John Adamczyk, known as J-Walt – a performer, interactive designer, filmmaker, graphic artist and composer – will present Spontaneous Fantasia on the Charles and Helen Reichert Planetarium dome, on Saturday, January 3, 2015, in shows at 5:30 and 8:00 p.m. This live, one-hour, virtual-reality performance is a new art form that combines aspects of animation, dance, music, theater and architecture.
Tickets: adults $15; seniors (62 and older) and children under 12, $12.
J-Walt has been at the forefront of interactive art for more than two decades, has greatly expanded the uses of computer animation, and has performed for audiences in Canada, Europe and the United States. J-Walt draws improvised virtual realities as part of his unique one-man show, using two new computer interfaces. One is the Razer Hydra, a two-handed wand interface for drawing figures and navigating a three-dimensional space. The other is the Anitar (animation guitar), his new invention for drawing in space.
The link below leads to a brief video, in which J-Walt explains how he uses the interfaces to create Spontaneous Fantasia. The animation in this clip was created in real-time during Spontaneous Fantasia shows. The landscapes, dancing figures, animated geometries, and sea creatures – and original music – are all part of J-Walt’s performance repertoire:
J-Walt said he takes literally the meaning of the word “animation.” “I make images come to life,” he said. “I use my drawing skills to give directions to the computer programs I write. I aim to capture the sensitivity of gesture, but I also use techniques that amplify and augment the gestures. The wave of an arm or the stroke of a pen is my foundation, but the effect is much more. My creative process shifts continually among painting, programming, composing music and performing. My goal is to create a wholly integrated experience for the eye, ear and mind.”
The Los Angeles Times wrote that Spontaneous Fantasia is “indescribably delicious… Adamczyksays his art is almost like puppetry, but really his Spontaneous Fantasia is beyond words. Animated trippy landscapes, gestural shapes moving through 3-D graphic spaces — oh, just go.”
In 2006, J-Walt shared with two colleagues a Technical Achievement Award at the Oscars for the design and development of the Aerohead motion-control camera head and the J-Viz Pre-Visualization system. He received a Themed Entertainment Award in 2003 for a digital puppetry attraction, one of his many digital puppet projects. He also has produced location-based video games for Sony. J-Walt was a founding member of Disney’s VR studio, which created a state-of-the-art, virtual-reality experience for Disney’s EPCOT center in 1995.
A 1988 graduate of the Experimental Animation department of CalArts, J-Walt’s movies and images have been exhibited at Ars Electronica, SIGGRAPH, MOCA, Sinking Creek Film Festival and the New York Animation Festival. In his spare time, he organizes the Los Angeles Abstract Movie Workshop. He lives in Altadena, California.