Optical Poetry 


The Life and Work of Oskar Fischinger by Dr. William Moritz. The result of over 30 years of research on this visionary abstract filmmaker and painter.

Optical Poetry, 1st generation, partitur

Dr. William Moritz's long-awaited, definitive biography of Oskar Fischinger is the result of over 30 years of research on this visionary abstract filmmaker and painter. In addition to Moritz's comprehensive biography, it includes numerous photographs in colour and black and white (many never before published), statements by Oskar Fischinger about his films, a newly created extensive filmography, and a selected bibliography. Optical Poetry is an essential resource for students, scholars, educators, curators, film archivists and cinema lovers worldwide.


"Oskar Fischinger is one of the greatest artists of the 20th century, embracing the abstraction that became the major art movement of that century, and exploring the new technology of the cinema to open abstract painting into a new Visual Music that performs in liquid time. If he is less well known than some of the other major artists, it is precisely because he was buffeted about by the wars, Nazism, the communist witch-hunts and other phenomena of his century. Here is a glimpse of his life and works” (William Moritz)


Source: John Libbey Publishing



ISBN-10: 0253216419

ISBN-13: 978-0253216410



Optical Poetry, 1st generation, partiturOptical Poetry, 1st generation, partitur


Oskar Fischinger (1900-1967): Experiments in Cinematic Abstraction (2012) edited by Cindy Keefer and Jaap Guldemond. This new monograph explores the position of Oskar Fischinger's work within the international avant-garde. The book examines his animation and painting, his use of music, his experiences in Hollywood, the Lumigraph, visual music theories, and his influence on today's filmmakers, artists and animators. The book also contains previously unpublished documents including texts by Oskar Fischinger himself, and unshot animation drawings. Essays compiled and commissioned by editor Cindy Keefer include new research and texts by Jean-Michel Bouhours, Jeanpaul Goergen, Ilene Susan Fort, James Tobias, Cindy Keefer, Richard Brown, Paul Hertz, Joerg Jewanski, and more. (Center for Visual Music)

Sons et Lumières (2004) – A History of Sound in the Art of the 20th Century (in French) by Marcella Lista and Sophie Duplaix published by the Centre Pompidou for the excellent Paris exhibition in September 2004 until January 2005.

Curated by the Pompidou’s Sophie Duplaix with the Louvre’s Marcella Lista, the show required a good three or four hours to absorb, with its bombardment of sensory and intellectual input, including painting, sound sculpture, sound/light automata, film and video, and room-size installations. (Frieze Magazine)

The Film Work of Norman McLaren (2007) by Terence Dobson approaches the puzzles that are set by the film work of Norman McLaren. It is divided into three parts, based on chronological divisions in McLaren's life. The first part deals with McLaren's formative years in Scotland and England and examines his early exposure to the social, artistic and institutional influences that were to shape his filmic output. The second part deals with McLaren's maturation in the USA and Canada. The third part examines specific issues in relation to McLaren and his work and as such is concerned principally with his mature output. (John Libbey Publishing)



Visual Music: Synaesthesia in Art and Music Since 1900 (2005) traces the history of a revolutionary idea: that fine art should attain the abstract purity of music. Over the past one hundred years some of the most adventurous modern and contemporary artists have explored unorthodox means to invent a kinetic, non-representational art modeled upon pure instrumental music. (Amazon)

Len Lye (1901-1980) was an experimental film-maker, poet, painter, kinetic sculptor, eccentric and ebullient personality. Len Lye was one of the few filmmakers working in inter-war Britain to have established an international reputation in experimental filmmaking. Though his British oeuvre was by no means limited to the making of abstract films, this was the area that most interested Len Lye and he has sometimes been viewed as the only genuine avant-garde filmmaker of this period. (screenonline)

Audio-Vision: Sound on Screen (1994) by French critic and composer Michel Chion reassesses audiovisual media since the revolutionary 1927 debut of recorded sound in cinema, shedding crucial light on the mutual relationship between sound and image in audiovisual perception. (Colombia University Press)

Mycenae-Alpha (1978) composed by Iannis Xenakis on the UPIC system, presents an example of the relationship between graphic image and sonic structure in electroacoustic music. The graphic score of Mycenae-Alpha provides a basis for an analysis of the work’s form and a guide to its characteristic sonic features. Mycenae-Alpha is also the first work to be composed entirely on the UPIC system. The UPIC is a tool for the graphic composition of electroacoustic music which was first developed in the late 1970s by Iannis Xenakis and his staff at the Center for Studies in Mathematical and Automated Music in Paris. (Ronald Squibbs)

Audio.Visual - On Visual Music and Related Media (2009) by Cornelia Lund and Holger Lund (Eds.) is divided into two sections: the first deals with the academic discussion on the subject of visual music; the second introduces contemporary paradigms of audio-visual praxis in brief presentations and contextualises them. Apart from being a guide in the historical sense, this new volume provides theoretical approaches to understanding and making visual music. (Fluctuating Images)