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.
William Wegman
1976 | 05:05
Gray Hairs

Gray Hairs is a visual and aural poem to Man Ray, featuring close-up shots of the dog’s body and a soundtrack of panting, sniffing and licking.

 

Green As Well As Blue As Well As Red

A table is set with two red books placed at diagonal corners and a stack of three poker chips placed in the center. Two women enter, sit, and begin to play with the books and poker chips. Different soundtracks converge; the dialogue begins to...

 

The Grunions are Running

Using imagery from a Japanese "creature feature" and a chewing gum commercial, Benglis's camera focuses on different parts of the screen to emphasize different messages. With dialogue and sound replaced by the sound of frogs croaking outside...

 

Hey, Chicky!!!

In this cooking demonstration/performance, Sobell wears a chicken carcass over her face while dressing (literally, in baby clothes) a chicken to be cooked for dinner. Cooing and breast feeding the chicken as she would an infant, Sobell brings two...

 

Home Tape Revised

In Home Tape Revised, Benglis took a portable tape recorder with her when she visited her family in Louisiana. She saw most of the experience through the video camera, thus giving her a distance from an emotionally involving...

 

How's Tricks

There is a crudeness to How's Tricks, Benglis's first venture into narrative fiction. No attempt is made to hide the mechanics of making the tape. At one point, while Benglis and [Stanton] Kaye argue about the tape they are making of [...

 

I Am Making Art

“A good example of Baldessari’s deadpan irreverence is the 1971 black-and-white video entitled I Am Making Art, in which he moves different parts of his body slightly while saying, after each move, ‘I am making art.’ The statement, he...

 

I Remember Beverly Hills

Segalove comes out as the child of a movie star haven where messy lawns are reported to the police and designer labels are removed from hand-me-downs for the maids. She reveals some of the dirt among the manicured yards, including a local custom...

 

I Want to Live in the Country (And Other Romances)

Jonas intercuts scenes of the Nova Scotia countryside with images of a studio set-up reminiscent of a di Chirico painting. The soundtrack includes both music and spoken excerpts from a journal Jonas kept while travelling in Nova Scotia. I...