Performance

2016
FEELINGS

An original program for VDB TV curated by Rachael Rakes and Leo Goldsmith. These striking videos each examine a force of feeling which is beyond emotion or affect, and which often elicit physical sensation.

1973
Female Sensibility

As two heavily made-up women take turns directing each other and submitting to each other's kisses and caresses, it becomes increasingly obvious that the camera is their main point of focus. Read against feminist film theory of the "male gaze", the action becomes a highly charged statement of the sexual politics of viewing and role-playing; and, as such, is a crucial text in the development of early feminist video.

2014
Fences Make Senses

Fences Make Senses re-stages and interrogates international barriers and borders using the bodies of non-refugees. Through a series of rehearsals, Barber aims to have privileged bodies experience the themes, situations, and ideas that refugees frequently face. This video was produced in response to the great number of documentaries the artist witnessed that interviewed the unfortunate in their impoverished conditions. Kept in limbo and squalor for years, these refugees are casually disliked by their "host" country.

2012
Ken Kobland, Film Work 1975-2011 Ken Kobland

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:

Disc 1

2007
Final Thoughts, Series One

I just got this tattoo — you can see it's still healing, the edges are raised like some sort of fancy business card — to mark the completion of this, Series One of my on-going project, Final Thoughts. So, on one wrist, facing fistward, a skull and, on the other, still tender and healing, a ghost. Let them be the mascots for the series, little cartoony avatars.

1990
Karen Finley: An Interview

Karen Finley is well known for her confrontational monologues, often performed in clubs and bars, which exploit the stereotype of the hysterical woman to address the sexual and political taboos associated with femininity. Using a variety of unusual props, such as Jello, chocolate syrup, stuffed animals, and glitter, Finley provokes her audience into thinking about a range of repressions and contradictions in contemporary society. She gained mainstream attention when Congress questioned her NEA funding in the early 1990s.

Interview by Tom Jaremba.

2010
The First Four Sorrows: Mike Kuchar

Performance artist and playwright Dan Carbone belts out four spooky songs in a room filled with mummy dusted lunacy.

1969
Five Easy Pieces

A compilation of five early short films made between 1966 to 1969.

Hand Movie 1966, 5:00, b&w, silent, 8mm

Close-up of a hand, the fingers of which enact a sensuous dance. Camerawork by William Davis.

Volleyball (Foot Film) 1967, 10:00 b&w, silent, 16mm

A volleyball is rolled into the frame and comes to rest. Two legs in sneakers, seen from the knees down, enter the frame and stand beside it. Cut to new angle, same characters and actions. Camerawork by Bud Wirtschafter.

2005
five more minutes

five more minutes is an exploration of grief. Two women spend an afternoon recreating lost time. What begins as play-acting breaks open into a world where the tenderness and sorrow of having to say goodbye exist untempered.

1977
Liza Bear, Five Video Pioneers

Featuring Vito Acconci, Richard Serra, Willoughby Sharp, Keith Sonnier, and William Wegman

2006
The Flag

"The Flag is the second part of a video series about the state-controlled national day ceremonies of the Turkish Republic. Shot during the April 23rd Children’s Day celebrations, which mark the establishment of the new Turkish Parliament, and hence the official demise of the Ottoman Empire back in 1920, this split screen film documents a pompous patriotic performance devised by elders to be performed by children.

1986
Ken Kobland, Flaubert Dreams of Travel But the Illness of His Mother...

Drawing from Flaubert's The Temptation of Saint Anthony, his letters, travel journals, and biography, this video layers fantasy, sexual obsession, morbidity, Romanticism, and boredom alongside the ghostliness of empty hotel rooms, aural atmosphere, and an homage to surrealist and horror films.

Co-produced by the Wooster Group, and featuring Ron Vawter.

2007
Flesh of Fury

This is a colorful fable of many foibles involving a man of the cloth who wishes to shed those accouterments for something of a more sinister fabric. The plot tumbles unrelentingly toward a sci-fi tone when a time machine is thrown into the vivid melange and our anti-hero gets caught up with an ancient soul who has the hots for less ancient hunks. There’s spectacle on a budget and young and old doing their best to put on a big show about the sacred, the profane and the goofy.

1968
Flesh to White to Black to Flesh

Presenting his bare torso to the camera, Nauman meticulously applies, and removes, layers of white and black pigment, to his face, arms, and chest. Beyond the link to body art, and the idea of treating the human body as artistic subject matter and material, Nauman enacts a process of self-transformation—a masque applied and removed—as the tape ends where it began.

This title was in the original Castelli-Sonnabend video art collection.

2007

Relying on the magic echo found in an old power Station in Norway, the artist whistles and marches to the Internationale, a May Day workers’ song.

This title is also available on Sympathetic Vibrations: The Videoworks of Paul Kos.