From the Archives | Video in America
The Everson’s commitment to video art began in 1971 with the launch of one of the first exhibition programs in the country to feature the work of video artists, and today the Everson’s historic video art collection contains over 400 tapes. Over the last several years, the Museum has worked to conserve and digitize a significant portion of the collection and this exhibition features a number of the newly digitized works.
MARCH, ATLANTA, GA
On view through March 31
The March selection of Video in America is an overdue pairing of two old friends: JD Walsh and Sarah Hornbacher. Walsh moved to Atlanta at age twenty-two to teach at the Atlanta College of Art. The chair of the video departmentat the time was Hornbacher, a boundary-buster in the realm of site-specific, environmental video installations. Years earlier, when Hornbacher was a student at the Center for Media Studyat the State University of New York Buffalo, she studied with many of the first pioneers in video art: Paul Sharits, Woody Vasulka, Gerald O’Grady, Hollis Frampton, and Tony Conrad. For many years the avant-gardevideo community was active in Central and Upstate New York. Hornbacher first visited the Experimental Television Center located in Owego, New York in 1976 and she returned frequently until the center closed in 2011.
Hornbacher uses forever evolving machines to explore her deep fascination with light and surface. She manipulates found and filmed footage to tease our conventions of time and space. Walsh also keeps us between moments when we stop existing in reality and when fantasy begins. Untitled RPG, utilizes the language of game-theory, especially Role-Playing Games (RPGs). The work brings together a moving picture within a moving picture, stitching seemingly mundane genuine moments at the beach or having picnic on the grass, birds balancing atop a tree or the m1 bus arriving at the Kmart Pharmacy in NoHo.
Daniel Fuller is the curator at Atlanta Contemporary, a position he has held since December 2014. Prior to this he was the Director of the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) at Maine College of Art. He has curated exhibitions at ice fishing shacks, a swap meet, the JumboTron of a minor-league hockey stadium, on public access television, and in several closets. Fuller received his MA in Museum Studies from Syracuse University. He has written for 032c, Art in America, Afterall, Art Asia Pacific, Art Papers, Frieze, and numerous artist catalogs. A book of essays titled This is not here was published in 2018 with Publication Studio. He has previous curatorial experience with the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage in Philadelphia and Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art in Peekskill, NY. Fuller was born and raised in Syracuse.
Digital Media Artist, Concept and Realization
Numerical Studies Series, 1977, black & white, silent, 5 min, courtesy of the artist
Numerical Studies Series, 2014 -2019, black & white, stereo, 17 min, courtesy of the artist
Sara Hornbacher is a pioneer of video art and digital imaging. After receiving an undergraduate degree in Fine Art, she completed a Master’s degree at SUNY Buffalo in 1978, where she studied video with the Vasulkas, Paul Sharits, and Tony Conrad at the Center for Media Study. Hornbacher was guest editor of the first CAA ART JOURNAL issue on Video in 1985. She completed her first residency at the Experimental TV Center in 1976 and her annual residencies at ETC continued through 2011. Her annual Signal Culture residencies began in 2014 and continued annually through 2018. The artist’s single-channel video works and multi-media installations have been exhibited throughout the United States, Europe, Australia, and Japan. In 2012, she became a Legacy Artist at The Burchfield Penney Art Center in Buffalo, NY and her video work is being archived at the Rose Goldsen Archive at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY.
Untitled RPG, 2008, digital video, 7:36 min, courtesy of the artist
JD Walsh is a multimedia artist. He has exhibited at galleries internationally including Halsey McKay, Cleopatra’s, 106 Green, Brennan & Griffin, and Nicole Klagsbrun in New York, Atlanta Contemporary, Galerie Steinek in Vienna, and Cooper Cole in Toronto. In 2012 his public art installation Ensemble for Mixed Use was commissioned by the City of Toronto for the 2012 Nuit Blanche festival. His work has been written about in Artforum,Flash Art, and Sculpture Magazine, among others. His ongoing music project Shy Layers has garnered critical acclaim and was listed as one of the top twenty electronic albums of 2016 by Pitchfork.
January-February, Syracuse, NY
I'm an insect but I love you like a mammal, 2018
Tom Sherman is best known for his video art addressing relationships between humanity and machines. Many of his works incorporate text and explore nature, death, human-machine relationships, and modes of communication. I am an Insect, but I love you like a mammal centers on a police camera located at 900 Ackerman Avenue in Syracuse to explore the mixed emotions people feel about security cameras. Sherman’s footage exposes the police camera, invading its privacy in a manner similar to how the camera invades the privacy of its subjects. Subtext narrates the film, questioning whether there is anyone actually monitoring the video footage or if the camera functions as a scarecrow, simply changing the neighborhood’s perception of safety while having little impact on the actual situation.
Referred Pain, 2019
Interested in the ways western medicine acknowledges and attempts to alleviate physical and emotional pain, Rachel Fein-Smolinski draws inspiration from narrative fiction with supernatural elements and intuitive details of medical history. Referred Pain is a meditation on empathy and questions what it means to be a woman in pain. In her videos, Fein-Smolinski performs as an alter ego that stems from her upbringing as a Jewish woman in a religion that, according to the artist, idealizes intellect to the point of fetishization. Her use of the word “referred” in the title of this video references a medical referral, the process of transferring something from one person to another, and as another word to think about empathy.
The video begins with the camera focused on moths trapped in a moth catcher while a voice asks, “Do you think there are moth power dynamics?” immediately questioning the hierarchies that exist within and between particular species. Weaving together images of Daphnia Magna (spineless planktonic crustaceans with huge hearts, that can reproduce sexually or asexually), footage of a young man pole dancing, medical animations of her spinal cord, and a tender scene of a woman apologizing to a dead bird as she sweeps it up and places in a trash can, Referred Pain points to the difficulty we have relating to other people’s experience of pain. This is an opportunity to discuss the loneliness and isolation that accompany our experience of pain, the difficulties associated with pain, and what it means to be cared for.
March 21, 6:30pm
FREE Third Thursday admission
Video art discussion with Lorna Mills, Emily Vey Duke, and Tom Sherman. In conjunction with the exhibition Lorna Mills: Ghost Jets.
April 18, 6:30pm
FREE Third Thursday admission
Video art discussion with the Khalil brothers, Ojibway filmmakers, Adam & Zack Khalil. In conjunction with the exhibition Adam & Zack Khalil: New Work.
A exhibition featuring a career spanning survey of work by pioneering video artist Frank Gillette.
Untitled RPG, 2008
Digital video, 7:36 min
Courtesy of the artist
Rachel Fein-Smolinski, Referred Pain, 2019, Everson Museum of Art
Tom Sherman, I'm an insect but I love you like a mammal, 2018, Everson Museum of Art