90 minutes full dv quality
• for further distribution you have to digitize the stuff back in (loosing 90 minutes in the meantime)

2. Recording with a DVD Recorder
The Good:
• dvd recorder are quite cheap
• you have a dvd in your hand in the of it

The Bad:
• I have to see one DVD recorder that just works
• heavy basstly music will make the lens jump and leaves you with a broken DVD and mostly no way of recovering you footage - this happens VERY frequently
• putting it on the web (gooTube) requires you to rip the dvd - a long process.

3. Recording to a spare Laptop
The Good:
• Full Quality/Codec/Format Control
• you have it on a harddrive and can just copy move it around recode it whatever

The Bad:
• EXPENSIVE who has earned the money to get a spare laptop to do just video recording - a raise of hands please
• Takes up lots of space
• cable mess
• spilled drinks

As we can see all these solutions are far from perfect and mostly stop gap measures to find a truly portable, cheap recording medium. Well a company that I once had a lot of love for but then got bought up by AVID and since then has not putting out much of interest has the perfect device. The company I am talking about is Pinnacle - people who have done video editing in the late 90s probably know it. They used to produce professional capture cards and computer/video stuff of high quality. Their new product is called - rather unispiring - the PINNACLE VIDEO TRANSFER. Its geared towards consumers but is just the perfect thing for the VJ warrior. It has video/audio inputs (S-Video, Composite-Video und Stereo-Audio) and a USB port. You feed it the video and connect a Harddrive of USB2 flavor or a PSP or an iPod or an Memory Stick on the USB port and it record you video to this massstorage of your choice as an MPG4 in a user customizable quality up to 720x576 25fps (full pal video (or NTSC if that is what you need). The thing without a drive costs kidney saving 129,00 Euro or as a bundle with a western digital USB2 harddrive you get it for 199,00 Euro.

The Good:

• Storage only limited by the Connected Harddrive (1TB of MPG4 should get you about a week of footage)
• Small formfactor
• relatively cheap
• portable
• relatively high Quality (better then MPG2 DVD for sure! Not quite DV but close)
• little failure rate (especially when used with an SSD Drive or Memory stick -> no bass-moved heads jumping around)

The Bad (oh there always has to be one):
• Converting it to something else is about as painful as converting a DVD
• Converting it to something else is bringing you some bad quality loss

But since no one does DVDs anymore anyway you just set to the quality you need for your website and there you go no need for conversion ;)

This is what a VJ should have in its bag if she wants to record their sets - the ultimate solution for now.

You can get more information here and buy it here

Step Across The Border - very interesting title anim

Step Across The Border is a documentary about the rock guitar improvisor Fred Frith. I have not watched the whole documentary(full movie in the link) yet but the open sequence seen below on the YouTube snippet of the film rocked me deeply. Brilliant typographic play in a very vj like manner.


Drunkenbass: iPhone records highdef video

Well if you didn´t like the iPhone until now you might start liking it as someone has hacked the thing to record video -> with the full resolution of the camera -> thats 2.9 megapixels of video or roughly HDV resoltion. No word on compression algorythm, codec but at the moment the app can record at 10fps and when finished at 45fps! Thats more then any kind of camera below 5000 Euro can do at the moment (in that resolution with that framerate). Somehow the iPhone just became cheap.
The restraining factor is the onboard memory with just 8 GB its only 5 seconds of fun at the moment. has the link to the Drunkenbass for your unlocked iPhone to record video at extreme resolutions. If anyone has an iPhone please tell me if this is uncompressed?!!

UPDATE: Link above links to correct article now!


Funky Forest: Virtual Reality with eco shic for children

funkyforestangle.jpgImmersive Environments get more and more press over the years, as they finally become more rich and interactive. Its not only the "Goggle 3D thing" anymore its also blackboxes. One of the funkier ones I have seen and one that serves to teach children a bit about tree growth (namely that they need water to grow ;) and is generally great looking is Funky Forest. Children can create trees with their bodies, divert water with handmovements all in a immersive four walled environment that has some style.


360 degree camera and projection system....

olympus_360.jpgOlympus is kind of ahead of the whole immersion curve it seems by surprising the world with the first HD (as in 1080iiiii (why fucking interlace?)) camera AND projection system that records and projects a 360 degree round view. No word on pricing or availability yet but I do have a feeling that soon the editors of this world sit in odd round rooms - obviously before hollywood will get wind of this the vjs are on the forefront and have done various diy solutions making projection domes and stuff for - like - ever. Anyway immersion is good - a standard would be even better, yet I don´t think this will be a hit with the couch potato who's average room probably does not fit a 360 degree projection surface. And 1080iiii is a bit rough if you have to stretch it out by so much, but its progress after all and big companies pushing the boundaries can not be such a bad thing in the end - which is sadly far far away for the poor video souls trying to get a true immersive environment.

Via TechOn

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Apple props Red One

red_one_in_action.pngIn a bold move Apple showed a Red One logo at their NAB keynote presentation.

"You can take 4k files, plug it directly into a MacBook Pro, and see and edit them right there. The industry is going to change. You will be able to work with this whole new breed of moviemaking." (engadget).

WOW. 4k on a powerbook 4:2:2 and it is actually real. I mean that is basically absolutely every motion picture artists dream come true — BiG period for a while (until 3d comes along).

The video is now also on


AVIT->C3 Berlin 2006 & 23C3

Its this time of the year again - no not the crazy "I can spend money faster then anyone else" festivities - the Chaos Communication Congress is nearing and with it an attached AVIT VJ conference.
Ill be there (so not playing) and if you are identifying with the vj or/and hacker culture this is the place to be between the christmas roast and new years eve vodka.

The international VJ Conference AVIT>C23 will present a programme at Berlin's iconic BCC from December 27th to 30th, while showcasing VJ works across Alexanderplatz the M12 gallery, and closing with an 'plug-in' a/v jam at c-base. Part of this year's 23C3 Chaos Communication Congress, AVIT>C23 is built on the committment and involvement of the VJ community: More than 20 presentations, VJ-talks, techniques and technology lectures, and experimental work-groups will be offered and over 90 visual artists will present their showcases, all with the aim of fostering peer-to-peer development of this emergent scene.

AViT>C23 is proud to welcome over 30 musicians and over 90 visualists from Austria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Israel, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States of America.

For further information please see


Love Parade 2006 and The Love From Above

TLFA06Speaka.pngWith its miss last year the Berlin Loveparade is poised for a comeback at an unusual date with the slogan "The Love is Back" and the hymn from Westbam "United States of Love". I got a surprise booking for Paul van Dyks (and the official) opening party called "The Love From Above" on Friday the 14th of July at the Berlin Arena and Glashaus venue. If you happen to be around come by and say hello.


Record only the important things in your life

gaze_detect.jpgThe dream of many media gangstas is it to have a constant record of the world surrounding, visual as well as audible (and possible in holographic quality). This "Feed" has been featured in quite a few science fiction writings (gibson etc pp) and as beeing heralded as the ultimate truth tool it is also a privacy fear device par excelance. Even if a camera inside your eyes and a direct soundfeed straight out of your brain would be feasable you still have that enormous amount of data where only a fraction would be interesting - sleeping would just produced a noozle sound and black pictures after all - and you sleep at least 1/2 of the time during the day (daydreaming included). This part of the problem seems to be solved by the Japanese Manabe Hiroyuki working for communication giant NTT DoCoMo. The device trains itself by looking at your attention peaks. Means when you daydream the device turns off an audio/video recording and saves the environmental setting as preset - so when you next encounter a similar situation it turns on automatically without consulting your brain. As anyone can see - this will probably stay away from massmarket at the moment. Original story found at engadget.


Nam June Paik died at age 74

PaikAbeVideoSynthesizer_FalkG_paik-2.jpgThe 1960s video pioneer who to this day still inspires the VJ and Video Installation artforms to great length died yesterday at the age of 74 in New York. His installations with lots of monitors are well known. I would also point to his support of "The Kitchen" - the New York video pioneers group operating in an old kitchen on New Yorks Broadway in the 60s/70s - testing out the boundaries of video in unique ways. Also he had a great hand in the development of video synthesizers - his invention the Paik-Abe Videosynthesizer has set a look favored by lots of artist to this day. Paik is one of those few great video artists that made it to world wide fame and has given the whole video art movement a voice and recognition. I thank him for that with all respect. May he rest in peace.


New VideoMixer for da VJs

vjx164.gifThree years ago a company producing audio gear marketed towards the live musicians introduced a bomb to the VJ world - the first videomixer since the early 1980s that was especially geared towards the VJs - the Edirol V4. The V4 has proven to be one of the coolest tools I have ever layed my hands on and was at a reasonable price for VJs to afford. It featured an innovative interface - a crossfader that you could switch over from horizontal to vertical, a very clean cut over and some okish fx (so I never liked the original video mixer fxs that came with the V4). Very lovely machine overall.

Now another company that never appeared on the average VJs radar and is also coming from the music supplier scene is topping Edirols product - by length.
The company is Vixid from France. Their innovation is a "4 Channel Dream Mixer" as Spark writes on the appropriate VJForums thread.
It has true uncompressed 4:4:4 processing. It has blend modes - something unseen in any videomixer yet - it has 16(!) inputes! Three independend output - four output total. It has a hardware driven audio-analysis and midi in-out and 30(!) different mixmodes and no trashy 80s looking video blendovers to be seen! Apperently they want to bring it to market "soon" a demo unit was at avit paris show and the market price will be "around 2000 Euros".

Order your own blinkenlights

miniblinke.jpgThe Philadelphia based company Bit Editions is selling what looks like a blinkenlights picture frame for the living room. Their press release says that you can display up to 1984 frames (yes yes big brother in there as well) on the simple LED screen. This sounds all good until you read further. For easy use you are to upload your animation to the company - means there is no easy USB interface to make you animations appear on the screen and a rather arcane custom eprom setup only lets you inside if you are experienced in hardware hacking - and if you are an expert in this field the hefty price tag of $400 for the framed and assembled package will let you think twice if you don´t want to roll you own from beginning for about 23 Euros. Instructions to do so are found on the BlinkenLEDs page. Happy hacking - ahem blinkin.


