Chicago Art

2007
Space Ghost

Space Ghost compares the experiences of astronauts and prisoners, using popular depictions of space travel to illustrate the physical and existential aspects of incarceration: sensory deprivation, the perception of time as chaotic and indistinguishable, the displacement of losing face-to-face contact, and the sense of existing in a different but parallel universe with family and loved-ones.

1984
Spectral Brands

[This] is my first attempt to construct a video piece using one set of generative intervals for both sound and color. All of the color in the piece is orchestrated in brightness ‘octaves’ corresponding to the registration of the pitches in the soundtrack. Each hue from a circle of twelve corresponds to one of the pitches of a tempered scale. The articulation of the piece consists of a series of loudness and brightness ripples which move across the piece in speed relationships derived from the hue and pitch proportions.

1998
Stuffing

In Animal Charm's masterful example of video montage, a monkey is mesmerized as he watches two dolphins toss a woman from snout to snout. Go cross-eyed with cross-cutting. Sometimes, in order to prevent the insidious absorption of mass media, it is necessary to apply Vaseline to your eyes and ears. Other times, you only need to watch Stuffing — it’s inside of everything.

2010
Suitable Video, Volume 1

This program loosely organizes work by a number of artists who showed at Suitable Gallery a DIY exhibition space located in Chicago’s Humboldt Park neighborhood, during its 5 year run between 1999 and 2004. It speaks more of a community of artists than of a curatorial agenda. The process of selection and compilation began as a straightforward effort to survey all the video work shown at Suitable. Substitutions and omissions occurred in response to logistic and aesthetic concerns. The resulting program ultimately sought balance and watchability over purity or completeness.

2003
super-max

I drove around the U.S. filming these super maximum-security prison buildings the spring and summer after the World Trade Center bombing. I knew that counties within various states had been frantically outbidding each other to get these high-tech gulags to replace the farming and manufacturing jobs that have been lost over the last 25 years. The timing seemed right to remind everyone what we have been doing with our public funding and to draw parallels with the neo-liberal economic policies espoused with variations by the Reagan, Clinton and both Bush administrations.

1999
Swamp Swamp

Swamp Swamp and Wurmburth are each comprised of a series of tightly cropped shots of small, hand-made table-top sculptures or "sets".  Paint and many other materials that behave like paint (i.e. lotion, shampoo, foodstuffs) are blown through these environments with plastic tubing and forced air.  Each edited collection of shots makes an endless cycle of primal sludge and rupturing goo.

1999
Target

Why is this injured man driving around and around a shopping center parking lot? Just what is his Target? An atmospheric mystery tale that hints at a sad story.

2016
MAGIC HEDGE

The Magic Hedge explores a bird sanctuary located on a former Cold War Nike missile site on the Northside of Chicago. Left to wander and observe, the viewer becomes aware of the park's open secret: men looking for fleeting sexual contacts within the trees and shrubberies. The video highlights the many contradictions of a site historically devoted to military surveillance and now designed to preserve and control the "wildlife".

2000
Transitional Objects

Begun as a consideration of the upgrading from manual to digital film editing techniques, Transitional Objects explores the anxiety and loss inevitable in such a transition while also suggesting the consequences of other life transitions. The video takes its title from D.W. Winnicott's theory of children's use of transitional objects to negotiate the gaps between internal reality and the shared reality of people and things.

1981
Trim Subdivisions

This tape deviates from the more purely formal investigations of Snyder’s earlier work; it has no soundtrack and uses camera images exclusively. Employing Quantel digital effects and editing procedures, a novelty in video post-production at the time, Snyder manipulates images of tract houses shot in a small Indiana town. Cubist re-constructions of the monotonous facades fracture spatial planes into intricate geometric arrangements, with frames enclosing frames, spiralling like Chinese boxes.

2009
tryphon: three sounds, the art of thomas h. kapsalis

tryphon: three sounds is a candid portrait of the artist Thomas H. Kapsalis (b.

2011
Videofreex, Tuned In, Turned On! Videofreex Tape the World

Formed in 1969 at the legendary Woodstock Music Festival by David Cort and Parry Teasdale, who met while taping the events with the newly available Portapak video equipment, the Videofreex (also known as "the Freex") were one of the very first video collectives. After working together to pitch a program to the major broadcasting station CBS, they toured the country interviewing counter-cultural figures of the day, including Fred Hampton, a leader of the Black Panther party, and Abbie Hoffman, so called leader of the Yippies.

1980
Wanda Wega Waters

A rural sunset at the edge of the water in Wanda Wega Waters. The natural rhythmic movement of the water’s surface becomes a highly colored abstraction in motion, a meditation on the intersection of nature and technology.

1975
Bob Snyder, Winter Notebook

This tape exemplifies Snyder’s early experiments with the image processor. Articulated patterns of alternating wavelength and amplitude of both sound and light are arranged to produce abstract compositions. Voltages processed by an Emu sound synthesizer are systematized through characteristic interval structures that affect the image processor’s functions.

This title is only available on Bob Snyder: Sound and Video 1975-1990.

1996
Working Together

What are all of these photographers trying to capture, and just who is collaborating with whom? This short piece could be a take on fame and the cult of the personality—or a tourist portrait with the audience as subject.

This title is also available on Animal Charm Videoworks: Volume 1.