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A one hour Light Painting DVD by Bill Ham, the originator of the 1960’s San Francisco Rock Dance Light Shows.
A one hour Light Painting DVD by Bill Ham, the originator of the 1960’s San Francisco Rock Dance Light Shows.
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117 backers pledged $8,999 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$8,999

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Bill Ham, popularly known as the originator of the 1960’s San Francisco Rock Dance Light Shows, has been creating Light Paintings for over 50 years. His work brought kinetics to abstract expressionism and epitomizes spontaneous improvisation. To date Bill Ham’s art has always been viewed in live, theatrical environments requiring the audience’s presence. This Kickstarter project makes this powerful art form available for your personal viewing any time.

Bill Ham painting with his instrument: the transparent overhead projector (OHP).
Bill Ham painting with his instrument: the transparent overhead projector (OHP).
The transparent overhead projector lens system allows for the direct application of painting materials, enabling hands on, live time creation by the artist.
The transparent overhead projector lens system allows for the direct application of painting materials, enabling hands on, live time creation by the artist.
Screenshots of Light Painting. The image on the screen that is being recorded with a digital camera, is a composite of one or several simultaneous OHP images.
Screenshots of Light Painting. The image on the screen that is being recorded with a digital camera, is a composite of one or several simultaneous OHP images.
Screenshots of Light Painting.
Screenshots of Light Painting.
Screenshots of Light Painting
Screenshots of Light Painting
Screenshots of Light Painting
Screenshots of Light Painting
Screenshots of Light Painting
Screenshots of Light Painting
Example of home/ personal viewing
Example of home/ personal viewing

History

In the early 1960’s Bill "managed" 4 rooming houses on Pine Street; which was the neighborhood before the Haight Ashbury. The original 2111 Pine Street, “The Dog House”, and two other rooming houses were the epicenter of the budding cultural and social awakening. The residents included many of the founders of what became the San Francisco Psychedelic 60's bands including Big Brother and The Holding Co. with Janis Joplin, The Charlatans and others. The founders of the Family Dog, including Alton Kelly, one of the original poster artists, early Marijuana couriers, chemists and San Francisco’s own “Goldfinger” could all be found in the neighborhood. At Bill's Pine Street Studio he developed Light Shows amidst this uniquely San Franciscan psychedelic movement. The Light Shows at his studio were attended by friends, Zen Monks, and others from the "straight" world. Soon the Fillmore and Avalon Ballrooms were established nearby. Bill’s original Light Shows at the Avalon Ballroom created a 360 degree all-encompassing multimedia environment so that the early San Francisco Rock Dances were the ultimate in participatory Dance-Art-Theater.

 The bands at the early Avalon Dances included among others: The Grateful Dead, Quicksilver Messenger Service, The Jefferson Airplane, The Great Society, The Charlatans, Big Brother and the Holding Company with Janis Joplin and many, many others. This symbiosis between music, art and participants was a catalyst for the major cultural transformations to come and Bill Ham’s Light Shows established the standard for the multitude of Light Shows that followed. His sold out presentations at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art introduced Light Shows to the establishment. For more than 50 years in the U.S. and Europe, Bill has practiced his art of spontaneous projected imagery: kinetic abstract expressionism. This DVD will allow Bill's unique art to be viewed in your own home at your own convenience, for the first time.

Please see Bill’s website for a more complete history at billhamlights.com

Overhead Projectors from 60s
Overhead Projectors from 60s
Overhead Projectors
Overhead Projectors

 1960's Posters

Lights by Bill Ham
Lights by Bill Ham

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Book

I Want to Take You Higher: The Psychedelic Era 1965-1969 (Rock & Roll Hall of Fame & Museum) 
by James Henke  (Author) , Charles Perry (Author) , Barry Miles (Author)
San Francisco, California, U.S.A.: Chronicle Books Llc (1997)

The Summer of Love 
by Gene Anthony  (Author)
Milbrae, California: Celestial Arts Publishing, 1980

Summer of Love: Art of the Psychedelic EraChristoph Grunenberg, Tate Gallery (Liverpool, GB)
Tate Publishing, Limited, 2005

The Haight-Ashbury: A History Paperback
Wenner Books, 1st edition (September 1, 2005)

Film

Temples Of Rock 
(TV Movie documentary, 2003)
Directed by Carlo Gennarelli, Hosted by Ray Manzarek

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Bill Ham Light Show 40th Anniversary Posters

Bill Ham Light Show 40th Anniversary Silkscreen Posters, 36" x 24" Posters, by  Chuck Sperry & Firehouse, Stanley Mouse, David Singer, Dennis Loren, and Alton Kelley
Bill Ham Light Show 40th Anniversary Silkscreen Posters, 36" x 24" Posters, by Chuck Sperry & Firehouse, Stanley Mouse, David Singer, Dennis Loren, and Alton Kelley

Risks and challenges

Once this project is Kickstarter funded we anticipate completing the DVD within 3 months. At that time we will honor all pledges. If for any unforeseen reason (such as the obvious: earthquake, sickness etc) we should run overschedule you will be informed.
At the time of DVD completion all pledges will be honored.

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    Thank you very much for supporting us. Every contribution counts.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    • Bill Ham Lights Original Wallpaper
    • Bill Ham Lights Original Screen Saver
    • Thank you letter from Bill Ham

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    • Light Painting DVD

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    • Bill Ham Lights T-shirt

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    • Bill Ham Lights 40th Anniversary Original Silkscreen Poster (36" x 24")
    • Screen Credit

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    • Invitation for Studio Live Show in SF, with guests

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Funding period

- (40 days)