Video Guerrilla

f_vi_video.jpgApperently there is this guy - Fernando Llanos - running around with his self made video guerilla gear that is fully wearable including beamer with power supply and all. He projects burning airplanes an airport building, endless kisses in urban prostitution areas etc. See the full design at his website


VJ fundamental discussion continued.

I would like to continue the discussion started yesterday with adding some more thoughts about the whole state of affair with vjing. Its a later post from the thread on VJforum which has drawn now a lot of oldschoolers on that board and is shaping up to steer a debate on the fundamentals of vjing. My take on it:

To everyone pushing the "AV" thing - I do not believe in it - visuals are bad enough already diverting even more attention away from them toward the audio side will make them only worse - except when you speak of pre-made visuals that are played without interaction on a predefined musical set - but then its hard to speak of "vjing" anymore nor of "live audio".

To the "silent" VJs - of which practically I am one since 6 years - we suck. Have you actually really asked the crowed after the gig how they liked the visuals? Not your friends not people involved with vjing - normal guests? Its a nonevent and most of the time I guess it would have the same effect on them as just playing a prerecorded dvd.
Being narcissistic and saying "oh I play with the big audio guys on the big stages in front of lots of people" is just taking out the audience - which ultimately is your client - completely out of the equation. They don´t care (even if they subconsciously might be a little stimulated by the flicker flacker on the screen). Most would like the venues darker anyways and video does brighten up any club. Why is that? They want to escape and we are not catering to their escape as its too complex to undefined what happens on the screen to actually move people.

Now there are a some groups of VJs. One group makes most money with concepts, service and technic. These are the most "professional" vjs and those that get the most money. They in my opinion make the worst art as their time is spend with lumen, cabling and MHz.

Then there is the AV crowd - second ranking in money making as they can get gigs mostly for their audio material - the video is just an addon - and mostly it looks like just an addon - making an atmosphere more then a message.

Then there are those that can market themself very good - they spend more time making contacts and traveling around the world then actually producing content and thinking about what they are doing.

Then there are those who follow with all their heart - they are the ones truly believing in their pictures and mostly they have the best visuals to present - they make an average amount of money - not nearly enough to live off it but enough to follow it through long enough to get a reputation in a small field - some break out - not many, its the field which I give most support to but it has also suffered a lot and has not shown any breakthroughs in the last years I would say mostly because of lack of funds and therefore the same lack of time the first three groups suffer....

Then there are the computer geeks or people who generally want to do something in the club and see the vjing as an opertunity - most of the vj newcomers that I have seen fall in this category - I think they have to learn a lot.

and then some are a litte mix of all these which doesn´t make it any better for them - most problem beeing time (and money which is then converted back into time)

What they all have in common is that they are missing the point of what they are having in their hand - its a medium and a medium has to speak a message to stay relevant as a medium because a medium without content is a dead medium. And that is shown in the reaction of the punters - please take of the pink glasses and look from a neutral standpoint at the status quo. It has not changed since 5 years - only more vjs thingies are happening and the public knows about what a vj is but generally they think the same about the actual visuals in club - it has not changed a tiny bit and with the overall mentality that all is good and we need to celebrate ourself in selfmade polls and selfmade "battles" this will only get worse. What is needed is a true research on how to reach out to the guests how to touch them - we have utterly failed in that regard and not because "audio is stronger" - that this is not the case can be seen in any larger cinema - try to turn off the visuals there and the experience is mostly gone.

And to all those who try to tell me that "vjing" needs to get out of the club - go to hell.
VJing is a child of the club scene and if you want to do "live" cinema I have to tell you that I - as a vj - question any reason for this - there is no crowd to vow with your visuals beeing live - when they sit neatly in their theater seats - there is no public feedback from them that would make the performance better then a precut cinema - and that is the medium stand up to in that space. So no feedback from audience to react to no need to make anything live - simple as that - and old school cinema does still work extremely good in that regard making it live does not add much value on top of that other then you constantly remind the audience that they are not part of the film - as happens in normal cinema because some stylo is standing on stage clicking on his computer.

There are some niches in theater which I do not count out but there again where does the vj stop being a technician and start being an artist and isn´t it there the actual guy triggering the right video at the right moment is just like the light guy pushing the right button as formerly tried in rehearsals and that the preproduction for a theater is just normal video postproduction that has been going on for years and years and years? No need to re:term that being "vjing".

Now if you all do not believe me make a test: Try playing the best set in your life for an hour rock da shit out of your loops and your gear - best in an environment that you always thought is appreachiating the visuals. Now after that our plonk in dvd that is prerecorded even really shitty something that contrasts your highly valuable work or maybe just put on an iTunes screensaver. Then lean back and relax and wait for anyone complaining or anyone - outside of your friends circle actually talking to you that you are shit and that the visuals before were much better or go into the crowd and start conversations about how shitty you think the visuals are right now. less then 1% will have noticed that there was actually a change and about half of these 1% will be offended the rest of 99.5% of the crowd will neither have noticed anything or will just outrightly declare that they do not care and that they think visuals should be turned off because they brighten up the room too much.

As said I have not given up but seeing the lack of progress in the scene and the reluctancy to even admit that we are having the same problems that we have talked about in 2001 - even though we are having a public perception as persons now - we need to refocus that perception on the visuals themself but I guess a lot of vjs are afraid of this because that would mean to reflect and put it in contrast - maybe even with traditional media and that outlook is mostly bleak and is hardly to overcome with the small budgets and time constrains we are all having.

and as a small answer to mondos:
>>my original point was that the dj mag forum is shite! and it is they who are pretty clueless about vjs and themselves for that matter

They are the guests they are the ones looking from an outside standpoint towards our visuals and what they say is much more unfiltered then anything on here where any and everyone is biased toward their "art" and their approach to that "art". I highly value outside commentary like this as this reflects what the outside world is thinking about our product. And from my experience as guest in clubs I can only say their comments speaking more then the truth about the feeling the crowd is having down their on the floor. I also know that when you wear the vj hat in the same club you try to believe that it is not the case to make your underpaid nightlong gig not a nightmare.


Will the VJ replace the DJ?

Is the question ask in this DJ Mag board discussion thread. As I wrote in the VJ Forums thread I can state over and over that I highly agree with the naysayer punters that write things like

Doubt it, I think VJ'ing is pointless, I'd far rather be looking at the people I am dancing with, or in fact have my eyes shut rather than staring at the screen. ...

or from a similar thread

ore pertinant to me is why have a vj poll? it's hardly talent to click a mouse, even if your dexterity allows you to do it in time.
i think vj's are glorified lighting technitions who believe they are adding more to club culture than they actually are.
bring on the top twenty doorkeepers - some of them can tell jokes.
the top twenty djbox hangers - they know the dj ya know.

The number one reason why I am in "research mode" as of now making not many public appearances anymore - I am sick and tired of the VJ medium - it does not satisfy myself nor does it satisfy more then one out of 100 in the audience (subconsciously it might but its not very satisfactory for me nor most of the guests). Its not moving forward it has no meaning its random its flickery its artybarty and it doesn´t make any impact to society at large nor small. No - other then theories I have not many solutions - other then moving the whole party concept forward I do agree more and more with the people who say the VJs are the better lighting technicians - I have not given up yet and seeing a one layer trend coming through again with actual content on the screen is making me believe in a better future - but its still distant, far and bleak.

They did not get it because there is nothing to get....


Open Call for Collaboration between VJ&Videobloggers

Jean "skynoise" Poole in an open call to videobloggers and vjs on his blog (and various videoblogging and vj sources) makes the case for a "bedroom pixel army" to take on big media. In the nice tradition of interblog exchange I want to give an answer from my side - a side "experienced" in both sides of the "bedroom pixel front" but also on the side of the massmedia front through my family history.
I do agree completely with him that vjs and videobloggers should build a front against current MassMedia. I do disagree that both are fighting in the same turf and I think both have a LONG way to go until they reach any point where they pose a powerful enough force to take on the big guys. Here is why in form of the answer I gave him on the vjcentral threat:

... its all nice in concept but making a RELEVANT vj entry for the blog can consume a day or at least half a day. I am not a big fan of just posting a "vj mix" of the night before. I think videoblogging needs content as I ultimately think vjing needs content but videoblogging the more because you have the 100% focus of the person in front of the computer (or 95%) and if you just show eyecandy he/she/it will get very bored very easely and will never come back - except for some diehard vjs that just take a kick out of swirling lines and dancing gogo girls... videoblogging has - just like vjing - the potential to challenge 20th century media with new fresh approaches - videoblogging goes more into the tv domain while vjing goes more in the cinema domain - both of these are more then ripe for a change (the tv more then the cinema I guess). but this can´t be challenged with meaningless random lines, cutout dancers or 50 layers mashup of 70s tv series. Original content that gives the viewer a Mehrwert (whatever the english translation for that is - the german word fits perfectly)... I want to learn new things when I watch something - not only politics, technology or similar - it can be extended to spirituality or something that I don´t know about yet or whatever but it has to be in some respect meaningful - for the pure "turn off my brain" entertainment - hollywood and tv is unsurpassable as of now.
I do not have any proof of concept to offer (yet) and have lost interest in the pure mashup - the vjblog will be a little dormant for the next weeks. and yes there was interest in form of "oh thats nice to look at" kind of comments. it has no power and to talk in peters words (yes THAT peter) "we need to combine the powercommunicators with the message communicators to really make a change".
manovich can write trillions of pages about how cool new "spatial compositing" is and how the new "layer generation" is affecting tv and hollywood - but what he fails to see is that this "mashup generation" fails to generate a message - something that old fashion cinema AND tv always have had and why they rose in the first place (notice that the real mass consumtion of cinema started with the "news show reels" in the cinemas and not with the highly vj like art tests of our anchestors (Wallace-Rimington, Richter, Fischinger) - they fed the hollywood machine with new technics (especially fischinger is a good case for study with his involvement in Disneys "Fantasia") but they could not challange because of the lack of messages in their beautiful eyecandy creations.


