Media Analysis

2001
Bringing It All To You!

®™ark is an organization dedicated to bringing anti-corporate subversion and sabotage into the public marketplace. This updated video compilation includes a glitzy promotion for the ®™ark system (Bringing It All to You!); a behind-the-scenes look at some ®™ark propaganda efforts; an ®™ark PowerPoint presentation concerning "the Y2K bug”; a Danish television report about ®™ark and Hitler; a Boston news report about ®™ark; and, finally, the grand prize winner of ®™ark 1998 Corporate Poetry Contest, reading his winning entry.

2009
Burning Blue, The

A video that observes the thrill, terror, and boredom found in watching mass spectacles, and the unexpected loneliness when you miss them. This video speaks of both the power and the failure of the televised experience to bind us to one another.

1975
Cadillac Ranch/Media Burn

"We buried ten Cadillacs in a row alongside Interstate 40 (the old Route 66), just west of Amarillo, Texas; each car represented a model change in the evolution of the tail fin. This was clearly a sculptural act, but with a minimal amount of formal manipulation. Media Burn, created a year later in San Francisco, was a live performance. It was a spectacle staged for the camera culminating in the 4,000 pound Phantom Dream Car crashing through a pyramid of TV sets to the cheers of the audience of 400.

2011
Ceibas: Epilogue - The Well of Representation

In part a remake of Hollis Frampton’s Gloria! (1979), in part a repurposing of hacked, 16-bit video game technology, The Well of Representation asks us to reconsider our fear of the liminal. Following the convergent narratives of several voices, ranging from the linearly historical to the cybernetically personal, we come to understand the journey ahead: searching from interface to interface, knowing that whatever home we find will be a collaborative compromise. One where we might live beyond our representations and finally come to say what we mean.

2010
Ceibas: We Things at Play

We have come to this place of meaning together, celebrating our un-remaindered completeness. Yet, in our wake endures a long procession of stowaways: misspoken sounds we unconsciously omit, the limitations of our alphabet, the ignored gaps of an imperfect analog, and most recently, these forgetful bits of the virtual. We celebrate the lineage of our information as we celebrate one another, not realizing that the loudest affirmations might come from these unacknowledged, unavoidable participants. With each generation, they say a little bit more, speaking a little bit louder.

2003
Cinepolis, La Capital Del Cine (Cinepolis, the Film Capital)

"Perhaps Cuevas' most chilling work, Cinepolis forecasts an image-driven invasion of everyday life, picture-perfect and unnoticed. This alien intrusion comes in the form of a fully branded consumerscape that cheerily foists fast food along with the fantasy. Irreverent and biting, Cuevas fights back with the only weapon available--images of the enemy, and the enemy’s images."

--Steve Seid, Pacific Film Archive, 2004

This title is also available on Half-Lies: The Videoworks of Ximena Cuevas.

1999
code switching

"code switching began as a contemporary reaction to Adrian Piper's Cornered (1988). It goes on to explore the fracturing of contemporary identity within modern culture, and the mechanisms by which individuals assign and create the cultural, racial, personal, and social identities around us. We all have codes by which we interact with and interpret others. Depending on what situation we are in, we adopt the appropriate persona to fit the occasion, constantly creating representations for others to read appropriately.

1990
Annie Goldson & Chris Bratton, Counter Terror: North of Ireland

This video takes its departure from the BBC's coverage of the killing of three IRA volunteers by British Security Forces in Strabane, a small town on the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic. Interrogating television discourse, the video examines what is referred to as the British “shoot to kill” policy of planned assassination in the North.

1984
Credits

Credits is about re-reading information. Recycling. Image-making. Wallpaper TV. Zen. Money. Labor. And of course, credits. Through all their aspects and characteristics, credits reflect the way that programs, productions and institutions select to present themselves.… Muntadas is again dealing with the 'invisible' information that lies behind mass media production and transmission.”

--Kathy Rae Huffman, Video: A Retrospective (Los Angeles: Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Arts, 1984)

1999
Ximena Cuevas: Dormimundo Vol. 1

"If there's something big, big that you want to reach for, you begin by dreaming." —Ivonne and Ivette

"The discomfort in Sleepworld Volume 1 is that of being oneself. The videos included here look at who we are and what we imagine we are. They are experiments in appearances, about the use of artifice to improve life or hide it. It is a reflection on moral displacement, hypocrisy, self-contained dreams, self-loathing, self-destruction in order to repeatedly kill our dreams.

2002
Ximena Cuevas: El Mundo del Silencio (The Silent World)

Cuevas is obsessed with the micro movements of daily life, with the border between truth and fiction, with the "impossibility" of reality. Her work relentlessly seeks out the layers of lies covering the everyday representations of reality and systematically explores the fictions of national identity and gender.

1988
Dear Dennis

Susan Mogul's fantasies of success have always a comic, congenial twist, as in Dear Dennis, a video letter to Dennis Hopper inspired by her discovery that they share the same dentist. The central irony of this witty piece is that, despite Hopper's popular persona as an innovative, sub-cultural filmmaker and performer, the actual distance between his so-called independent" films and Mogul's experimental, non-commercial videos prevents Susan from finding any common ground from which to address Hopper other than the subject of dental work.

2008
Deliver

Like a generation of viewers, I was profoundly affected by Deliverance.  But I have always been troubled by the hegemonic structures of gender proposed by Boorman and Dickey. Hence, my version is played by women: myself, Peggy Ahwesh, Jackie Goss, Su Friedrich, and Meredith Root, all experimental filmmakers who work as academics. While faithful to our respective male characters, we also play ourselves.

2009
Disambiguation

Starting out as equal parts authors, editors and thieves, the Disambiguation project began when two artists were invited to curate a screening together.  Since they live in separate cities, Chicago and London respectively, they decided to swap and re-edit files of video and audio material from their own archives by post.  Animations, pornography, songs, downloads and fragments from their own back catalogue were passed back and forth across the Atlantic to be chopped and sequenced into an exquisite corpse of swapped signals.

2007
The Disappointment: Or, The Force of Credulity

The Disappointment: Or, The Force of Credulity is a documentary about the search for four lost treasures buried on a single farm in Missouri. These treasures include a Spanish explorer's gold, silver from the Civil War, mysterious stone carvings, lost texts, and a wife's attempt to heal her husband and protect herself and her children. Part personal documentary and part historical essay, The Disappointment traces the patterns of cultural forgetting etched in the landscape of the Austin Farm.