VideoStudio is an ongoing series of video and time-based art. Just as the frames of a video change with the passing of time, this project presents programs that rotate monthly. Programs include both compilations of work by several artists organized around a loose but pointed theme, as well as presentations of selected work by individual artists and art collectives. Expanding the Museum’s engagement with digital and new media practices, VideoStudio reflects the influence of recent technology on contemporary art. Focusing on emergent projects as well as on work that has played an invaluable role in the histories of modern art and black thought, this initiative explores video art’s experimental history and continued possibilities for shifting our perspectives as viewers, artists, individuals and communities.
During the fall/winter 2008-09 season, we featured video work by Elizabeth Axtman, Sanford Biggers, Jonathan Calm, Nanna Debois Buhl, Carla Edwards, Rico Gatson, Adler Guerrier, Jayson Keeling, Bouchra Khalili, Wangechi Mutu, My Barbarian, Robin Rhode, Abbey Williams and Lauren Woods.
Fall/Winter 2008-09 Calendar
November 12-December 11, 2008: Filmic
December 12, 2008-January 8, 2009: Psychogeography
January 9-February 12, 2009: Letters from the Left Coast . . .
February 13-March 15, 2009: Muted—
November 12—December 11, 2008: Filmic
Rather than using video as a tool for simple documentation or as a performance partner, the artists in Filmic took a critical look at cinema and its history, and turned their cameras on the camera itself. Since the earliest days of video art, artists have been cognizant of the medium’s predecessor in cinema, as well as cinema’s unique cultural place between fine art and mass culture. As such, cinema creates reference points for many people who are strangers to each other but carry shared memories and experiences from the movies they’ve watched. In this program, some artists borrowed liberally from commercial films, using clips as found objects. Others manipulated film images to create new cinematic collages, and still other artists reenacted famous scenes to examine how films create collective memories, shaping our sense of the world and ourselves.
Sanford Biggers (b. 1970, Los Angeles, California; lives and works in New York, New York)
Carla Edwards (b. 1977, Winfield, Illinois; lives and works in Brooklyn, New York)
Rico Gatson (b. 1966, Augusta, Georgia; lives and works in Brooklyn, New York)
Jayson Keeling (b. 1966, Brooklyn, New York; lives and works in New York, New York)
December 12, 2008—January 8, 2009: Psychogeography
Psychogeography: The study of the specific effects of the geographical environment (whether consciously organized or not) on the emotions and behavior of individuals.
From the Surrealists to the French avant-garde Lettrist movement, the city has been a privileged site for examining the psychological relationship to the space that surrounds us—a position most aptly described above by Guy Debord. Urban spaces can be limiting in their grid-like order, but liberating at the same time; “breaking the grid” exposes radical possibilities for reshaping the use of the city and even creating a new psychic relationship to ourselves. The artists presented in this program realize that transiting through any landscape is a psychological journey as much as it is a physical one. Whether moving through streets, in buildings or even across borders, the subjects of each of these videos—for the most part, the people are hidden or never fully reveal themselves—grapple with the consequences of being in and feeling out a space.
Jonathan Calm (b. 1971, Brooklyn, New York; lives and works in New York, New York)
Adler Guerrier (b. 1975, Port-au-Prince, Haiti; lives and works in Miami, Florida)
Bouchra Khalili (b. 1975, Casablanca, Morocco; lives and works in Paris, France)
Robin Rhode (b. 1976, Cape Town, South Africa; lives and works in Berlin, Germany)
January 9—February 12, 2009: Letters from the Left Coast . . .
January 9-25, 2009:
My Barbarian (Malik Gaines, Jade Gordon and Alexandro Segade; founded 2000, Los Angeles California)
January 28-February 12, 2009:
Lauren Woods (b. 1979, Kansas City, Missouri; lives and works in San Francisco, California)
February 13—March 15, 2009: Muted—
Bringing together videos in which viewers do not hear sounds that should correspond to the images we see, Muted— asks what kind of voice can be assigned to silent subjects. By drawing attention to these shifts in sonic quality, the videos in this program draw attention away from what we see, towards alternative forms of representation. Not all the videos are silent; yet, they collectively question the aesthetic structures that suture image to sound and give the viewer/listener/reader access to information. Barriers between viewer and image, as well as between artist and subject, emphasize the intractability of objects—art or otherwise—as well as the unrecognized world of their murmurs and mutterings.
Elizabeth Axtman (b. 1980, Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland; lives and works in Oakland, California)
Nanna Debois Buhl (b. 1975, Aarhus, Denmark; lives and works in Brooklyn, New York)
Wangechi Mutu (b.1972, Nairobi, Kenya; lives and works in New York, New York
Abbey Williams (b. 1971, New York, New York; lives and works in Brooklyn, New York)