Polyvision

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Polyvision by Josef Svoboda and Jaroslav Frič (1967) "presented a panorama of Czech industrial life in an eight-minute film that used twenty slide projectors, ten ordinay motion picture screens and five rotating projection screens. While the subjects were usual industrial operations like hydro-electric power plants, steel rolling mills and textile mills, the visual material was presented in an unusual way. The screens where unconventional in that during the show they would move around: backwards, forwards, even sideways. Then there were other projection surfaces formed by steel hoops that spun around so rapidly that they seemed to constitute solid spheres and yet they were not solid." (Source: Michael Bielicky, «Prague–A Place of Illusionists,» in: Jeffrey Shaw, Peter Weibel (eds), Future Cinema. The cinematic Imaginary after Film, exhib. cat., The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA/ London, 2003, p. 99.)

Briefly, the Polyvision was the total conversion of a medium-size, rather high room into a film and slide environment. Mirrors, moving cubes and prisms, projections both from outside the space and from within the cubes, images which seem to move through space as well as cover the walls, ceilings, and floors all built the feeling of a full space of great flexibility. The 9 1/2-minute presentation used 11 film projectors, 28 slide-projectors, and a 10-track computer tape for programming. The material itself was banal-an account of Czech industry; but, of course, more "artistic" or "meaningful" material could be used in the system. No live performers participated. [1]


Subworks (Expo Montreal, 28 apr 1967)
  • Polyvision: a celebration of Czechoslovak industrial technology. Author: Josef Svoboda. Complexly programmed film and slide projections onto a wall of varied screens and 3D elements (some kinetic), including angled mirrors. Director: Svoboda, Josef: Pflug,

Miroslav; Berhnek, J.

  • The Creation of the World: the evolution from primal matter to advanced technologies. Author: Radok, Emil; Svoboda, Josef; Pflug, Miroslav. A wall of 11 2 kinetic cubes; each took rear slide projections from two programmed carousels mounted within each cube. Director: Radok, Emil.
  • Symphony: textile weaving; and the making of an atomic reactor. Author: Svoboda, Josef. Two displays using hi-tech slide and cinema projections on various projections surfaces, some kinetic. Director: Svoboda, Josef.
  • Transformations (Promeny): the effects of industrial pollution on unspoiled nature. Author: Novotný, J. Images of industrial waste contrasted with those of unspoiled nature were seen on a large scrim and a mosaic of 78 projection screens, respectively. Director: Svoboda, Josef.


http://www.medienkunstnetz.de/works/polyvision/