Surveying the First Decade: Volume 2


Collection: Box Sets , Curated Compilations , Early Video Art

Tags: Activism, Documentary, Image Processing, Video History

Surveying the First Decade: Volume 2

This comprehensive package on the history of experimental and independent video is an essential tool for teachers, libraries, and researchers. Volumes 1 and 2 include over 16 hours of historic video on eight thematically curated programs, exploring conceptual, performance-based, image-processed, feminist, documentary and grassroots community-based genres.

Volume 2 includes:

Program 5: Performance of Video-Imaging Tools

Calligrams, Steina and Woody Vasulka, 1970, 04:00 (excerpted from 12:00)
Illuminatin' Sweeney, Skip Sweeney, 1975, 05:00, (excerpted from 28:38)
Video Weavings, Stephen Beck, 1976, 04:06 (excerpted from 28:00)
Five-minute Romp through the IP, Dan Sandin, 1973, 06:34
Triangle in Front of Square in Front of Circle in Front of Triangle, Dan Sandin, 1973, 01:40
Video-Taping, Ernest Gusella, 1974, 02:41
Exquisite Corpse, Ernest Gusella, 1978, 08:23
Einstine, Eric Siegel, 1968, 05:22
General Motors, Phil Morton, 1976, 10:25 (excerpted from 1:00:00)
Merce by Merce by Paik, Nam June Paik, 1978, 27:27
Crossings and Meetings, Ed Emshwiller, 1974, 04:04 (excerpted from 27:33)
Complex Wave Forms, Ralph Hocking, 1977, 04:11 (excerpted from 05:00)
Pictures of the Lost, Barbara Buckner, 1978, 08:04 (excerpted from 23:00)
Video Locomotion (man performing forward hand leap), Peer Bode, 1978, 04:56
Music on Triggering Surfaces, Peer Bode, 1978, 03:06
C-Trend, Woody Vasulka, 1974, 07:19 (excerpted from 09:00)
Switch! Monitor! Drift!, Steina Vasulka, 1976, 03:48

Program 6: Decentralized Communications Projects

Mayday Realtime, David Cort and Mary Curtis Ratcliff, 1971, 10:27 (excerpted from 1:00:00)
People's Video Theater (Women's Liberation March NYC, Gay Pride March NYC, Young Lords Occupy Manhattan Church, Native American Action at Plymouth Rock), People's Video Theatre (Elliot Glass and Ken Marsh), 1970-72, 28:22 (excerpts)
Participation, Steina and Woody Vasulka, 1969-71, 04:37 (excerpted from 30:00)
First Transmission of ACTV, George Stoney and Austin Community Television (ACTV), 1972, 04:31 (excerpted from 8:00)
Jonesboro Storytelling Festival: Kathryn Windham Telling Ghost Stories (The Jumbo Light), Broadside TV , 1974, 05:22
The Politics of Intimacy, Julie Gustafson, 1974, 09:26 (excerpted from 52:20)
Attica Interviews, Portable Channel, 1971, 08:44 (excerpted from 30:00)
Queen Mother Moore Speech at Greenhaven Prison, People's Communications Network, 1973, 17:41 (excerpted from 1:03:00)
The Laughing Alligator, Juan Downey, 1979, 26:30

Program 7: Critiques of Art and Media as Commodity and Spectacle

Eternal Frame, Ant Farm and T.R.Uthco, 1976, 22:19
Television Delivers People, Richard Serra and Carlotta Fay Schoolman, 1973, 05:55
The Business of Local News, University Community Video--Minneapolis, 1974, 16:57 (excerpted from 25:00)
Proto Media Primer, Paul Ryan and Raindance Corporation, 1970, 14:42
About Media, Anthony Ramos, 1977, 15:36 (excerpted from 26:00)
Fifty Wonderful Years, Optic Nerve, 1973, 25:59
Technology /Transformation: Wonder Woman, Dara Birnbaum, 1978, 05:25

Program 8: Independents Address TV Audiences

Healthcare: Your Money or Your Life, Downtown Community TV (DCTV), 1977, 57:00
The Ruling Classroom, Peter Bull and Alex Gibney , 1979-80, 57:38
Four More Years, Top Value Television (TVTV), 1972, 1:00:15

See also Surveying the First Decade and Surveying the First Decade: Volume 1.