VJ Tools: the tactic M2

lividm2.pngVJ tools are springing up everywhere and they get weirder and weirder. Instead of acknowledging that every VJ wants total freedom of the software and controller he/she uses companies pursuing the "all from us" strategy more and more. The newest breed is the "tactic m2" from lividinstruments - not only have I never heard of this company nor do I know their software. From what I see - "Nothing new move along". Even with the dedicated hardware its still only 320x240 capable on modern portable macs and contrary to the claim that it replaces a camera a video mixer a second powerbook and a slew of other gear - its fantasy and it will not. No one professionally VJing in big events will rely on only one source nobody will rely on solution without a video mixer (its such a good solution to many problems a software can never solve) and instead using curvy shaped mahogany they should have used an indestructible much cheaper plastic that fits in cases as most VJs lack space and funds. Also there are tons of other Midi gear out there that works with about any VJ app on the planet and is not confined to the one that noone has heard and that is totally untested by the masses. I feel that more and more company trying to rip of VJs not understanding that the market is still so tiny and mostly uncommercial - they will get it eventually. And audio over USB has a not acceptable lag so don´t even supply your customers with a free adapter....


Vote for - ähmmm MY VISUALS?!!! :)

homepage_vjvote.jpgI have been shortlisted on the DJMag Top20 annual VJ Poll . I have never been on any official list or anything and I had a rough year vjing wise. I only want people to vote for me who really honestly like my visuals - not me myself as a person not because I played for big named DJs or in high quality clubs and settings - I only want to be in this official list if my visuals in themself are liked by people - so if you have seen stuff I did or were impressed by an articel or interview by what I said about my visuals then please write a mail to and tell them that you liked my visuals. You can include up to 5 VJs in that list to be counted.
See this website for more details:"

PS: The page says that you have to have 5 names in your email to be a valid contribution. So while you are at it vote for some 4 others.... if you don´t know any more then drop me a line I can help you with that.... ;)


Urban Arts Festival

logo_3d_farbe_HG weiss.jpgOn the way to Istanbul our first (or maybe second) stop will be Vienna or better "Die Wiesen". I was invited by eye|con to play at the Urban Arts Festival next weekend there.
Its said to be Europes biggest Drum and Bass Festival outside The UK but I will not play to Drum and Bass - I will play self choosen with Miss Kittin on stage two on Friday around midnight.
There are over 30 VJs at the event and the DJs are top notch. If you happen to be around check it out and say hi :)


First Quarz Composer VJ Application

Roger Bolton also known as Dr. Eskaton who I recently meet in London has finished his first Quartz Composer Based VJ application. You can download it here.
He also introduces a special Quartz Composer for VJ Website. What is interesting on this website he uses a QuartzComposer Patch as design element on top. Anyone who has a windows machine and Quicktime7 installed care to tell me if he sees this?


The worlds first VJ Widgetcast plus Artificial EyeTunes

artificialeyetunes.pngiTunes 4.9 is incorporating podcasts - means you can download rss feeds of your favorite podcasts - normal rss feeds with an Audio embed - and have them uploaded to your iPod all automatically.
With the functionality of AudioPodcast came the quite introduction of videocasts for the growing number of videoblogs. So Apple acknowledges not only that VideoBlogs are the next big thing but also give a huge boost to this still young scene around the net.

Now get the worlds first vjCast in eyeTunes for our Artificial Eye VJBLOG. (simply copy the this link and add to your podcasts in iTunes via the Advanced/Subscribe to Podcast menue option)

Widgetcast.pngAnd while you are at it making use of cool Apple Tiger Technologies you can also download our highly experimental ArtificialEye VJWidget that displays the last five entries in an experimental interface. (skins to follow ;)

More information on the Artificial Eye


Interview about the general state of VJing today.

VJ jean_pØØle from Melburne/Australia who has been long time in my blog roll and is preparing a re:launch of his highly valuable blog as his old one lost the hosting service was sending me an email asking me for an interview for his new blog, for 3D world mag and for a larger in depth article on ANAT - mostly about my personal perspective of AVIT but also about the general state of the VJs today.I decided to post the larger uncut version on here for you to enjoy.


What lead you to start VJ-Blogging? ( and what excites u about it? )

The starting idea was totally uncreative. I looked at the stats of my normal blog one day and thought "wow there are a lot of people coming to my blog through the google search term 'vj blog'". A quick look at google revealed that mysteriously my blog had claimed the number one spot with this term. I thought that this is not right as my "vj related" content on there was not enough to satisfy someone coming here through this search term. The idea of a true VJ blog was born - not text but video centered. Right in the beginning I came to the realization that not only was the idea of a "VJ blog" new but also the idea of video blogging in general was in its infancy - maybe 3 month into a hype starter. I also found out that the Video Blogging community had its own video RSS viewer called ANT.
Now you have a very new hot technology - video blogging - with a very hot old but revived media - vjing - together and I think that makes this blog very special.
The idea behind the content was twofold - first I wanted the blog to become a personal loop aggregator - a way to force myself to create new loops. Secondly the urge to find a way to project socially aware loops that reflect my personal interest was one of the great motivators for myself.
From the beginning on it wasn´t meant to be a personal blog, because creating so many loops to make the blog worthwhile to look at would eat too much of my time so I opened it up for other contributors. Michael Parenti (exiled.surfer) was the first who jumped on it and has been very active. At AVIT Birmingham we meet for the first time and we figured that we want around 5 people actively contributing to the blog with other "guest bloggers" coming in randomly. Todd Hille (synesthete) was added to the regular contributors as well. If anyone is interested in the concept and wants to regularly contribute write me a mail we are still actively pursuing people - hopefully from around the world.

At the AVIT gathering of VJs from all over the globe - what -
-differences / similarities or strengths / weaknesses did u notice amongst the VJ work there?

Firstly I want to point out that the overall quality of the work seen really set standards far beyond from what seemed to be possible the last years. I would like to make two categories from what I have seen: the beginners and the pros and I would like to only comment on the pros that have been in the market and that you just see their experience shine through everywhere. The beat synchronity was superb with all vjs I have seen. For the first time I have seen a lot of visuals really going with the flow of the music and really reacting to it. That might have to do with all the new toys and tools available but also I think a lot of us have now some much needed experience to work with the beat. As for weakness I was a little surprised that besides some few the content of the work overall still was more eyecandy or blantend war pictures then actual concepts or even narratives. I would have loved to be inspired by others for my narrative persuing and except for the few vjs in "narrative lab circle" this was mostly absent.

Whose work stood out ( & why) ?

The two persons really standing out for me personally were VJ Oxygen and VJ Solu. It must have been the fine compositions and the overall flow and the colors and the lovely aesthetics - maybe woman are more capable vjs?

What do you think are the most interesting ideas amongst VJ related software and hardware at the moment?

Uh talking technical I am not really the right person to ask right now. I still use 1.5 year old VDMX software. I was noticing that almost all Mac users are now on Grid Pro. I have not even bothered to look at the numerous midi workshops and installations. The only thing that still stands out is probably the VDJ -X1 from Pioneer. My first reaction a year ago when I first heard about it was not very favorable but I think they made a great product - that laying my hands on one was a quite surprisingly powerful feeling. For the price of two of those I rather buy one or two powerbooks they still can do more for me personally.

And what do you think are the biggest challenges / hurdles for VJ software / hardware development today?

Well they all seemed to figure out how to handle beat detection and audio analysis - they all seem to be fairly fast on newer hardware. Most attempt to do full resolution and once we get better harddrives (internally) I might even look into finally switching to full rez as well. For the same reason I don´t think a lot of us will do HD(T)V anytime soon.
The new challenges for software certainly is finding better interface metaphers and let the vj define the style of the output rather then the software - which will happen when there are more effects with more individual control and by the time the software has gotten more modular over all. As said the vj is who makes the visuals and not the software or hardware and if your software has certain limits then do the most you can within these limits and hack out of them as much as you can.

What about yourself personally - in which directions are you most interested in taking your work?

I am totally into narrative vjing. My first test narrative "CTRL-V a hacker story" is now at version 1.5 so it has progressed over each performance with enhanced fx, content and typography. I am at the point now where I think I need a new story - something more complex - more challenging. I think the point that a story can work in a common club setting has been made now and its time to push it forward with a better overall production quality and a better storyline. This is something I will pursue in the future along with the VJBlog which gained a lot of attention lately and doing "vjblog only" performances are definitive on the horizons - once the content in there has filled up.

What do you think distinguishes today's push for an 'expanded cinema', from other pushes in decades just past?

Oh what a lovely question :) I think the VJs finally have the tools that are easy enough to use and offer such a great diversity that for the first time ever in history we can create moving images from our imagination "live". For example imagine Oskar Fischinger with tools like we have today and how much gorgeous content he might have produced with it and how he could have really redifined motion picture media. Now today everyone is in the position to be an Oskar Fischinger but what is still lacking is the content. If the VJs can put meaning into their visuals through whatever means I think we are on a new media platform that might stand next to Cinema and Television as the third option. What the past lacked was not the content - I even think at point they were far more advance in that part - but they lacked the tools to put it all together. What we can thank the past that they have pushed technology so hard that now we have all the toys we need to make this artform something significant - we just have to look back at the core concepts of content from those times and also learn a few things from traditional motion picture media. Another thing we are about to change is the public perception. A lot of VJs try to better the image of the scene around the world - might it be through events like avit or through a online media push or through talk on the streets - the vjs are better and better known each month and recognized as artist.
We should not forgot the VJs past - not forget that we are coming from a socially aware background of geeks and artists trying to push technology to the edge while always making an independent statement of our world view. If we stay true to that we might have a brighter future then our pioneers - a future of recognition - a future with our own media power.

In the end we all have a lot of fun creating beautiful moving pictures - its our passion and love - its what we like to do most - its what makes us and the world around us happy - that is what unites us with our past.


