Lillian Schwartz


Lillian F. Schwartz (born 1927) is a 20th-century American artist considered a pioneer of computer-mediated art and one of the first artists notable for basing almost her entire oeuvre on computational media. Many of her ground-breaking projects were done in the 1960s and 1970s, well before the desktop computer revolution made computer hardware and software widely available to artists.

A Glitch in the System: Lillian Schwartz | Topical Cream LILLIAN SCHWARTZ on Twitter: "My film "Pixillation" will be shown ...

INCITE » Lillian Schwartz Sees in Four-Dimensions, by Walter Forsberg




©1970, Lillian F. Schwartz and Kenneth C. Knowlton

Cinema Project - The Artist and the Computer: Lillian F. Schwartz

Chromadepth Glasses

2D Work

Can be viewed with Chromadepth glasses

“Head” Copyright © 1968 Lillian F. Schwartz. All rights reserved.

Abstract #8, 1969 Marker and crayon on graph paper 51 3/8 × 41 5/8 in    130.5 × 105.7 cm

Schwartz’s editing techniques may seem old hat to some 21st-century viewers, but her videos still consistently compel; many of them get their charge from familiar, organic-looking material manipulated to form highly sensory experiences. What’s particularly remarkable, however, is that Schwartz arrived at some of her innovative techniques because of personal physical limitations. In 1955, she was diagnosed with chorioretinitis, which affects how she perceives color. It led her to devise methods of oversaturating her creations, ultimately enabling many of her films from the ’70s to be seen in both 2D and 3D; they predated the development of pixel-shifting technology, which is required for such conversion. And earlier, after the end of World War II, Schwartz contracted polio while living in Japan and practiced Japanese calligraphy to recover from muscle weakness. The painterly elements evident in many of her works produce an expressiveness so unexpected of computer imagery at the time.

Artist Writings and Interviews Oral History of Lillian F. Schwartz - Interviewed by Chris Garcia with Jon Plutte

Articles about her



Schwartz’s modus operandi seems to follow a standard where she is attracted to an artist, reads and studies the person and the work, files this information away until she has extended or invented a new way to work with a medium to express an interpretation of the creative energies bursting from the work of the artist in favor at the moment.

It’s a Lonely life — Lillian Schwartz