The New York Stereoscopic Association

Dedicated to the Art,

Science & Enjoyment of

Stereography in every form


NYSA JUNE EXTRAVAGANZA CELEBRATES

101 YEARS OF 3D FILM

The NYSA once again ended a great season of meetings and events with a celebration of the anniversary of the first 3D films shown.  This has become an annual event for the group and is more of a 3D festival and exhibition than it is a meeting.  Once again our friends Tom, Michael and John from Magnetic 3D hosted us at their WeWork headquarters in Lower Manhattan, this time in their event space on the ground floor.

 

John J. Zelenka, president of the NYSA, welcomed the crowd and outlined the evening's lineup.  Magnetic 3D's Tom Zerega excited the group by showing off Magnetic 3D's new Emersa™ Series Glasses-Free 3D tablet.  He also offered all NYSA members a generous $100 discount!  The power packed evening was off and running. 

 

This year marks the inaugural presentation of the "Murray Lerner Award for Service and Contribution to the 3D Community" to namesake Murray Lerner.  Murray, who could not be present, did tape a 3D interview the week before with John Zelenka and myself.  We began the night of 3D viewing by showing this interview, a brief thank-you message from Murray and the popular video from last year's celebration, 100 Years of 3D Film.  The award itself was designed and constructed by NYSA member and frequent contributor Ilicia Benoit and will soon be presented to Murray Lerner at a private ceremony.  Only a small fraction of the interview was shown at the event with the remaining segments expected to comprise a new interview series that will be shown on the NYSA's 3D Crave outlet.

 

Strange Attractors by Louis Markoya was shown next.  This stunning 3D graphics video captivated the audience with its stereo hypnosis.  Louis answered questions after and then gave a 2D slide show about his collaborations with artist Salvador Dalí.

 

Our friend Martina Mrongovius from The Center for Holographic Arts, or the Holocenter, gave a presentation on the slate of events this summer at their new house on Governor's Island.  The NYSA and its members have supported the Holocenter's efforts on Governor's Island for years now and this summer is no exception.  If you are looking for a brief getaway on a weekend over the summer, head to Governors Island to see a great display of holograms and 3D related imagery.

 

Denny Daniel, founder of the Museum of Interesting Things, and a great friend of the NYSA, brought a huge display of artifacts representing the history of 3D and displayed it in a timeline.  Basically, Denny presented a vast display of 3D gadgets from the Victorian age to present that were all hands-on.  During the ceremonies he presented John Zelenka with one of his classic “new acquisitions.”  Denny always saves the pleasure of opening recent purchases by the Museum of Interesting Things for guests and friends of the museum.  On this night John opened a rare 3D Brownie camera in front of the curious crowd.

 

Ken Dunkley, a dedicated NYSA member from Philadelphia, made the trip north to give the keynote lecture and workshop on his 3-DVG technique that explains, "How to use your fingers to turn any color magazine picture into 3D."  Members were able to test his method at his stereo work station.

 

It would be irresponsible for me not to mention that we were well served the entire evening with edibles.  Besides a wine/beer bar with a buffet of snacks, we were treated to delicious macaroon ice cream sandwiches.

 

Though the NYSA will not hold regular "3D Wednesday" meetings for July and August, please do not think that we are inactive.  As mentioned above, all summer you will have a great chance to go to Governor’s Island to see the Holocenter installation.  As well, Rosalie Chandler will be guiding fans to 3D movies all summer for their enjoyment and review.

 

Thank you all for a great year.  September will be here before you know it.

 

E. James Smith

Vice President/Curator

 

NYSA’s May 18, 2016 Meeting

NYSA’s May 18, 2016 meeting: The Vietnam War in 3D and a Few Surprises

Midtown Manhattan’s plush Dolby 88 Theatre was the location of the special Memorial Day meeting of the New York Stereoscopic Association.  On Wednesday, May 18, 2016 a large crowd gathered to view the Tom Jennings film, Sky Soldier: The Vietnam War in 3D, a 48-minute documentary containing Stereo Realist™ slides shot by Joel Glenn.  Major Glenn was a young helicopter pilot from Florida who had a passion for stereography.  The film chronicles Joel's time growing up on his family farm, his two tours in Vietnam and his later life.

 

Joel Glenn's remarkable collection contains the only known 3D photos taken of American troops during the Vietnam War.  The stereo slides were sent to his wife, Judy, along with audiotapes of his voice describing the scenes in the slides.  The film is narrated by Bill Paxton and includes music by Crosby Stills & Nash and Eric Burden and the Animals.

 

Five members of the Glenn family, including widow Judy Glenn, traveled by train from northern Florida to New York to view the screening and take in some New York sites.  Denny Daniel’s Museum of Interesting Things provided a pop-up exhibit of artifacts from the Vietnam era which garnered a Q&A session with the audience.

 

There was a  technical challenge with the theatre’s system and NYSA President John J. Zelenka asked the crowd to take a break in the lobby while the problem was resolved.  To John’s and everyone’s surprise, there was a big surprise party waiting outside to honor his 60th birthday (Orbit as he calls it).  Helen Zelenka and Rosalie Chandler spent weeks secretly organizing this surprise party to coincide with the screening and it couldn’t have been more appreciated or well timed.  We were eventually informed that we would only be able to see Sky Soldier in 2D.  Most of the crowd was able to stay and engaged in a lively Q&A with the Glenn Family, with John  moderating.

 

All was not lost, however, and the Dolby 88 was able to show the full program of shows two days later and many people were able to return.  The other two videos shown were 100 Years of 3D Film, produced by the NYSA and One Night in Hell, produced by Brian May’s London Stereoscopic Company.  The Glenn family returned and were grateful to view Sky Soldier on a large movie screen, and this time in 3D.  They also enjoyed seeing the other two 3D videos and once again stayed for a comprehensive Q&A with the audience.

