City

1997
Persistence

"Persistence was shot in 1991-92 in Berlin, and edited with films by U.S. Signal Corps cameramen in 1945-46, obtained from Department of Defense archives. Interspersed through these materials are filmic quotations from Rossellini's Germany Year Zero (1946). A meditation on the time just after a great historical event, about what is common to moments such as these—the continuous and discontinuous threads of history—and our attachment to cinematic modes of observation that, by necessity, shape our view of events.

1983
Plastic Rap with Frieda

In this early Tom Rubnitz, Barbara Lipp and Tom Koken collaboration, "Frieda" performs her rap song with a bevy of dolls as back-up singers and dancers. Features rock-bottom production values and song lyrics by Barbara Lipp and Tom Koken.

2007
Plot Point

The crowded streets of New York City turn into fictive, cinematographic scenery. Provost is playing with our collective memory, its cinematic codes and narrative languages - questioning the boundaries between a staged, suggested reality and authentic fiction. Although filmed with a hidden camera, Plot Point presents a highly dramatic construction with overly sophisticated images and a subtle but tangible urge in the soundtrack.

1974
Points of View: Clocktower

A circular image moves across a black background while two people attempt to describe what they are seeing. A prime example of Nancy Holt’s examination into the way we interpret what we see, Points of View features four couples (Lucy Lippard and Richard Serra, Liza Bear and Klaus Kertess, Carl Andre and Ruth Kligman and Bruce Brice and Tina Girouard) talking to each other while watching the moving ellipse. Each of the four sections takes in the “view” from a different direction, north, south, east and west.

2011
Daniel Eisenberg, POSTWAR: The Films of Daniel Eisenberg

This three-disc DVD box set contains Eisenberg's four thematically connected films - Displaced Person, Cooperation of Parts, Persistence, and Something More Than Night - made between 1981 and 2003, exploring the ongoing implications of the Second World War and the fall of the Berlin Wall, as well as the relationships between the past, present and future, and how the meanings of events transform over time.  The disks are accompanied by a booklet with a contextualizing essay by Scott Durham and an artist interview with Domieta Torlasco, along with titl

2011
Jem Cohen, Real Birds

The scene: the industrial neighborhood of Gowanus, Brooklyn.

The players: wind, a flooded road, passersby, and birds...

The time: shortly before the 10th anniversary of 9/11.

Note: This title is intended by the artist to be viewed in High Definition. While DVD format is available to enable accessibility, VDB recommends presentation on Blu-ray or HD digital file.

 

2003
Sample City

With sampled image and sound sequences referring to one another in a precisely calculated rhythmic alternation on four projection surfaces, Călin Dan draws a portrait of the city of Bucharest. Dilapidated tower blocks next to estates of terraced houses, Roma families camping with their horses and carts in the wastelands in the midst of the city, broken streets and new shopping paradises--today the formerly communist Bucharest is a city in upheaval, full of social contradictions and oppositions.

1971
Videofreex, Shirley Clarke and the Camera

Parry Teasdale, David Cort and Chuck Kennedy visit The Kitchen in New York looking for Shirley Clarke, and bump into Steina and Woody Vasulka who are overseeing a show in progress.  A few doors down they find Shirley in her studio, dressed in white and full of energy. 

1974
Show and Tell

"There are three scenes in this work, all reflecting a changing sense of time. Each has a voiceover soundtrack with a similar structure, but with different information. Some of the comments presume that the viewer is privy to information which is never given..."

2010
Shrimp Chicken Fish

An homage to Chicago's East 95th Street Bridge, Calumet Fisheries and to a couple of the city's infamous brothers.  The take-out shack, originally glimpsed in the background of a scene from The Blues Brothers, still operates.  It has become a real-world portal to a cinematic past.  Propped along the edge of the 95th street drawbridge, the building is framed by the towering infrastructures of the Chicago Skyway and Calumet Harbor.

2004
So Much

During my residency in New York I was designing a computer virus, which would contaminate computers through a screensaver that read “there is so much love in this world”. In the meanwhile, inspired by the illusionary democratic representation system in the United States and triggered by the indifference of the New York public to the presidential campaign, I went out to the streets to distribute fliers that carried this virus sentence. People of New York reacted in different ways to this action, which had similarities with many other hand-out actions common in big cities.

1999
Some Chance Operations

Shot in Naples, Vienna, and New York, Some Chance Operations explores the notion of an archival form, in this instance film, as an unstable memory receptacle that can vanish. History and how it is made is meditated upon as one of many chance operations. The filmmaker Elvira Notari, who had a film production company in Naples from 1906 to 1930, plays a significant role as an impetus for Some Chance Operations. Despite the fact that she was a prolific filmmaker, producing over sixty feature films, only three remain intact.

2003
Something More Than Night

1. The idea that a film about a city, a quiet, architectural film no less, can tell us anything that we don’t already know about urban life at this point in our new century is perhaps a bit arrogant. But the city is an organism that changes constantly; our knowledge of it is provisional at best. So a film that examines the urban environment under the cloak of darkness must presume to reveal a reality that we don’t know, and tries to dispel projections and fears that are for the most part located in the imagination... in a memory of film, television, or the novel.

2010
Stardust

Stardust is the second part of the trilogy where Nicolas Provost investigates the boundaries of fiction and reality by filming everyday life with a hidden high resolution camera and turning the cinematic images into a fiction film by using cinematographic and narrative codes from the Hollywood film language. The first part of the trilogy was the award winning Plot Point (2007) that was shot entirely with a hidden camera and turned everyday life around Times Square, New York into a thriller film.

2015
Steve Hates Fish

Filmed directly from the screen of a smartphone using a language translator app that has been told to translate from French into English, Steve Hates Fish interprets the signage and architecture in a busy London shopping street. In an environment overloaded with information, the signs run riot as the confused and restless software does its best to fulfill its task.