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Class 03 - Video Art: Performance, Politics, and Aesthetics
Transcript of Class 03 - Video Art: Performance, Politics, and Aesthetics
Hans Namuth, Portfolio, 1950, documentary about J. Pollok
Ugo Mulas, Lucio Fontana, 1968.
The Portapak would seem to have been invented specifically for use by artists. Just when pure
formalism had run its course
; just when it became
politically embarrassing to make objects
, but ludicrous to make nothing; just when
many artists were doing performance
had nowhere to perform
, or felt the
need to keep a record of their performances
; just when it began to seem silly to ask the same old Berkleean question, ‘If you build a sculpture in the desert where no one can see it, does it exist?’; just when it
became clear that TV communicates more information to more people than large walls
do; just when we understood that in order to define space it is necessary to encompass
; just when many established
ideas in other disciplines were being questioned
and new models were proposed — just then the Portapak became available.
Hermine Freed, from "Video Art: An Anthology", (1976).
Participate in the media culture and create an alternative to television.
Document political and social change
Create documentation of immaterial/ephemeral art works (documentation becomes the artwork)
Experiment with a new artistic medium
Have access to a larger public
Performance, Politics, and Aesthetics
Eva & Franco Mattes
Bruce Nauman, Walking in an Exaggerated Manner around the Perimeter of a Square (1967-68, 10’).
Video Art emerges in a complex international cultural environment characterized by:
Anti-war protest, civil rights movements, sexual liberation, feminism, black power, students and workers protests.
The exhaustion of Abstract Expressionism (USA), and in general the dematerialization of the art object, in favor of the use of the everyday object.
A general lure for art social responsibility.
The exploration of new art forms/media influenced by dance, theater, performance, and film.
Hennessy Youngman, Art Thoughtz: Bruce Nauman
Martha Rosler, Semiotics of the Kitchen, 1975.
Vito Acconci, Centers, (1971, 22:43).
Joan Jonas, Vertical Roll (1972, 19’38’’)
"TV as a Creative Medium," at the Howard Wise gallery, New York, 1969
Videofreex, Pirate TV Show, 1972
Marina Abramović and Ulay”, Imponderabilia" 
Eva & Franco Mattes, Reenactment of Marina Abramovic and Ulay's Imponderabilia, 2007-2010.
Joan Jonas, Vertical Roll, 1972.
Richard Serra and Nancy Holt, Boomerang, 1974.
John Baldessari Sings LeWitt, 1972
William Wegman, Dog Duet (1972)
People’s Video Theater
Telestreet, Italian pirate TV stations, micro-TVs that broadcast for a few hours a day within a range of 200 meters, June 2002.
- Video Tape were reusable
- No Editing (at the beginning)
Nam June Paik and Charlotte Moorman, TV Bra for Living Sculpture, 1969.
Bruce Nauman, Wall/Floor Positions (1968).
Robert Smithson, Spiral Jetty, 1970.
II. Video Art / Video Activism
Lucio Fontana, Concetto Spaziale, Attese, 1964.
Hans Namuth, Jackson Pollock, 1951.
TV Brassiere for Living Sculpture (Charlotte Moorman) is one sharp example to humanize electronics … and technology. By using TV as bra … the most intimate belonging of human being, we will demonstrate the human use of technology, and also stimulate viewers, NOT for something mean, by stimulate their phantasy [sic] to look for the new, imaginative, and humanistic ways of using our technology.
Nam June Paik, 1969
"The most important function of Wipe Cycle was to integrate the audience into the information.
It was a live feedback system which enabled the viewer standing within its environment to see himself not only now in time and space, but also eight seconds ago and sixteen seconds ago. In addition he saw standard broadcast images alternating with his own delayed/live image. And also two collage-type programmed tapes, ranging from a shot of the earth, to outer space, to cows grazing, and a 'skin flick' bathtub scene.”.
Ira Schneider, 1969.
Wipe Cycle, Ira Schneider and Frank Gillette, 1969
Valie Export, Tapp- und Tastkino (“Tap and Touch Cinema”), 1968.
Sony Portapak, 1967.
Battery powered, self-contained video tape analog recording system that can be carried by one person. The Portapak made it possible to record video easily outside of the studio for the first time.
Four More Years, TVTV, 1972.
Videofreex, Lanesville TV, 1971-1977.
First USA pirate TV station, based in Lanesville, New York.
Relation in Time. Marina Abramović and Ulay, 1977.
Chris Burden, Shoot, 1971