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.

Dan Sandin

Spiral PTL

1980 | 00:07:00

Short for "Probably The Last" (of the series), Spiral PTL uses the image processor like a musical instrument to create variations on a spiral, transforming its basic form into an ever-…

Dan Sandin

WandaWega Waters

1980 | 00:17:24

A rural sunset at the edge of the water in WandaWega Waters.

Segalove relates a tale from her childhood of a man's exposure with text (“the painter wagged it at me right here”), while an arrow blinks over a shot of the house where she grew up.

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.

Ilene Segalove

The Mom Tapes

1974 | 00:26:52

Segalove takes her mom as subject in these short pieces, recording her stories, her advice, and her daily routine.

Richard Serra


1974 | 00:10:27

This is a tape which analyzes its own discourse and processes as it is being formulated.

Television Delivers People is a seminal work in the now well-established critique of popular media as an instrument of social control that asserts itself subtly on the populace through “…

Michael Smith

Go For It, Mike

1984 | 00:05:00

Smith’s gentle, recusant comedy is a critique of masculine domination, focusing on the myth of manifest destiny.

Tapping into cable because of his lousy reception, Mike gets more than he bargained for as he unwittingly becomes trapped in the medium—the “star” of his own cable TV show.

Like all of Smith’s videotapes, Down in the Rec Room is based on a performance that finds Mike once again all dressed up with nowhere to go.

Bob Snyder

Spectral Brands

1984 | 00:15:00

[This] is my first attempt to construct a video piece using one set of generative intervals for both sound and color.