Dr. Michael Delahoyde
Washington State University


"As collage technique replaced oil paint, so the cathode-ray will replace the canvas" (Nam June Paik qtd. in Dempsey 257).

Technologies of movement and sound started being explored in the 1960s. A group of artists began taking on most powerful mass media tool: tv. They began including televisions in their creations and installations. The symbolic birth of video art could be pinpointed to 1965 when Nam June Paik puchased a Sony Portapak hand-held video camera.

Wolf Vostell (1932-1998) -- Fluxus artist.

Nam June Paik (1932- ) -- Korean artist and musician.

Marshall McLuhan Caged (1967)
McLuhan (1911-1980) proposed that changing the means of communication changes perception itself.

A Tribute to John Cage (1973)

TV Bra for Living Sculpture (1969)
Charlotte Moorman the cellist (1933-1991) wore a bra consisting of two tv sets with images changing along with the tones of the music: boob tubes.

Global Groove (1973)
Intended to expose the dangers of this culturally powerful medium.

Spontaneity, discontinuity, entertainment = the syntax of tv. "I make technology ridiculous," says Paik.

EAI -- Electronic Arts Intermix

Bill Viola (1951- ) -- large-scale installations of private scenes such as heart surgery, birth, death.

Nantes Triptych (1992)
Subjects include birth and death, in triptych form, central to the European Christian tradition, but the video provokes different responses.
Shirin Neshat (1957- ) -- Iranian.
Turbulent (1998)
A poignant testimonial to the different status afforded men and women in her country.
Tony Oursler (1957- )
The Influence Machine (2000)
An outdoor environment, London's Soho Square, turned into a psycho-landscape, with talking trees and buildings, talking heads in puffs of smoke, specters.

Works Consulted

Dempsey, Amy. Art in the Modern Era: A Guide to Styles, Schools & Movements. NY: Harry N. Abrams Inc., Pub., 2002.

20th-Century Index