 

John Zelenka gave the Glenn family a personal tour of New York City and brought them to a French restaurant on their last night in New York.  The Glenns returned to Florida with fond memories and many new friends from the NYSA.  Don’t worry if you missed it, the NYSA will be showing Sky Soldier again in the fall to honor Veteran’s Day.

 

E. James Smith- Vice President and Curator

 

News and Events


STEREOSCOPIC FILMS SHOWN

By E. James Smith


June 16, 2015

 

Times Square location where the Astor Theatre once stood.

 

On June 10, 2015 the New York Stereoscopic Association (NYSA), itself celebrating an anniversary, commemorated the 100th anniversary of the first presentation of 3D films to an audience by hosting a marathon 4-hour special event. 

 

Hosted by John J. Zelenka and emceed by Denny Daniel, of the Museum of Interesting Things, the evening was virtually a 3D exposition.  The crowd was greeted with special 100th anniversary commemorative postcards, buttons and T-shirts as they entered the Astor Ballroom.  On display was an amazing “Free-D” (glasses free) screen by Magnetic3D showing stereo slides submitted by NYSA members.  Countless 3D artifacts from Daniel’s traveling history museum were available to handle and examine throughout the night.

 

The program began with an informal meet-and-greet session where audience members got to know each other.  Filmmakers and musicians chatted with scientists and technicians, all with some fascination and love for 3D.  Mr. Zelenka opened the presentation by reading a letter from 3D filmmaker and enthusiast Martin Scorsese that he wrote to commemorate the celebration.

 

“3D takes movies into the future by looking back to the origins of cinema and beyond, further back to sculpture and painting and the need to represent the world in motion and in depth,” Scorsese wrote.

 

Appropriate words for an event celebrating a century of cinema technology; 3D or not.

 

Pierre Lamourex of  Cinemusica was on hand to show a clip from the mesmerizing 3D music film he made with his brother François called Orchestrion, featuring the music of Pat Metheny.  “Orchestrion” is a generic term for a mechanical device that plays music.  Taking over an abandoned Brooklyn church and constructing his massive orchestrion inside, Metheny was filmed playing numerous pieces that began simply and worked their way up to a brilliant crescendo. Orchestrion was originally released theatrically and is currently available on Blu-ray. 

 

Next up was Ikuo Nakamura of Hololab with his award-winning short film Atmosphere, a brilliant time-lapse of sky and nature.  The ethereal music score was by Nakamura’s usual collaborator, Hayes Greenfield. 

 

Following Nakamura was Bob Furmanek, director of 3D Film Archive, presenting several clips from his Blu-ray, 3D Rarities3D Rarities is a meticulous collection of restored 3D films from the 1920s through 1960s.  The films truly offered a rare stereo glance into these decades when 3D was infrequently produced.

 

During the intermission presenters mingled with the audience and answered many questions. Daniel continued to demonstrate his curious gadgets from the Museum of Interesting Things.  Eventually he signaled the crowd back to their seats with a blast from his antique car horn.

 

The second half of the presentation began with an informative talk about laser 3D projection by the co-founder of the Laser Illuminated Projector Association Bill Beck from BARCO projectors, also known as “Mr. Laser”.  Clearly explaining how the laser projectors will help improve often-dim stereo projection, Beck held a brief

Q & A session after his presentation.

 

Furmanek returned with two more clips, one of a famed Rocky Marciano boxing match and another of an early 3D effort by Francis Ford Coppola.  Nakamura then presented another piece, his visually stunning Aurora Borealis 3D, fresh off its inclusion in the BAMcinématek series “3D in the 21st Century.”  Lamourex stunned the crowd with an electrifying call-and-response performance by Joe Satriani from his acclaimed 3D concert film Joe Satriani: Saturated, a live concert film shot in Montreal.

 

The finale of the night was a very special video contribution from Brian May’s Unanico Group/London Stereoscopic Company called One Night in Hell, based on diableries.  Diableries are a series of dioramas made in France in the 1860s depicting satirical scenes set in hell, which were widely distributed as stereo cards.  Jason Jameson and James Hall animated a batch of these cards and May wrote the score that was performed by a Czech orchestra. It was a poignant conclusion to a special night and the overflowing crowd showed their appreciation with roaring applause.

 

Just before the festive night ended, Denny and John lead the entire group in singing “Happy Birthday” with a real cake and candles appearing in 3D on the screen.  “Happy Birthday 3D Film,” the crowd sang, as the candles blew out and everyone cheered.

 

The New York Dramatic Mirror article from 1915 vividly describes the reaction of the first audience attending a 3D movie:

 

“Figures of the players and the furniture were seen in all three dimensions and the effect, to one accustomed to the ordinary pictures, can not be described.”

 

One hundred years later, this crowd clearly agreed.  3D film allows us to travel to the past, stirs emotions and transports us to exotic locations in ways that still, “can not be described.”∆

 

 Be sure to connect it to your network and subscribe to 3DCrave. Yes, great indepentent 3D productions are alive and well. Visit the NYSA's new program there called 'Time Travel Theatre'. Support 3D TV today!

NYSA Lecture Series Awards
The NYSA expresses our appreciation to everyone who gave so freely of their valuable time. And the Center for Holographic Arts and it's staff for supporting us. And of course, NYSA  Co-founders James Smith and William Meredith for shooting 3D video and making sure everything ran smoothly!
The NSA 2014 Digital Imaging Showcase on Nvidia

This year, the awards went to:

Place

Name

Image

1

Oleg Vorobyoff

Silverton at Night

2

Faramarz Ghahremanifar

Afghanistan Girl

3

Lee Pratt

Fishing in Colorado