Pricing Information:

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Included Titles

Calligrams is one of the Vasulkas' earliest experiments with altering the analog video image. An image is rescanned from the monitor "to capture and preserve the violated state of the standard…

Collections: Single Titles

Skip Sweeney was an early and proficient experimenter with video feedback. A feedback loop is produced by pointing a camera at the monitor to which it is cabled. Infinite patterns and variations of…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Image Processing, Video History

Inspired by the analogy between weaving (vertical warp threads traversed by horizontal weft threads) and the construction of the television image (vertical and horizontal scans of an electron gun),…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: Image Processing

In 1973, Dan Sandin designed and built a comprehensive video instrument for artists, the Image Processor (IP), a modular, patch programmable, analog computer optimized for the manipulation of gray…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Chicago Art, Film or Videomaking, Image Processing, Video History

In this elegant demonstration, Sandin explains the mistake of using common language concepts and spatial relations to describe what actually can happen on the video screen. The images generated in…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles

Ernest Gusella


1974| 00:02:41

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…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Image Processing

The "exquisite corpse" named in the title of this piece refers to a favorite game of the Surrealists, played by passing a folded sheet of paper among a group; each person draws one section of a body…

Collections: Single Titles

Eric Siegel


1968| 00:05:22

Eric Siegel, a child prodigy in electronics, built his first TV set out of scrap parts at the age of 14. He developed his first video synthesizer, the Processing Chrominance Synthesizer, in 1968-69;…

Collections: Single Titles

A response to the inability of his local General Motors dealer to fix Morton's 1974 Chevy van to his satisfaction, this tape blends experimental image-processing techniques with documentation of the…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: Image Processing

Merce by Merce by Paik is a two-part tribute to choreographer Merce Cunningham and artist Marcel Duchamp. The first section, “Blue Studio: Five Segments,” is an innovative work of video-dance…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: Body, Dance, Documentation, Image Processing, Performance, TV production, Portrait

Crossings and Meetings explores the image and sound of a walking man, expanding a simple image into increasingly complex permutations and arriving at what Emshwiller calls a "visual fugue" in time…

Collections: Single Titles

Produced without camera input, this intense electronic landscape transports the viewer into a world that is an abstract study in machine-generated imagery. Produced at the Experimental Television…

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Composed in 22 movements that introduce a series of silent, haunting, other-worldly landscapes, Pictures of the Lost hovers between figuration and abstraction, and reveals Buckner's sustained…

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"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…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Film or Videomaking, Photography, Video History

In Music on Triggering Surfaces, Bode constructs an interface between audio and video systems. The luminance information (voltage) from the visual images traversed by the black dot is routed to an…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Film or Videomaking, Image Processing, Video History

In C-Trend, one of Woody Vasulka's "dialogues with tools," the video raster, or monitor screen, is controlled by the Rutt-Etra Scan Processor, a scan deflection tool designed by Steve Rutt and Bill…

Collections: Single Titles

Switch! Monitor! Drift! is one of a series of "machine visions" constructed by Steina in the '70s. In this documentation of a studio landscape, two cameras' signals are combined through a luminance…

Collections: Single Titles

David Cort + 1 other

Mayday Realtime

1971| 00:59:45

Shot over one day, this program records the events and protests in Washington DC on May Day, 1971. This was the day when one of the most disruptive actions of the Vietnam War era occurred in…

Collections: Videofreex Archive, Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Activism, City, Documentation, Film or Videomaking, History

Ken Marsh + 1 other

People's Video Theater Reel

1971| 00:28:22

Contains excerpts from: Women's Liberation March NYC, Gay Pride March NYC, Young Lords Occupy Manhattan Church, Native American Action at Plymouth RockPeople's Video Theater (PVT) wrote that "the…

