Ken Kobland has been working in various aspects of film and video since 1971, creating productions in collaboration with performing artists such as Philip Glass, the Wooster Group, Elizabeth LeCompte, and Spalding Gray. His work explores a variety of themes and issues, often embracing a photographic aesthetic within the context of video. Beautifully edited, his work merges diaristic and documentary categories, presenting an art of video that approximates photo-journalism.
This 7-DVD box set contains the following titles from the artist:
Une Ville de l'Avenir uses the lens of Alphaville to look at the City of the Future that we live in today. The modernism of La Defense in Paris is the setting for this chilling revisiting. Alphaville appears as a condensed airplane movie in this experimental short by a video art pioneer.
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. She shows them around, pointing out monitors and lighting set ups.
Parry shows her an arm-mounted video camera he has made and bought along for her to try out -- the first time she has seen one. Amid lively banter, Shirley jokes about how one day cameras will be small enough to store on a wristwatch.
This video is a 7-minute single channel piece consisting of two monologues: the first is a speech prepared for Richard Nixon in the event of a moon landing disaster in 1969, the second is the final words of the computer HAL from the film 2001.
Rosa Barba produced a science fiction film based on interviews with local residents and individuals involved in the land suppletion project for Maasvlakte 2. Barba asked the interviewees to imagine what this new land could look like in the future. While we see images of the new land, the slufter: a storage reservoir for heavily contaminated sludge from the new Meuse river, the construction of the huge docksides, basalt blocks, empty containers and the mechanical movements of the transhipment process, we listen to a story apparently taking place in the future.
A short Flicker Film adulterated by some extra images shot in Malawi, Africa. FF was in answer to an assignment given by artists Melissa Dubbin and Aaron Davidson who created the soundtrack to which I was asked to make a “Future Film”.
This program presents different approaches to looking at war, and to using images of war. My Friend Imad and the Taxi is an unfinished work from two amateur filmmakers, both passionate about film, who lived in Beirut in the eighties when the city looked like the set from a war film. Samir’s work looks at the intersection between (H)istory and (h)is story as lived at home.
HalfLifers is an ongoing collaborative project created by longtime friends and fellow media artists Torsten Zenas Burns and Anthony M. Discenza. Embracing a gestural improvisation-based performance style and championing a rigorously low-fi aesthetic, HalfLifers engages a shifting region of speculative fictions, from play therapy and improvised crisis re-stagings to zombie architectural systems and psychic sandwich surgery.
This 3-disc DVD collection features nine works by maverick film and video maker Peggy Ahwesh. The set also includes title descriptions, a biography, film/videography, a selected bibliography, and the following texts:
Pistolary! Films and Videos by Peggy Ahwesh -- Eileen Myles
A distinguished looking man (performance artist Richard Layzell) is apparently trapped in an ever changing void of colour, locked in a power play with a perversely operated camera. A mute, caged, charismatic TV presenter he is by turns charming, menacing, educational, confused. At times he appears to have great powers. A voice over tells us extraordinary things - how this man is special - the first man to 'have a baby'. Hallucinogenic flash-frames punctuate the colour field to give us a view of his world's disturbing and alien futuristic logic.
Harun Farocki utilizes a vast collection of image sequences from laboratories, archives and production facilities to explore modern weapons technology. This trilogy examines "intelligent" image processing techniques such as electronic surveillance, mapping and object recognition, in order to take a closer look at the relationship between man, machine, and modern warfare.
The first work in the Action series plunges into a world of frantic heroes trapped in a continual crisis of dissolution and reification. An ordinary domestic setting is recast as a psychoactive landscape in which the concept of function becomes situational and fluid. Only through the strategic application of organic and inorganic “devices” can this zone be successfully navigated and the mission be saved.