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Glow FlowGlowFlow was an early responsive sound and light environment. In a dark room, four neon tubes are mounted, in order to create the misleading impression that the room is narrowing and sloping. At certain positions there are pressure sensors, which initiate a choreography of light and sound when triggered by movements from the audience. The accustomed perception of spaces is slightly disturbed and it was observed that some visitors tried to find out how the rule system of the installation is working. The work was conceived by Dan Sandin, Jerry Erdman, and Richard Venezsky and exhibited at the Memorial Union Gallery of the University of Wisconsin in April 1969.[1]

As Myron Krueger noted, “glowing lines of light defined an illusory space. The display was accomplished by pumping phosphorescent particles through transparent tubes attached to the gallery walls. These tubes passed through opaque columns concealing lights which excited the phosphors. A pressure sensitive pad in front of each of the six columns enabled the computer to respond to footsteps by lighting different tubes or changing the sounds generated by a Moog synthesizer or the origin of these sounds. […] Delays were introduced between the detection of a participant and the computer’s response so that the contemplative mood of the environment would not be destroyed by frantic attempts to elicit more responses.”[2]

In 2019 artist James Wright made a digital recreation of GlowFlow based on limited documentation of the original.


[2] Krueger, Myron W. 1977. “Responsive environments” in: Proceedings of the June 13-16, 1977, national computer conference. AFIPS ’77. Dallas, Texas:ACM

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