I’ve organized this installation of early video artworks at Pioneer Works in Red Hook, Brooklyn.
The opening is Sunday, November 9, 2014 to coincide with the launch party for Pioneer Works in-house magazine, Intercourse. The exhibition will be on view from November 9 – November 16, 2014.
The magazine also includes an article I wrote about Radical Software (published 1971-75), the first periodical dedicated to the then-new medium of video. The launch party also includes open studios with Pioneer Works resident artists, a dance party, and live radio interviews on Clocktower Radio with Videofreek Skip Blumberg, curator Andrew Ingall, and me!
The installation mines Radical Software’s function as an exchange network for makers and thinkers to present a survey of the very earliest video art in existence. In the earliest days of video, the lines between art, documentation, journalism, and experimentation were either not yet existent or intentionally blurry. This collection of videos (some of which have never before been publicly screened) are examples of the range and depth of creative production made possible by access to video technology. Video made moving image media fast, accessible, and relatively cheap. While the visual quality of the medium wasn’t always great, playback could be immediate, allowing for instant results. Video is traditionally intended as a small-screen medium, to be viewed by individuals or intimate groups, rather than the cinema model of large audiences focused on a big projected image.
In SEND BLANK TAPE the videos are presented in the spirit of the early 70s Friday night video-screening parties held in the Spring Street, SoHo loft inhabited by members of the video art collective Videofreex. Included in this presentation are works by the aforementioned Videofreex, as well as individuals and collectives such as Raindance, Ant Farm, John Reilly, Community Video, and Ladies Home Journal. Installation images on my flickr here.