RADIANT ATMOSPHERES is a look at the rogue artist collective, Radiant Atmospheres, founded c. 1996 under the umbrella of the underground rave scene in the SF Bay Area. Pulling inspiration from the psychedelic light shows of the 1960s and 70s, Radiant Atmospheres builds large-scale installations using analog lighting effects like the liquid light show, custom written software, vintage disco lights, and modern automated luminaires.
Radiant Atmospheres has held onto its DIY origins by declining profit-motivated concerts and commercial entertainment live events. As a result, the group provides its members a chance to collaborate and utilize their rare collection of vintage lighting. Through participation and hands-on learning, members make discoveries that lead to a "full crayon box" of personal expression.
At the heart of the collective is the wizard of lighting, Mr. Dave Abel. Committed to his original vision of providing lightshows for self produced parties, Abel grew Radiant Atmospheres from the ground up, with the support of several generations of collaborators along the way. There is a particular brilliance in this goat figurine-collecting madman, whose sputtering charisma is unmistakable.
The audience is invited backstage to see the business of making magic on a shoestring budget fueled by limited resources, on-the-fly design, and sleep deprived humor at their all night workathons. Every Radiant Atmospheres lightshow is notorious for coming together at the last minute due to lack of full time employees which would afford the group structure and organization. This rag-tag style of production is what makes the shows so magical in its design, execution, and ephemeral experience. The more permanent impact is how Dave Abel continues to inspire and enrich the lives of the people around him. Brimming with intelligence, warmth, and sarcasm, RADIANT ATMOSPHERES provides an authentic portrayal of the working creatives whose happiness, passion, and livelihoods are intrinsically tied to the underground rave scene.