AVIT05::The Rest

So AVIT is over for about a week now and I am slowly recovering from this emotionally, spiritual and physical intense week. I am sorry that I could not follow up on my daily entries but there were so many things going on in parallel that I rather followed personal instinct to go with the flow then sitting in a dark corner on my own and making an entry. I hope I remember most of the stuff that went on. I stopped on Wednesday afternoon preparing the VJBlog PDF....
I think I went out into this muslim street half hour walk from the Custard Factory with Manuela Leu (heiligenblut) VJane from Munich just to be immersed into a very strange black only culture for about half an hour. We ate at an Indian-Persian Fish and Chips Fast Food restaurant which served tasty massala - well - fish and chips. After that we went back and straight into the Theater where the 4X4 by Exceeda was going on. It was 4 sessions with each 4 video shorts in music clip style - political, mentally, spiritual provocative and in between a 45 minute VJ interlude. I had a lot of reality distortion during the viewing and the works shown where sometimes out right amazing and sometimes very shitty. One of the 45 Minutes VJ interludes that I really enjoyed was the one from VJ Solu. She worked her own NATO+0.55 patch (we were guessing what software VJs are using and I was right twice ;) like I have seen noone else before and it looked outright gorgeous. If you ever have the chance to see her its a must.
After i wandered a little around the gallery seeing elektroschroeders bedroom installation (very lovely) I went back to the hotel to prepare for my narrative lab lecture the next morning.
Waking up much too late I went to the Maverick. A satellite house to the custard factory. On the way there I found an original banksy in some side alley - having found one in Brighton two years ago as well made me kinda of happy and feel that this will become a good day. Arriving at the Maverick at around 11 it was clear that I was not the only one who couldn´t get his ass out of bed as VJ Anyone who was supposed to have his storyboarding for VJs lecture around 10 am was just starting. So I had a seat and actually learned a lot during this lecture as it was far away from a traditional storyboarding approach and was provoking a lot of thoughts in my mind on how to incorporate this - thanks Ollie from here for that. The small room quite filled I took over and presented - very nervously - my CTRL-V VJ story and all thoughts surrounding this project. It was much deeper then what I presented in Berlin in December as I had to go on for an hour rather then 20 minutes and was really getting into the nitty bitty of my thoughts and experiences during all this time that I spend with CTRL-V - production and performance wise. I think I could help people understand my approach and hope I saved some from making the mistakes I made. After that I took the time out and wandered with Peter, Willow and a half naked transvestite friend Adam to an old abandoned church and then to the black neighborhood - which was kinda dangerous people shouting at us and we felt a little lost in between them. Sadly I was not able to use Michaels camera (I was to stupid) so most of the pictures from this strange trip are lost forever. Back a quarter after 7 pm we went straight into the theater to watch Lara, Paul and Toby - the head organizers of AVIT Birmingham and the main promoters of the narrative labs have their collective showcase - though Toby´s iMac crashed half way through it still was a refreshing approach to narrative storytelling in a VJ context and I thought had some great moments - mainly interloop narratives - going on. The style would not fit into a normal club - more in a bar or a theater as it was mainly to bright and had some difficulties catching up to the music - but overall very astonishing.
After that the Shaanti night was going on and we stayed insight the custard factory - grabbing some food and eating it in the Theater Lobby. Then we wanted to go out into the office for a short time and when we came back they wanted us to pay an entry fee. Well people knowing Peter and me can imagine what we thought and how we reacted. We left the place. Sadly I could not see the Japanese crew vjing and also missed Ollies set - hopefully another time another day.
Next day - Saturday - getting up late I prepared my set for the night all morning - getting in late for the Work in Progress Session moderated by Lara in the Theater. I went in there and it was my turn right away after Rafeal.
Just one diversion about Rafael. I never got his card so I hope I can still get in touch with him as our approach to narrative VJing differs on some points but we seemed somehow connected in our way. I was watching his set in the Mixlab the day before and was very impressed. He has a rather nonlinear approach and it opened my eyes. Very sad that I could not talk to him more. I got on stage and was very surprised about my confidence in front of so many people in the Theater and think that those who missed my first narrative lab presentation could get a glimpse of CTRL-V now. A good discussion aroused if narrative visuals are working in clubs - a discussion that was put forth on the night on a visual level - especially with hfr labs who really impressed me with their abstract visuals - more on that in a minute.
After getting some food in some strange indian restaurant down the street we came back just to find the main stage which michael&todd, hfr lab, toby/spark, vj oxygen and me was playing was already set up. The setup was BAD. Really BAD and people who know me can imagine how I reacted - very angry. The two plasmas where good but a mirror beamer installation for me was not suitable nor for anyone else - especially because the beamers did not even fill the screen and were badly adjusted. On top of that was the fact that the VJs were put BEHIND the screen BEHIND the stage not seeing the audience at all. Well a very "vivid" discussion arouse were SleepyTom almost hit me. Luckily this time it was not only me complaining. We removed the desks a little so we could at least have a glance to the crowd and installed a different beamer and it looked much better - even if far from perfect. The night started out with toby - who I only got a glimpse of as I needed a shower and some short rest. When I came back I could watch Michael and Todd make their very Californian (they both come from California but have never met) colorfull set to the Californian DJ (they also never met with him!) kraddy. Very lovely contemparary technological surf vibe visuals to great beats. After them hfr lab catch the attention from sourrounding VJs when they opened up their powerbooks and it was clear that they would perform a pure FinalCut Pro Set! Yes the only software they used during their very abstract beautiful set was final cut pro mixed with a V4. Crazy but it worked. After that lovely VJ Oxygen worked the beamers with a style mix between Solu and me which I loved a lot. Great black and white masks with meaningful video source content and always on the beat. Then it was kinda my turn. Can´t remember much of it other then I felt a thousand eyes staring at me working. I was very concentrated and the pressure fell of when I realised that the music from the live act the lawgivers was perfect for CTRL-V and I was deep into it finishing right with the music - Have you hacked your world tonight? You can´t believe how happy I was afterwards. It could have been a better show if I would have been on stage and got some vibes from the crowd - I would have not been so tired during the end but generally yes I think I made my point of narratives in a VJ concept. Overall this stage on this night was a cutthrough most styles you see in VJing today and I think the selection of people playing here was totally great.
Somewhere in between Peter introduced Michael and me to the head organizer of the Drop Beat not Bombs and also to the founder of That was before my set and I could not really concentrate - which is a shame. I really would have love to philosophically talk with them a little more.
Getting some much needed sleep and then trying to get some late breakfast inside town Sunday morning we all met at this obscure bar near the Custard Factory. All the Core AVIT people that you see at every AVIT mixed with a lot of new faces tried to relax and socialize and get their raffle prices. I won nothing - which didn´t surprise me at all. Todd won the V4 - giving that he paid for his plane ticket from california on his own he really deserved it the most in the round. After some tearfull goodbye Toby, Willow and me went straight to Nottingham for our next gig. Arriving there it was clear that we were playing behind the screen again - something that you seem to have get used to in the UK - in that regard the Berlin VJ scene is much better - if not perfect as well. The gig was for detonate with LTJ Bukem and London Electricity playing there - great night if I wouldn´t have been so tired. Bad hotel room sleeping on the floor and a little money more we went back to London with a short stop in Nature that was MUCH needed and refreshing after all this concrete city grey street shit of the last week. In Tobys new home in London we fused back with Michael, Ray and Dave from Vidvox, David and Paul and Lara and relaxed a bit the rest of Monday. On Tuesday after some joint breakfast and some talking sessions we went to the AppleStore to see the Vidvox Grid Pro presentation. There we meet up with Yo Hann from a Kanarian Island that was interviewing and documenting the whole AVIT thing for his own sake and he introduced us to Bianca. Also there was DJ kraddy from the DropBeats not Bombs night as well as Clarissa young VJane start up from Heidelberg and appearing DrEskaton a VJ that I have known on VJforums for some time who is very knowledged when it comes to OSX patch programming. So we rounded it all up with some food - actually the group split up some went to get a burger some went to get some tai food. The Tai food group was somehow spiritual unaxplainable here on the blog and with all this energy I barely catched my plane on Wednesday and came back as exhausted as I was never before.

It now all feels very surreal and dreamlike ......


AVIT05::Day2:: philosophic discussion continuing

spark3.jpgAfter the very lovely first day and a good morning session with - and I have gotten his name now - Brendan Byrne - I continued with the narrative lab and Brendans test with surveillance cameras and making a narrative out of them. And yes it was of course working beautifully. The best test I didn´t tape when two of the attending vjs started running around wild and chasing each other and you could follow them to the beat on the cameras. After that I had a little walk around Birmingham. Its hard to describe the town and it reminded me with its feel of some of the cities in middle of China. Old culture that has seen better times meeting 21st century kapitalistik society. Its not the same style as in China nor is it as crowded but the old factory building telling you about the earlier better times next to a giant glass mall and the symbolic katholic church right next to it have a very inspirational feel all throughout the city - not something I would like to live in but very interesting for a visit. The best of it all was probably the greasy car repair shop in an old church like building.
Anyway back to the Custard Factory and therefore AVIT I found out that I missed the Be In Control workshop but since midi controllers are not my kind of main interest I was not to worried and hanged out with the programmers from VidVox telling them what I personally would like VDMX 5 to become. They are very open for the feedback and that will hopefully result in a good program for all of us.
Then I switched Hotels - now staying at this ultra conservative hotel concept called "ibis". All bussiness related and nice clean without personality but with a shower in the room.
Going back after the hotel switch and having some intermediate talks with attending VJs and getting thrown out of our working place in the old library I went straight to the informal meetings in the reception area. Toby/Spark was re:presenting his VJing for Postproduction (link follows) talk he had given at AVIT^C3.
After that is was the turn for Michael and me presenting the VJBlog. The interest in the talk exceeded all of our expectations. About 20-25 people sitting in front of us and more coming by and listening. There was this feeling in the room that we are really hitting a point with the blog and that we will get more contributors for it ones we have a better backend in place. A philosophical discussion about content arouse shortly.
The third talk after this was about NOW! the Movie from Dennise (sp?) manager of the cold cut originated project. She talked about the idea behind the movie and the form of contribution and showed us the pretty trailer. So I have had personal reservations not about the project but about the handling of the project - which seemed to closed and not communicated right - after hearing her talk and show her own contribution to the project I think I will be sending in some of my "world" loops. After that there was the VPEEK with much too loud music and nice but contentless visuals going on in the medicine bar and our table was filling with the "philosophical" crowd that has formed during the first two days - peter rubin, the vidvox crew, michael parenti, brendan byrne, willow and many more. If the music would have been just a little bit quieter a vivid discussion could have aroused - so we had this very intense one to one talks going on until the bar closed and thrown us out (yes to be thrown out is something you have to get used here :/
This morning after a wonderfull refreshing shower and nice breakfeast I arrived and went straight to the telematics and bodydataspace session going on in the old library. So I do respect the work the dancing company does and the interaction with vj mondo and moving the project out of the club into cyberspace and back into the club I thought their project is a little "hollow" without much content or the content burried so deep into the dancing side that I failed to see it as I am really no expert on dancing. Then a small work willing group of people formed in the old library only to be thrown out again and homeless we sit in the theater reception picking up the two bars of hidden wifi network preparing the PDF of our VJBlog session.

