Kaelin, Barney James, age 54, passed away on Tuesday, October 18, 2005 in Playa del Rey. Barney Kaelin was born in Los Angeles and lived here his entire life. His early interest in radio and audio led to his work as a radio producer, working at KLOS and KABC radio for 18 years. While at Loyola Marymount University, he was also introduced to video visual effects and to lasers and began his fascination with visual music, the tight integration of visual effects or images with music, which he called viewsic. During his career in radio, Barney also started his own businesses to perform laser light shows, built and sold custom laser projectors, created innovative visual effects using lasers, and directed the development of an early computerized laser effects creation and playback control system. He received a patent for The Lasercube, which allows laser abstract images to be viewed in 3D without smoke or fog. Barney and his father, Al Kaelin, created the Lumisphere, a complex shape expressed in glittering holograph diffraction material. He was continually intrigued by visual illusions and effects, creating the AntiGravity Waterfall, Volcano Columns, holograms, plasma globes, crackle neon signs, and countless effects for photography, video, television and films, including work on the short-lived television series Century City and on the movie Minority Report. His most recent achievement was the development of TransFilm, a transparent projection screen which allows artists, producers, and others to create characters, people, and objects which satisfy the viewer’s wish to see moving, talking holographic images. He is survived by Wife, Phyllis Kaelin of Playa del Rey, CA, Father, Albert Kaelin, Brother, Dan Kaelin of La Jolla, CA, Brother, John (Rosy) Kaelin of Van Nuys, CA, Sister, Julie Kaelin of Glendora, CA. Visitation will be Monday, October 24, 2005, 4 until 8PM with vigil service at 7PM both at Rice Chapel. Funeral Mass, Tuesday, October 25, 2005 at 10:30AM at St. Anastasia Church, Los Angeles with committal in Holy Cross Cemetery, Culver City, CA.

View current weather.

Memories Timeline

View the Timeline


  1. I fell out of touch with Barney in the 70’s but I remember his early work with the lasers. I recently reconnected with mutual friends and was saddened to hear of his passing. Barney was a good man.

  2. The same curiosity that led Barney to create so many advances in laser technology flowed over into his curiosity and interest in others. He was a treasure to know, and from the time he started at LMU became one of my “adopted brothers” with Paul and Rick and Lenny, such loyal friends to my beloved brother Bill and to myself. His joy in learning and sharing others’lives led him to his love, Phyllis, herself a woman of many facets and gifts. Barney will be so greatly missed. He will definitely be one who’s stars will make the face of heaven so fine, we will all love the night, and pay no worship to the garish son. Condolences to all Barney’s family and loved ones. Marilyn

  3. Phyllis, I am so sorry to read of Barney’s passing. It must be very difficult for you. If there is anything that I can do, please phone me. michele nies, formerly w marina travel…310 545-5189

Sign the Guestbook, Light a Candle

Sign the Guestbook