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Alvy Ray Smith visits CAVI

The computer graphics legend visited CAVI today

Today, we had the honor of meeting and showing around a living legend and a pioneer in computer graphics and animation. Alvy Ray Smith was the co-founder of Lucasfilm’s Computer Division, and was responsible for convincing George Lucas that computer generated graphics could be used for story telling in motion pictures. He created and directed the famous sequence entitled the “Genesis Demo” in Star Trek II which in many ways paved the way for the use of animated computer graphics in movies. A few years later he co-founded Pixar with funding from Steve Jobs, where he directed the very first Pixar Short ‘The Adventures of André & Wally B.’ which was followed by several other short movies and eventually the first feature-length animated movie Toy Story in 1995.

Alvy was shown a variety of CAVI’s interactive installations and got hands-on experiences with the Interactive Terracotta Warrior and RadarTable, among other things. CAVI’s use of graphics and animation is somewhat different from Alvy’s work as he has almost exclusively been dealing with pre-rendered graphics but his fascination with the story telling aspect of computer animation fits perfectly with CAVI’s approach to interactive installations.