1991 ILDA Awards

Presented at the November 1991 ILDA Conference in Los Angeles. Hosted by Laser Images, Inc.

From The Laserist magazine, Summer 1992 issue

From a theatre stage in Warsaw, Poland, to the rooftop of the World Trade Center in New York City, laser displays from around the globe were honored in ILDA's largest creative competition to date.

The 1991 competition for outstanding laser displays saw the highest number of entries submitted in the program's four-year history, evidence of the growing popularity of the medium. The broad scope of winning entries was also proof that laser displays are reaching out to new markets and new applications.

Award-winning displays, for example, included special laser effects for a Japanese amusement park, an educational exhibit at the Mexico City Archeological Museum, a live laser/music performance in Warsaw, Poland and an outdoor beam display that spanned the New York City skyline. Subject matter for the displays included advertising for such corporate giants as Coca-Cola and Marlboro, educational programming on topics ranging from DNA to natural history, and entertainment programs that encompassed everything from rock 'n' roll to an homage to abstract artist Vassily Kandinsky.

The 132 entries submitted by 14 firms were evaluated by a three-person panel who judged entries on professionalism, creativity and uniqueness. The judges represented a spectrum of laser applications from technical, artistic, and scientific fields:

Michael Ceden's film animation credits included "The Little Mermaid," "Rescuers Down Under," and "American Tail." He also is a creator and animator of laser works for Walt Disney World.

Dr. J. William McGowan, as director of the National Museum of Science and Technology in Ottawa, Canada, curated one of the world's largest holography exhibits. He also was a professor of physics at the University of Western Ontario.

Craig Newswanger, the third member of the panel, developed special laser effects for Walt Disney Imagineering and designed the laser-illuminated fiber-optic sphere at Walt Disney's Epcot Center.

The 28 artistic awards were divided into nine categories, with awards going to ten companies. In the New Technology category, first place was awarded to Aura Technologies, Inc. of Chicago. Aura's new technology allows artists to use musical instruments to produce visual laser displays through the popular MIDI interface. Three honorable mentions also were awarded in this category to recognize new computer software techniques for creating laser displays.

Video on YouTube

The videotape compilation of 1991 winners is available on YouTube.

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