PS: Photo from Michael showing Spark at his "VJ Post" presentation.


AVIT05::It has started with philosophy

PeterMaxavisionAVITUK05.pngJust a little short report from AVIT. A lot of well known faces have already arrived and the spirit is high over here in Birminghams Custard Factory. After toby spark put me right into narrative lab after my arrival - which I couldn´t scope with right away I refreshed myself in one of the strangest hotels I have ever been to (totally automatic check in with pin numbers - airplane like toilets and breakfast empty at 10 am) and went straight back to the custard factory.
There was a session Peter Maxavision going on. Peter is the oldest among us and the video mix artist with the longest experience of all. He hates the commercialization of the scene and the fixation on tools and toys of most of the younger vj´s. He misses the content in the screenings and he misses communication.
The session was the philosophical prelude to the week and was very promising to raise awareness to the issue of content, communication and the real world.

This morning I was in the narrative lab session with - o shit I can´t remember his name will put it in when I found it - anyway it put some perspective on philosophical concepts of Deleuze in a narrative moving image context.

So a form of causality/narrative which feeds back on the material events on the floor and takes data from the outside world could produce a narrative of the social unconscious, more like a dream than a TV show.

Recommended books:
Deleuze and Cinema
The Aesthetics of Sensation
Barbara M. Kennedy

On AN(ARCHY) and Schizoanalysis
Roland Perez

He showed us a work where he stitched together multiple CCTV surveillance cameras in portugal to a panorama and explains why this is narrative. The afternoon lab session was a big "narrative in surveillance cameras" try out and it worked quite well with "hidden actors" that made people react.

An inbetween session has been with Charles Kriel - the BBC VJ. He showed off the capabilities of the Pioneer DVJ X1 and I must say that I am a little more impressed with the machine now then after my short interlude with it last weekend at the Maria. The capabilities are enough to make a DJ and a VJ happy. The big grief is its price. You get a powerbook for the same price and I would always opt for a new powerbook.

Tonight I will have my first session - it will be together with Michael about the vjblog in the old Library/Custard Factory around 8 p.m.


AVIT UK 2005 fALk schedule


Next week the AVIT VJ conference return to their home in the UK. This time the international VJ Scene will meet at Birminghams Custard Factory. For general information please see the website at

I will be participating as lecturer and showcase vj in the following events:

Introduction to VJBlogging
michael and I will give an overview of the vj blog surrounding technologies, concepts and future plans

exiled.surfer & proto.beamaz:fALk
Wednesday April/27
8:00 pm
Old Library 2

Narrative Lab: CTRL-V a hacker story
I will give a one hour presentation about my evolved narrative test set "CTRL-V a hacker story" with a lot of inside thoughts on my proceedings regarding narrative storytelling in a VJ context. Beforehand Olliver (VJ Anyone) will talk about Storyboarding for VJs

proto.beamaz:fALk, VJ Anyone
Friday April/29
10:00 am - 1:00 pm

Narrative Lab: Work in Progress
Work in progress is a two hour session that highlights some of the narrative works going on in the world wide VJ scene. I will have 15 minutes for spoken overview of CTRL-V and a short video preview of a recorded performance.

Dan Roy, Raphael, Debbi Lander, fALk
Saturday April/30
2:00 pm 4:00 pm

Drop Beats Not Bombs
I will have a showcase performance at the Drop Beats Not Bombs Events. I perform CTRL-V to make case of point that a narrative does indeed work in a club setting. I will play in the Pool Marquee Trigger Room with finest electronic music

vjoxygen, HFR-Lab, proto.beamaz:fALk, Tektun
Saturday April/30
3:00 am - 4:00 am
Pool Marquee / Trigger Room

For more up to date information see the schedule. If you have any questions feel free to ask.

10 Years E-Gruppe


The Berlin cubscene celebrations are not ending yet. Tonight the vj, dj, art and promoter group e-gruppe is celebrating their 10th birthday. The party will be at the Maria am Ufer and will star many many oldschool dj and vj resident faces of Berlin. I am invited to play as well and will spin the harddrives as vj opener from til 1.30 am.

10 years hedonistic lifestyle support | 10 years of esoteric underground entertainment | 10 years electrochemo-pharmaceutical dance society | 10 years e-fusion network | 10 years explosive visual e-mc-ing | 10 years deep-into-ear-&-eye-action..........

tanith (vitriol), mijk van dijk (microglobe), duck (delikat records), gianni vitiello (aromamusic), daniel boon (ostfunk records), wolle haarnagel (electric ballroom), u.v.m.

protobeamaz, gif-tv, flashforceone, notch & bead, hollie & flockey, pixel royal, e-gruppe u.a.


Tiny Beamer on the horizon

tinyprojector.jpgThe VJ gods are good to us. After the announcement that you can put a black and white beamer in a cellphone there is more news on the beamaz front. Battery Powered projectors the size of your palm. Not as strong as the big ones - the possibilities for usage are tremendous. The (vj)video warriors of the future wait to get their dirty hand on those cold LED brightened DLP beasts that still can project at least a 27" large screen on almost anything that you can imaganine (walls in a moving subway, moving screens on night demonstrations, walls of big corporations making a non violent non destructive statement for the masses). Mitsubishi and InFocus are the first to come out and plan to put the thingies to market in quantities for around $600 shortly.

It will be interesting to watch when the first laws coming from our powergovernments that restrict the usage - if not it will spark a new kind of powerbattle in the streets.,1759,1749548,00.asp

and the discussion on


Sony to release royalty free video clips targeted at VJs?!!!

In a statement to counteract the rumors that Sony is preparing an online digital video store of the concept "iTunes" Sony Connect vicepresident Steve Banfield is telling the world that no such service is in the planning right now. BUT get this (siliconvalleywatcher):

Mr Banfield said Sony was digitizing its movies, and it would also allow some clips of its digital video to be used royalty-free for video “mash” projects, in which music and video footage is remixed, sometimes in live performance.

Sony is recognizing the VJs! Its clear that the VJ market seemes to have evolved enough that we are getting attention from huge corporation. As I always said this is VJ year zero everything onward from here goes UP.
Personally I will continue to prepare my own clips and movies as I ultimately think that this is the only way that will ensure that I have an distinct style but its a very noteworthy development.

PS(22.April 2005): after thinking about it a litte I have two intervened takes on it. First is that I think - purely speculative - if they really release some of their "better" content for vjs to use it will ultimately raise the quality of the vj content out there - which on first glance is kind of good. The twist in that seems that if a lot of newbie vjs use this high quality content it ultimately leaves those without much production money but their own content pretty much in the dust. And this is where I think this strategy comes from - fear - fear that the vjs might be somehow successful in their endover and posing a thread to traditional media - something like a preemptive strike. Now people like myself who produce their content not only have to scope with the "pre-delivered" (mostly shitty and replicated) content from arkaos, motion dive and the like but have to compete with the high end content coming out of big ass corporations. After thinking this over and over I think it does not help us much other then raise overall awareness - which could be good if it would not kill creativity at the same time.
But maybe I am just paranoid.


Good bye Tresor - a personal retrospective

This morning 9 a.m. the letters that meant so much for the Berlin subculture where dismounted under the tearfull eyes of many. TRESOR was more then a club - Tresor was the last standing symbol of free, loud, uncontrolled subculture and after 14 years it has to close so that the rich can build a sterile office tower in its place.
I was in the Tresor for the first time maybe 10 years ago - I was more one of the people going to the E-Werk in those times - a more personal preference then any issue with the club. Back then there was what counts as the most true subculture of all - a subculture that rose from the chaos that came with the dissolve of east germany. A healthy ground for creativity that inspired so many to work in the creative field in the first place. It was maybe three or four clubs that made all the vibe - the Walfisch that was the first to close and where my memory really blurs as to describe what it was like - the Bunker - known for the most extreme speedy Gabba Techno, the Tempel E-Werk and the holy steel walls of the Tresor. All the clubs went down one after another and most of the time it had to do with permissions and location problems. The bunker and the e-werk locations are still in existence today. Nothing happens in the bunker anymore and the renewed e-werk looks more like a renewed office building then a place for dirty loud subculture and some events that tried to revitalize the feeling from "back then" failed completely. The Tresor was the last standing bastion for a healthy subculture scene and a sign that you could always hold up and be proud of if you where afflicted with the scene in Berlin. Techno has seen so many faces in the meantime - a rise and fall of the loveparade - the rise and fall of thousands of smaller and larger clubs - the commercialization of electronic music into the extreme and the Tresor has survived it all - financially and bureaucratically and spiritual. It was always there for giving the scene some guidance and personally - to an extent - it helped making my own personal decision to become a VJ - I am addicted to the fusion of our mammal feelings(dance, spirit) and futuristic sounds(technology) and Tresor gave those feelings a meaning - everyone who ever danced downstairs to some good techno beats could feel free for a moment - free from all chains of the modern world. This dirty loud subculture is exactly what makes spiritual survival in the modern times possible for many young overstressed people and makes many of them communicate that would sit in front of the TV otherwise. In Tresor it never mattered who you are where you came from. I have seen people wear dresses next to dirty old punks next to beatiful topless girls next to the ordinary young neighbor. They all got along and all had their own way of communication - if they didn´t want to talk they danced and they loved.
That I got the opportunity to play as a VJ in Tresor is something I will never forget and that I will always be thank-full for. My first time vjing in the Tresor/Globus (the upper part) was almost a year ago - for a Sommersafari crew birthday party - and I can tell you that I was a very happy VJ that night - it was kind of magic creeping up in telling me this is what all the work is for even though the crappy beamers never really showed much of my pictures. That the Tresor Crew was so cool to let the VJs of AVIT^C3 play there on the Wednesday before NewYears Eve and that they bought this huge kickass videowall knocked me off my shoes and was about the coolest VJJam I have ever witnessed - but what honors me most is that they trusted me to book VJs and play there for their last birthday - 4 nights true spirit for those who cared most. With Friday the most interesting day music wise I have ever experienced inside the old shopping malls money storage and entrance hall. Playing at Tresor has brought me some of the most intense tight sets I ever experienced with a wonderful open crowd.
Thank you Tresor Crew for making this happen over all this time and thank you for letting me play and be part of this wonderful 14 year long experience. Yesterday was the day to say goodbye - very personally - I celebrated and danced and had a lot of nice memories pop up in my mind - an era is over at least for me - not much will change but much will be missed.
This last saturday will be the day that either marks a new future for Berlins subculture or its sellout and slow painfull death.
Good bye Tresor and I hope that the new home you hopefully find will be filled with the same true spirit as always.

