CVM Symposium 2018
Exploring & Preserving Visual Music

18 talks/presentations, 5 screenings, 2 receptions!

Paul Fletcher, The Drive to Work, courtesy the artist

Join us in Wine Country...

The CVM Symposium 2018: Exploring and Preserving Visual Music will explore the theories, histories and practices of Visual Music. It features two days of talks and presentations from international scholars, artists, students, curators and researchers (August 14-15), plus a final half day of special sessions. Set in Sonoma County’s wine country, the symposium also features several special events.

A series of 5 screenings occur throughout, featuring historical and contemporary visual music works. The symposium provides a forum to share research, examine the history of visual music as it relates to other arts, and encourage discussion of the future of our field through preservation and education.

CVM is pleased to present this symposium in association with Sonoma State University at their Rohnert Park campus. The Thursday closing event is presented in collaboration with Sebastopol Center for the Arts.

Thomas Wilfred with Lumia projection, Courtesy Yale University


We are pleased to welcome scholars, researchers, curators, and students from Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Switzerland, the UK, and US.

Still from Mary Ellen Bute's Mood Contrasts, © Center for Visual Music

Program Preview

The Symposium features talks on audiovisual art, music visualization, color organs, visual music and art history, Oskar Fischinger, James Whitney, Norman McLaren, John Cage, Teaching Visual Music, 1960s psychedelic light shows, mapping musical scores, hybrid analog/digital performance techniques, sonification, oscillocopes and preservation. Plus special video spotlights on Fischinger's Lumigraph, Mary Ellen Bute, and documentation of performances, installations and events.

Still from Oskar Fischinger's Allegretto, © Center for Visual Music

Screenings | Events

Screenings, special closing event, receptions and more. 5 screenings feature restorations, new discoveries, rare prints, premieres of new work, and an Oskar Fischinger Retrospective.

Special thanks

Special thanks to our Sponsors and Supporters: Film Studies at SSU, Kit Smyth Basquin, David Magness, Brad and Mary Glanden, Timothy Finn, Chris Harvey, Marco Ferraro, Mark Rowan-Hull, James Middleton, and Anonymous.

Thanks to Jackson Family Wines, Oliver's Market Cotati, Gosfilmofond of Russia, Len Lye Foundation, Ngā Taonga, Govett-Brewster/Len Lye Centre, Conner Family Trust and Kohn Gallery, Bananas at Large, and Creative Sonoma.

Please contact us for sponsorship opportunities for future symposiums.

Fischinger's graphic notated score, courtesy CVM

About Center for Visual Music

CVM is a 501(c)3 nonprofit archive devoted to visual music, experimental animation and abstract media. CVM's archives house the world's largest collection of visual music resources. The collections include film/video/digital media and related papers, books, monographs, artwork, animation process materials, documentation, photography, equipment and artifacts. CVM owns the films and papers of Oskar Fischinger, plus many animation drawings, and the original research collection of animation historian William Moritz. Film preservation is a core part of CVM's mission. CVM's films, programs, and presentations are regularly featured at museum exhibitions, cinematheques, universities, archives and symposia worldwide.

CONTACT US: cvmaccess(at)
Box 39527, Los Angeles, CA 90039