Early Video Art

Early Video Art is a collection of titles that are central to an understanding of the historical development of video art. This collection includes, but is not limited to, many titles from the original Castelli-Sonnabend collection, the first and most prominent collection of video art assembled in the United States. All of the work in this collection was produced between 1968 and 1980. These works represent important examples of the first experiments in video art, and include conceptual and feminist performances recorded on video, experiments with the video signal, and "guerilla" documentaries representing a counter-cultural view of the historical events of the 1960s and 70s. Many of these tapes represent a desire for a radically redefined television experience that is centered on the innovative, the personal, the political and the non-commercial.
Urban Episodes

 

 

Joan Jonas
1972 | 19:37
Vertical Roll

In this well-known early tape, Jonas manipulates the grammar of the camera to create the sense of a grossly disturbed physical space. The space functions as a metaphor for the unstable identity of the costumed and masked female figure roaming the...

 

Video Locomotion (man performing forward hand leap)

"Homage to Eadweard Muybridge. A historical Muybridge photo grid is put into an electronic video signal space. Working with collected postcards, in this case, the durational photo series by the 19th century photographer Eadweard Muybridge, this...

 

Video-Taping

Gusella's title creates a pun on the term video "tape" by using a split screen in which one half is the electronic negative of the other. Gusella set up a glass sheet and suspended it from light poles. The glass was covered with black or white...

 

Violin Tuned D.E.A.D.

Nauman stands with his back to the camera, repeatetedly drawing the bow across the strings of a violin tuned D, E, A, D. Perhaps more than any other exercise, this tape demonstrates the sense of anticipation built up in the viewer, as we wait for...

 

Vital Statistics of a Citizen, Simply Obtained

Taking aim at the social standardization enforced particularly on women's bodies, Rosler critiques the politics of "objective" or scientific evaluation that result in the depersonalization, objectification, and colonization of women and Others....

 

Wall/Floor Positions

Making himself into a “minimalist” prop sculpture in the manner of Richard Serra, Nauman moves through various poses in realtion to the floor and wall. While other sculptors were using wood planks, pieces of lead, or sheets of steel, Nauman uses...

 

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.

 

Paul Kos
1971 | 07:30
Warlock(ing)

In this early black and white, reel-to-reel video, small game traps are set to catch the rain.

This title is also available on Sympathetic ...