PS: I would like to thank Micha, Ralf and the whole Lighting Crew for their fantastic support during my visits and hope that we can work together again in the future.


VJ blogging

VJblogthroughANT.pngSome have gotten to it through unknown dark channels. Some have seen my new email footer, some belong to the VideoBlogging community but most have not seen it yet as I am still in the preparation phase (I thought). The feedback I got already without making it public at large has pushed me to the point where I prematurely have to announce my "little" side project. A true VJ blog. Why? because the ranking for "vj blog" shows me in first place out of 159.000 search queries - for a reason totally unknown to me. Actually this is the first day you see entries that have "blog" and "vj" in the same sentence. Since a lot of people seemed to come to me from google through the term vj blog I have thought about how a real VJ blog should look like. And here it is. If you want my full thoughts on it you have to navigate to the first entry. To sum it up a little excerpt from said entry:

The idea is to collect visual information through the day and post a short vj loop that incorporates personal interesting pictures and movies from the day. A longer cut up of all the week in vj loops will come on (some) weekends.

And while we are on topic. Video Blogging seems all the hype right now. The mailinglist burst out with over 400 mails in 3 days and the community is one of the most active, happy, futuristic forward looking I have ever joined on the net. They truly believe that what they do will change the web and change TV and this is actually what got me hooked.
Is videoblogging the potential TV killer? If you just look at the blogs through a webbrowser you might not think so but the true killer application for videoblogging is the ANT. Since the ANT is SOOO cool I will have a new blog entry just for this in the next 10 minutes so hold on :)

AVIT UK 05 Birmingham

AVIT returns to its hometurf again this year. Birmingham in the UK is the place to be from april 25th to may 1st – if you are a VJ. This years AVIT Uk will be a little different then the former. It runs a whole week instead only an extended weekend and the emphasis is clearly on education rather then showcase. Not to say that there won´t be any showcases - drop beats not bombs will be an event that features AVIT VJs with political content for example.
Personally I will be there the whole week and will hold a talk on narrative VJing and have a showcase at the mix labs educational show without beat support by fRED but hopefully with music by MoGreens. Also I will unveil the first true VJ blog to the VJ masses.


Last Tresor Birthday

After 14 years Berlins last standing club from the good old times will close its door in its old location "Leipziger Strasse" close to the Potsdamer Platz. The Tresor is the club most remember beeing exposed to techno first (right next to the e-werk which was closed years ago) and is still one of the best clubs in town when it comes to pure electronic music. The Tresor headquarter is looking for a new location (or has already one and doesn´t want to tell anyone ;) but the old building which was a former bank and has a massive tresor room downstairs that got the club the name will be remembered as pure underground location with exessive parties.
To celebrate the last birthday - 14 years - the Tresor crew gives everyone a massive four day party starting next Wednesday March 9th and ending Saturday March 12th. audio acts include:

Rhythym & Sound 45 Session Feat. Paul St. Hillaire & Friends
Francois K.
Neil Landstrumm + Bill Youngman
Stewart Walker
James Pennington aka Suburbian Knight
Tresor Headquarter Allstars
and many many more...

As for visuals prototypen is providing the booking for the VJs during the event. We have invited what we think is a good mix of artists that fit into the Globus/Tresor environment.

These include:
zelabo (fr) who stunned us with their beautiful set at AVIT
videokonferenz feat. videoking (hamburg) resident at click808 and moonbootika
proto.beamaz: fRED&fALk (berlin) we don´t want to miss this great party :)
spark (uk) Big Chill, AVIT Uk -> one of the best mixers of graphic and video

All these will be presented on the upper floor Globus on a massive Backlit Video Projection Wall.

We hope to see lots of familiar faces and have all great good bye birthday party.


De:Bug at Nite in Hamburg Click808

I have been booked to VJ at a de:bug party on Saturday February 26th 2005 at one of the best known electronic music clubs of Hamburg - the click808.
Music comes from:
Jay Haze - live (Contextterrior, Tuning Spork, Textone/Berlin)
Sven VT (De:Bug, Contentismissing/Berlin)
Unique (Click)

see you there.


Machinima vs. VJ art

The PR releases went high about 2-3 years ago when the first larger machinima film "red vs. blue" hit the ethers that form the internet. A slashdot article had fired the name machinima into the head of lots of geeks and they liked it a lot - as geek what where they supposed to think? All genres that interest a "normal" geek where put into one -> 3D film, Game engines, fast graphic cards, war technics and geeky humor. I watched it and stopped after 1 minute... It was boring as hell - the story line was so predictable that I can tell you the whole film with just watching the first minute. I have never given machinima a chance again (I did look at some other machinima films just to be even more dissapointed). Yet the machinima world has done something the VJ has not achieved -> primetime news, lots of magazin coverage and a one to onehundred PR campaign that propelled the name machinima into the heads of lots of people (starting with said slahdot article). What all has begun so well is now falling down like a star that is sucked into a black hole. There have been hundrets of machinima festivals and prizes for best machinima films - but it all seemed self propelled marketing events to "establish" the genre - a genre that lacked one thing: CONTENT. The gamers that now felt like george lucas who probably never read a book without beeing forced to do so now tried to put together up to 90! minute films. I just can imagine all the people falling asleep over them. Of course there might still be some cool nice shorts made in machinima style out there but I have not found them nor does one piece stand out in any way.
Why the title to this entry you might think? Well I can say that I am utterly HAPPY that the VJ world defies all marketing campaigns to get into the public mind to FAST to FAR. I mean no one would mind if the public perception of our profession would be better then it is now - but I think a new genre - or a genre that wants to be center point in the public media view needs to mature and trust me when I say that the vj scene has to mature for at least another five years. Its getting better we are talking and all but what is still missing is the killer content away from the usual blink blink. Content that really enriches a night - content that talks - content that can hold up to contemporary art - contemporary film - these are the things that people will judge against any new media that tries to entertain or teach. This is what started the coming downfall of the machinima movement which personally was really excited about. The lack of quality thought out content. Now it will be much much harder to convince the general large public that this genre has the power to entertain them like a movie does. Since the general public still has not much heard about the VJ scene we are here for a slow healthy growth where we the artists can grow with the perception.
Now that said it could all come different with recent pushs of big corporations into our internal afair trying to judge good visuals when they are still all bad. If they succeed with this strategy the VJ scene will be in big trouble to get out of the image of moving wallpaper for all the years to come - just because some profit hungry VJs sold their soul. Watch what will happen to the machinima movement in the coming month to see what I am talking about - there are more similarities than some might think.

PS: machinima was actually "invented" by a company unlike the vj scene which has grown over hundrets of years so the PR push with them seems to be loosely connected to the "inventing" company. corporate evil destroys beautiful artist tool -> point still stands.


New AVIT^C3 Brochure


After long long nights we have finally got the conference together completely. We are very excited about the AVIT coming up and think that we have managed to get a good all around schedule where there is something of interest for everyone. We are even more happy that our schedule fits in so nicely with the whole Chaos Communication Congress Fahrplan and that a lot of workshops blend in between the vj and hacker world (f.e.pure data workshop and a full palette of media centered lectures). Anyway here is the new almost final schedule. There will be only one more update with specific timings for the showcases and last corrections but the current one reflects everything what will go on at the conference. I hope you all like as we do and come and enjoy the conference with us.

AVIT C3 Brochure Version 0.93


21C3 Conference Fahrplan

The Chaos Computer Club today has put online the official fahrplan (timetable) for this years ChaosCommunicationCongress. In the timeline you will not only find all lectures and workshops for the "hacker" side of the conference but also the complete layout of the AVIT^C3 VJ conference. If you want to know if its worth coming to the conference you need to have a look at this.


AVIT^C3 Berlin 2004 Conference Guide version 0.5

avit_c3logoWe have put together the first version of this years AVIT^C3 conference guide. We hope that this gives you an early overview of the things planned for the event and helps you in your decision making.
If you have any specific questions, there is are numerous contacts and resource links on the last page.

Download Brochure in PDF (600kb)


Arte brings us a documentary about the new forms of VideoMixing

Arte Television – known for its high class documentaries expecially of the art sector – will air a documentary about where the VJ scene will go onward into the future. There are interviews with multiple groups of VJs all going a different route. They do have an interview and a little introduction to narrative VJing and me myself at the forefront of this part. They did very indepth research into the whole VJing concept and from my perspective I think this might give us the "art" label at last... Other Vjs in the program are: visomat, jutojo und cinemix. props to Uta Goertzen to take the time and try to fully understand the VJ szene in its complexity of today).
The program will air on the German-French joint venture Arte as part of the monthly "Kurzschluss" on Wednesday November 3rd around 12:00 pm (0:00).


AVIT^C3 Berlin 2004 - Pixel want to be free

A collaboration to explore technology, community and VJ art, together the hacking, open source and VJ worlds.