Collections: Single Titles

Vasulkas Inc


1969| 00:30:00

Shortly after they arrived in the United States from Prague in 1965, Steina and Woody Vasulka began documenting New York City's underground theater and music scenes with a portapak. Steina has…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: Interview

This video documents the first cablecast of Austin Community Television (ACTV) in which George Stoney and a group of University of Texas students assembled playback equipment on a hilltop at the…

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This tape features Kathryn Windham, a noted children's author and librarian from Selma, Alabama, relating a ghost story about "The Jumbo Light" at the 1974 Jonesboro Storytelling Festival. This…

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The setting for The Politics of Intimacy recalls the widespread consciousness-raising (CR) groups in the late '60s and early '70s inspired by the emerging feminist movement. CR groups provided a…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: Documentary, Feminism, Gender, Sexuality

Portable Channel, a community documentary group in Rochester, New York, was one of the first small format video centers to have an ongoing relationship with a PBS affiliate (WXXI). Portapakers…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: African-American, Crime or Violence, Incarceration, Interview, Race

Two years after the riots and deaths at Attica, New York, a community day was organized at Greenhaven, a federal prison in Connecticut. Think Tank, a prisoners' group, coordinated efforts with…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: African-American, Documentation, Incarceration, Politics, Race, Video History

The personal odyssey recorded in The Laughing Alligator combines methods of anthropological research with diaristic essay, mixing objective and subjective vision. Recorded while Downey and his family…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: Diary, Documentary, Expedition/Travel, Family, Film or Videomaking, Indigenous, Religion/Spirituality, Mental Landscape, Ritual

Ant Farm + 1 other

The Eternal Frame

1976| 00:24:16

Irreverent yet poignant, The Eternal Frame is a re-enactment of the assassination of John F. Kennedy as seen in the famous Zapruder film. This home movie was immediately confiscated by the FBI, yet…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Activism, History, Media Analysis, Performance, Politics, Video History

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 “…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Advertisement(s), Media Analysis, Video History, Television

Showcasing local documentaries made on 1/2" equipment, Changing Channels was a weekly alternative video magazine produced by University Community Video (UCV) and aired on public television station…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: TV production, Television

Paul Ryan + 1 other

Proto Media Primer

1970| 00:14:42

As one of the early media collectives, Raindance Corporation celebrated an eclectic use of the portapak by taping everything from man-in-the-street interviews to concerts and demonstrations. Intended…

Collections: Single Titles

Anthony Ramos

About Media

1977| 00:26:00

Anthony Ramos' astute deconstruction of television news focuses on his part in the media coverage of President Jimmy Carter's 1977 declaration of amnesty for Vietnam draft evaders. Ramos, who had…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: History, Media Analysis, Politics, TV production, Television, War, Journalism, Incarceration

Fifty Wonderful Years provides a behind-the-scenes look at the 1973 Miss California Pageant. In the early '70s beauty pageants across the country came under fire from feminists who targeted them as…

Collections: Single Titles

A stutter-step progression of "extended moments" unmasks the technological "miracle" of Wonder Woman's transformation, playing psychological transformation off of television product. Birnbaum…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Feminism, Media Analysis, Television, Video History

A classic exposé on the disparity of health care services for the rich and poor in America, this incisive investigative report exemplifies the advocacy journalism of the Downtown Community Television…

Collections: Single Titles

Peter Bull + 1 other

The Ruling Classroom

1979| 00:57:38

The Ruling Classroom documents a social studies experiment played out by seventh graders in Mill Valley, California. The students reorganized their classroom as an imaginary country until the…

Collections: Single Titles
Tags: Documentary


Four More Years

1972| 01:00:00

TVTV's inside view of the 1972 Republican National Convention made broadcast history. While network cameras focused on the orchestrated renomination of Richard Nixon, TVTV's rag-tag army of guerrilla…

Collections: Early Video Art, Single Titles
Tags: Documentary, History, Media Analysis, Politics, Video History