The world of VJs has always been defined by the available technology and the possibilities it offers to make a new form of visual art and entertainment. The world of hackers has always been about altering current and future technology and adjust it to ones need. Both meet at the point of finding creative ways to use the tools available. So on the 27|28|29 December 2004 AVIT will hit Alexanderplatz, Berlin to hold an in-depth festival as part of the 21st Chaos Communication Congress (21C3) and conclude with a clubnight in Berlin's legendary music scene.

The possibility of the AVIT conferences - the largest colloborative gathering of VJs – taking part at the Chaos Communication Congress - one of the most important annual hacker conferences - has been proven to be a great source of inspiration to both sides for the first time with the OpenAirVIT in 2003 at the Chaos Communication Camp near Berlin.

Staged at the center point of the 'art and beauty' exhibits hall and with access to the conference and workshop rooms AVIT will be producing a programme drawn from the vj community's input - such as showcases, vj to vj talks, technique and technology sessions, experimental labs - and will host special contextual projects such as a collaboration with the famous Blinkenlights project (

Call for papers and participation

AVIT^C3 will be defined by what the VJs and visual artists have to offer each other. If you think you want to hold a talk, have a special offer for workshops, be part of a discussion round or just want to showcase your work have some special programm to show want to work with the Blinkenlights crew on a video to Blinkenlights software - we need your vision for involvement in electronic written form by 1st of November 2004. We are open for all possibilities and ideas - we need your help.

The speeches are bound to a maximum of one hour. The overall theme is "Pixels want to be free" - that is free from corporate pressure, copyrightss, ideologies of the past and free from technologic constrains. The nature of this theme is meant to provoke and you are free to fit your idea for a talk into this through content, philosophies, politics or technics. All talks to be held in english.

The workshops can be as long as 2 hours. It should revolve around production, hardware, software or technics themes.

The length of the showcases will depend on numerous factors. There are the "normal" showcases if you just want to show your current work to an interested audience. This will happen in the Art and Beauty Area and the outside screens. The "special" showcase that offers an advanced concept of VJing in general and optionally has a discussion round or a speech attached will be held in one of the conference rooms during night. Both kind of showcases will run through the first two nights of the conference.

If you just want to come along to learn or collaborate please drop us a line of your intention and personal interests so we can measure demand better and adjust the offers and timings.

for inquiries, proposals and questions:

more information about AVIT and the 21C3:

The Prototypen – collective for optophonic communication acting as regional coordination group will organize AVIT^C3 in full cooperation with the Chaos Compute Club and the AVIT UK crew.


Must have AntiAmerikanPropaganda

One of the nicest crafted movies in a long time that talks about the project "American Century" has come to my notion. Its a must to look at the blend of 2000 style visuals with an appearance that reminds you of old film and the deep message within with a very nice use of graphical language throughout. Have a look.


CTRL-V a_hacker_story V1.0

ctrlv_09.g4_fturmsignal.gifOn saturday September 11th 2004 protobeamaz:fALk with visual beat support by fRED will showcase "CTRL-V_a_hacker_story". An one hour live mixed VJ short about a young media hacker who brings downtown Berlin to glow.
The next generation short film will be showcased on the 23rd birthday of the Chaos Computer Club onto a live audio set from Sven Dhose and O. van Statten ("Der 3. Raum"). Location is the broken down alien spaceship "C-BASE" @ Rungestrasse 20 Berlin/ Kreuzberg Germany. The short will be injected for maximum blood pressure at around 1:00 am.
Don´t miss out on this great moment in the space time continuum and see how cinema converges with club culture.


23 years Chaos Computing

On Saturday September 11th 2004 the Chaos Computer Club will celebrate its 23rd birthday with a huge party. You are all invited to come and listen to the sound of mo-greens, Sven Dhose (live) und O. van Statten (live). As a premier protobeamaz:fALk und fRED will perform the final 1.0 version of "CTRL V - a_hacker_story". Worlds first vj short film performed live at around 1 am.
The pyonen we will transform the CBASE into the freaky spaceship interior that it was meant to be.
See you there:

23 years CCC (the (un)usual suspects)
September 11th 2004 opening 21:00
CBASE • Rungestrasse 20 • Berlin


Sommersafari 2004

Next Saturday the legendary Sommersafari is coming to the Spreenhagener Jungle. I will be at the DJ floor on a three massive beamer surround view installation. Get your information at the official Sommersafari Website.


LowFi Visuals galore

If you are a fan of lowfi, lowtech, blurry, noisy, easy made moving images – kommy known from the VJ central has posted an interesting link to a website that has a whole collection of those ordered by year (starting in 1991) or by genre (vj, computer, point of view and many more). There are hundreds of short clips that should keep you busy for the next days....



As part of the Emergenza Band Contest we will play at the Uncle Sallys tent at the Berlinova festival tomorrow, Friday the 11th of June around 7 p.m. Watch the big 9x9 Screen Matrix I organized so that I can play in the brightness of the early evening. If you happen to be at Berlinova already on Friday and want to see a very creative new german HipHop Band come around and celebrate with us.


Klartext Won the Emergenza Semi Finals

I don´t´know if it was a joke or not when I got the call very late last night from Mo-Greens who told me that Klartext has won the Finals for the Berlin Emergenza round. I had to ask back 4 times to make sure that he is not making fun of me while I am asleep and still this morning its hard to believe that it was not a dream.
So while I am still awaiting the absolute official confirmation I am here to say YES we seem to have won besides a great array of other bands around us. We will play next weekend at the Berlinova Festival ... which is HUGE. Still don´t know what to make of it that the jury of the largest rocknroll band contest with a guitar as its logo has let a HipHop band win. THANKS goes out to all the fans and supporters and to MoGreens for bringing the band together in first place.

PS: For Berlinova I surely hope that they will get me a better Beama and a better Screen then the shit I had at Columbiahalle last night.


Today: Klartext@Columbia Halle Berlin

Our local HipHop Band Klartext has been entitled to play at the big mighty Columbia Halle as Part of the Emergenza Band Contest. They will deliver finest german HipHop with their live Band and special visuals from myself. Start is 8.45 pm.


First Wikipedia Party

MoGreens and me are honored to play at the first ever german WikiPedia Party. I will feature some special WikiPedia Visuals and MoGreens will spin some 21st century worthy tunes. The Party is on Friday June 11th 2004 at the c-base Rungestrasse 20 Berlin-Mitte. Hope to see all you internet addicts there.


Sommer Safari Spring Time Edition

I just want to get out word that I will be performing at the Sommer Safari Springtime Edition at the ultra lovely SEZ Berlin (Landsberger Alle 77). The party will feature five floors with all various styles of electronic music (ranging from techno in the basement (with tiles on the walls) to a disco floor in the roof with a beatiful view outside on the Berlin streets. I will be on the "freaky" floor with Ascii.Disko, Sylvie Marks, Agoria and Disko. Be prepared to see a setup with multiple smaller screens a plasma display on top and a beamer :) very cool. I was at the location today and I can say that this is the place to be on saturday, been a long time since I was at such a cool location.


Klartext im Radio

The local HipHop Band Klartext will be on air tonight. The Radio Show is called RadioFunFactory and is airing at Offenener Kanal Berlin 9 pm. I will be talking about the VJ side of things concerning performing live with a HipHop Band.


3D Holographic Display For The VJs

I don´t know if that is believable yet, but if it turns out to be true I am in the right kind of bussiness. VJ HoloFX is presenting a new way to display HUGE holographic pictures in the middle of air. How he does it he does not want to say just yet but he is sooo cool in making the following statement.

Through the parties and collaborations I am making the technology available and accessiable to the VJ community first as my contribution to what i believe is a powerful new art form. In addition i like the community spirit i have seen with vj's...

So the VJ will be the first to play around with true 3dimensional holography? Like the only forward moving artform at present is getting THE most advanced presentation technic first? To say that this would give a huge boost to the VJ scene is a little understatement, this in fact could give us what we always needed - visual immersion, people standing inside visuals as they stand inside sound and right away you have the visuals taking the same place as the music, but having even more possibilities to create emotions then the music. Not only gives us this kind of technology- if properly implemented - a more prominent place inside the club but also could - if the CONTENT is good - a good shot at the traditional movie industry. The other upshot I see is that you have to make the content for it as there is virtually NO content available through TV or the sort that could be displayed easily in 3D. Since 3D content is hard to produce (either the synthetic and the natural) this will result in a shake out of the "we only copy stuff" and those who put a LOT of efford into production of the CONTENT.


Vandit Night April 2004

I am booked again for a Vandit Night April, 3rd 2004. This time the audio guest on the main floor will be Nick Warren of UK fame. Seems I am Vandits vyéj (vj that is) of choice lately - who would have thought... Of course my set is all live and under Creative Common license (if you happen to capture the screen that is ;) And I will not give out lawsuits if you want to take a photograph.


VJ haven. Black Box Club. Kill da lighting guy.

With that in place we only need a screen on top and one below and we have close to the same impact as sound. Something I always said is that we have to get on parity with the sound and that can only be if light in a club gets killed completly and if everywhere you look is visuals. An exagerration to that for the distant future is if the visuals are then in true 3d. Then you are in the middle of the visual world created by the visual mix artist. Ah dreaming. Check out the link to see what I am talking about. Shouts go out to to make an installation like this possible and thinking of bringing it to AVIT:UK04.

Launch of the world wide video mix project

Finally Peter Rubin has officially launched the Video Mix project with Gandhies words:

"Be the change that you want to see in the world"

The project is about the vjs beeing part of the media of the future. Trying to knock out the Massmedia and replacing it with innovative forms of many to many communication. The video mix project will help all people considering them self video mix artists getting connected, get funding and GET A MESSAGE. The core idea is to promote ideas that are relevant to the world at large and make them heard (or better seen). Head over to the official wiki and take a dose of alternative media of the future. I personally am very excited about this project that has been cooking for a while now. We hope we can get some momentum and give our medium a voice.


Case Guard - The DJ-VJ-LiveAct Insurance

There I trip over a website with a link to an special DJ VJ Live Act Insurance Company. If you are in the ClubArtBussiness you know how hard it can be to find a insurance that covers your stuff, in the studio on the way to your gig, covers the gig payment in case something gets stolen or lost. Well now there is that specialises exactly on this kind of problems.

Valentines Vandit Night

For those who care: I will be video performing at the Valentines Vandit Night at Casino Berlin tomorrow night Friday the 13th of February 2004. For you audio pleasure Paul van Dyk (Vandit rec, Berlin) and Gabriel & Dresden (SanFransisco US) will be there and make you smile with hit prone tranzed beatz and soundz. If you happen to like this kind of music its sure to be a good night, I will show some special "heart" sequences and and new footage for valentines day. Little world critical as always.


Andy Warhol, The Middle Class, MTV and You

What is my take in the art of making live video? What do I want to do different then the tons of advertisment agencies producing music videos. What is it that drives me forward even so there is no money involved and I am slowly starving (well not yet but I am getting there). Its my way to make clear a message, even subtle in clubs at parties. Its moving images that might change peoples thinking. Its clips that might sprinkle hope. Its things that might wake up brainwashed chemojunkies. Peter Rubin, one of the still performing video artists that has been in this territory from the beginning throughout the 60s,70s and 1980s has put his energy into a project to get some of this activism back that ones was present in this scene and was the hallmark of the peace revolution that took place in the 70s. Back then this all was new and adventurous back then and the haluzinogen szene was active, but the message was clear, put a counterweight to masscommunication, find artistic was to challenge tv consumption. Here we are in the year 2004 and the scene is ones again flourishing. We are not in the need anymore to build our own hardware, most is cheap and easily available, the revival goes far beyond anything that was here in the last 400 years (when Loius Bertrant Castel build his first ColorCembalo). We are numerours and we have electronics that are geared toward us - as seen in our own Pioneer videoturntable. Well all is fine but there is something missing that was there all throughout. The message and the search for it. In the early times the audiovisual artists tried to search for the perfect connection of color and sound then form and sound. When they found out that there might be a deep psychological connection but no scientific one they experimented and tried to find a message, with there hardware (first portable video synthesizer 1969), with their pictures (halizunogen to free the mind late 60s). Then came commercialisation and this is where I leave it to Peter Rubin with his and our videomix project to explain what goes wrong and where we – the Visual Artist Rebells – will need to go instead.

In short, it’s time for the people to take back their vision! What are needed now are not clever new formulas designed to divide the mass into more efficient units of predictable behavior, but initiatives which can replace the present commercial manipulation of global identities; What is needed now is a new awareness, a new courage and belief, a new breed of truly independent young visionaries who will forsake the slave-like dependence on commercial financing and compromised production; What are needed now are initiatives that will not only satisfy a small, radical club of underground egoists, but will develop a self-financing work structure supported by and serving the global community; What is needed now is a visual renaissance born from the heart of the underground spirit, which is global and technological, and independent and free, in order to freshly inspire music and culture and bring the vision of the people back to the global family.

PeteR Rubin Amsterdam, June 1995

Andy Warhol, The Middle Class, MTV and You at


When VJs become VJs and VideoPerformanceArtists become VideoLiveActs

ou know I tend to use the term VJ to describe my art as many others in my field do. Its because we all are too lazy to explain to every person who walks up to us in a club what we do and VJ has been picked up by the media. If you are not following the "VJ scene" all along there was very heated debate about the term to give us about 2-3 years ago (yes that short). In the end we kinda settled with that and it has stick (with little debates in between from now and then). The problem with the term is that most of us are not like DJs playing prerecorded Records and trying to pitch adjust them to beat. Most of us are more like a live act musician - carefully crafting out our visuals over the course of the night (loops based software based etc just like different breeds of live act musicians). Its really like playing an instrument having control over almost all different aspects of our visuals, its not just pitch adjusting but recutting grouping colorizing generating etc etc.
That has two origins, first there is this long history of the synesthic art field (first mentioned by early philosopher like plato) with a boom in the 70s and 90s. Its has always been about generating the visuals to the music live. And then there is a simple fact: there was no such thing as a record player for video (yes there was one experimental one but it never really went into mass production).
The second reason has just vanished. Pioneer is brining out a pitch adjustable DVD player the DJV X1 Master. The first reason is the cause of a split in the Live Video Performance scene - which is ultimately not bad.

So what is my personal take in short? VJ´s become VJ´s or maybe even AVJ´s replacing the DJ in the long time frame by playing AVJ singles that have a beatsynced visual set on top of the prerecorded music that can be mixed just like a record. That is easy to do and to learn and the Pioneer unit will lead the way to this (dvd sound finally replacing the vinyl, as it has more audio information then a vinyl and cd combined, so it really does sound better?!), and then there will be those of us (like me) who would still like to do it all live and rather look like a dork behind a lappy in front of da big crowd but retaining the qualities of a true live set by really beeing able to change something. I would even suggest that the latter form is grouping up with the audio live acts and not even playing anymore at normal record spinning events as those can be fully suited by the AVJs.
The best thing of all is that those with the skillz and the knowledge now can finally produce for this strong market ones it is in place, you know produce AVJ singles (coupled with the audio guys).

And finally let me make one thing clear. It is harder to do a good visual mix then to do a good audio mix even so some things might look good there is a quality in it and that is not learned overnight.


Build your own LCD projector is offering a transcript for $19.90 that explains on how to build your own beama. Yes they claim 1800 lumen for the current version that utilizes a 15 inch screen and a lightbulb that costs around $50 and lasts for 20.000 hours (in comparisment a lightbulb for a commercial projector costs between $300 and $600 and lasts for up to 2000 hours). You need to be able to make a little wooden box to hold the projecting gear. The samples on the website are very promising. A upgraded version will be available to paying customers and will feature a 2200 lumen 7" lcd version. Great stuff.


VDMXX 4.0 review on the net

jeanpoole has a review of VDMXX 4.0 on his Blog. Check it out.


AVIT Uk Brighton Photos

There are some insightfull photos from AVIT Uk available at the site

if you want to get a visual scope on AVIT Uk 2003 you can head over to the site to get some cool, funny, lovely photos.


This photo shows fRED (the redghost on the left side) and me
performing with 5T3PH4N aka mo-greens at the Brighton TikiRiks on saturday night.

Thanks to Johnny DeKam from for shooting and forwarding this to us.


AVIT Brighton 2003 is over

AVIT Brighton 2003 is over and it was - as usual - a lot of fun

Slowly returning my brain from the Brighton VJ conference. It was the meeting of the usual suspects with some new faces and some surprising guest. In general it was a great meet and great. The conference program was well layed out and the ShowNights had a good concept.

So no fun without bad and I think there were some problems with the choosen venue. The brighton center was just to corporate centric for me and I would have felt better in an abondoned building with some dirt. To put the MassJam/MultiRig in the convention hall was probably even a worse decission. No spirit in this building and throwing the visuals on the wall with every projector differently calibrated and not all beamer not straight and some pictures over doors and a much to bright room did make me really happy that I was not performing there. The DJ and the Soundsystem had again the centerstage in a event that was to promote the VJs. The VJs themself where caged in in the middle of the dancefloor. Downstairs was much better Audio and Visual Act on the same level, great beamer installation but the size of the venue was too large and there was simply not enough audience for a real joyfull evening. I do not want to start about the drug policies of that party. People come to Berlin to see what Partying is about :/

As for the saturday night I personally had a very joyfull gig with fRED and mo-greens in the TikiRik. Besides some problems with the rigging (Lucidhouse could not set his PCee into PAL mode -> get a mac please) and the resulting bluescreens and the late coming Robotfunk who was completely beside himself as he has not slept the night before - the evening was a little success in all. I love those small bar like clubs. But why in the hell do the bars close at 11pm when they are full and have lots of visitors that pay for drinks. :/

The later night went not so well. We tried to get into the Pressure Point and this other club whose name I forgot - this was around 12:00 pm and both clubs where full and noone was allowed in. We went back to the hotel to get drunk with Vodka. Quite frustrating to travel for 1400 km and not be allowed into the clubs even when you have performed in one of them for free.

I want to positively point out the LAPTOP JAM on Thursday. One of those occasions where you think that in general collaboration is the way to go. It is so extremely inspiring to see your own visuals mixed with others and have the music react live to them as the visuals to the music react live.... LOVELY also this was the only place where there was an open non egoistic atmosphere where you could actually talk about the work .... :7

In general I respect the hard work the organisers have put into that event. In general things have worked out. There was no police popping in, there was enough equipment for the conference panels enough beamers and a gaffaless installation at the massjam. But its all about the details and the event failed in about every detail for me. The only thing that made me cheer up were the brilliant talented people at this event. I had lots and lots of good person to person talks and would like to submit that the whole experience of AVIT is about meeting and for a next AVIT this should be the focus point (lounges during the day where you can relax with some music and chill with your fellow VJs, bar nights in preparation for the nightly gigs - one home relaxation center where you meet up, a SAY HELLO panel to open the conference etc etc..)

Clapping hands for the work done - but we have to evolve this!

As for a visuals critic. I just want to give the girls a BIG THUMBS UP. lara and nix from simplistic just stole the show from the guys with their ultra lovely visuals with social and political content.

For more discusssion about AVIT Brighton 2003 please visit:

VDMXX(4.0) is out

After months of betatesting VDMXX (4.0) has made its debut

and it is great.Modular. Its saving presets and in general has all the features you would want in a live Video Mixing Application. The SDK will follow shortly (the release was delayed because vidvox crew wants to implements MACROS - how cool is that :).

I had a very ultra lovely VDMXX session with Johnny DeKam (founder of Vidvox) in Brighton for a AVIT VJ Conference. I finally got to meet the guy after 3 years of constant email contact and feature suggestions sessions. Sitting next to him for about 2 hours and just clicking throught the program made us both aware that there are totally different approaches to this program. Great that the demands of our styles are meet with this program. Looping vs. Scratching was the name of the game and it inspired me a lot. I hope I inspired mr DeKam as well at least a tiny bit....

Get the demo or a license at:


The AVIT UK Brighton 2003 Schedule available

If you want to know what workshop is when - the schedule is finally available

If you want to know what workshop is when - the schedule is finally available: