This is a static page that is no longer maintained

Modernist and Post-Modernist Artists, Performers, and Film Makers:

Materials purchased with The Stuart and Gail Buchalter Fund for the Study of Contemporary Art

Abramovic, Marina.
An Event by Ulay
A performance art piece "exploring the interrelatedness of physical and mental realms" by two early artists, Ulay and Marina Abramovic. Galerie Mike Steiner, Berlin, 1976. (Purchased with Stuart and Gail Buchalter Fund for the Study of Contemporary Art) 26 min. Video/C 5364

Abramovic, Marina.
4 Performances by Marina Abramovic, 1975-1976
Contents: Art must be beautiful, Artist must be beautiful. -- Freeing the voice -- Freeing the memory -- Freeing the body. Galerie Mike Steiner, Berlin, December, 1976. (Purchased with Stuart and Gail Buchalter Fund for the Study of Contemporary Art) 54 min. Video/C 5364

Abramovic, Marina.
Relation Work, 1976-1979: 14 performances
Contents: Relation in space -- Talking about similarity -- Breathing in, breathing out -- Imponderabilia -- Expansion in space -- Relation in movement -- Relation in time -- Light/Dark -- Balance proof -- AAA-AAA -- Incision -- Kaiserschnitt -- Charged space -- Three.

Performance art pieces illustrating art in confrontation with life and the individual versus the universal by early artists, Ulay and Marina Abramovic. 148 min. Video/C 5366

Acconci, Vito.
Willoughby Sharp Videoviews Vito Acconci
Willoughby Sharp conducts an informal interview with video artist and performer, Vito Acconci. 1973 62 min. Video/C 5240

Acconci, Vito.
A video performance by Acconci, which illustrates his unique engagement of conceptual art, performance and Body Art. In this piece a woman kisses Acconci's body, covering him in red lipstick traces. Acconci then rubs his body against another man (Dennis Oppenheim), transferring the stains onto him. (Purchased with Stuart and Gail Buchalter Fund for the Study of Contemporary Art) 1970. 20 min. Video/C 5158

Acconci, Vito.
Association Area.
As a document of early performance art, this tape details the process of orientating the body and self in space, providing a physical metaphor for the process of adjusting oneself in society. Blindfolded, with ears plugged, two men try to sense each other's movements to assume the same motion and bearing. An off-screen voice, heard only by the audience, gives directions that would help them attain their goal. 1971. 61 min. Video/C 5207

Acconci, Vito.
Centers. (1971)
The film was made by Acconci's using the video monitor as a mirror. As we look at the artist sighting along his outstretched arm and forefinger toward the center of the screen what we see is a sustained tautology: a line of sight that begins at Acconci's plane of vision and ends at the eyes of his projected double. The result turns the activity around: a pointing away from the filmaker at an outside viewer. Video/C 5206

Acconci, Vito.
This film is an ironic collusion of private and public, of exposure and masking, a tense ritual wherein Acconci divulges and then censors his self-revelations. He turns on an audiotape of his own voice addressing himself and the viewer, recounting intimate details about his life. Whenever the material becomes too personal however, he tries to drown out his voice and prevent the viewer from hearing yelling "No, no, no, don't tell this!" He becomes increasingly agitated as the tape proceedes. 32 min. Video/C 5243

Acconci, Vito.
This documentation of a live performance at New York University, is a graphic exploration of the physical and psychological dynamics of male/female interaction, a study in control, violation and resistance. The camera focuses tightly on Kathy Dillon's face, as Acconci tries to pry open her closed eyes. Her body is a vehicle for a literal enactment of the desire for and resistance against intimate contact. 71 min. Video/C 5154

Acconci, Vito.
A performance videotape by Acconci who is known for his use of gesture, ritualized action and the human body as performance object. In this 3 part film Acconci, in a dark room burns the hair off of his chest with a candle, then plays with the illusion of having female breasts. In Parts II and III, Acconci continues to play with gender illusions via manipulations of his own body parts.1971. 66 min. Video/C 5152

Acconci, Vito.
One of Acconci's most compelling and controversial works, Undertone is a confrontational and coercive attempt to engage the viewer in an intimate, ultimately perverse relation with the artist as he expounds a masturbatory fantasy with the viewer as voyeur. 1973. 37 min. Video/C 5210

John Baldessari
Baldessari Sings LeWitt
Seated and holding a sheaf of papers, Baldessari proceeds to sing each of Sol Lewitt's thirty-five conceptual statements to a different pop tune, after the model of Ella Fitzgerald Sings Cole Porter. What initially presents itself as faintly humorous, gradually becomes a struggle to convey Lewitt's statements through this arbitrary means. 1972. 15 min. Video/C 4684

John Baldessari
I Am Making Art
In an ironic reference to body art, process art and performance, Baldessari challenges definitions of the content and execution of art-making. Performing with deadpan precision, he moves his hands, arms and entire body in studied, minute motions, intoning the phrase "I am making art" with each gesture, as if art were being created from moment to moment with each body movement. 1971. 17 min. Video/C 5242

Benglis Lynda
Lynda Benglis Paints With Foam.
This in-depth document follows Benglis' polyurethane sculptural process, from building the forms, mixing and pouring the foam, to completing the work through the combined efforts of her assistants. In a brief interview, Benglis discusses her relation to Pop Art and Abstract Expressionism, especially in regard to her pursuit of a "super-real" surface. 1971. 26 min. Video/C 5205

Benglis Lynda
A part of an ongoing video correspondence with sculptor, Robert Morris, this film brings together repeated scenes and gestures, featuring Morris and Jim Benglis, the artist's brother, and a narrative of irrelevant, confusing and often purposefully untrue statements. Although the viewer is inclined to accept Benglis' narrative as true, such trust is called into question by her statements about actions taking place off camera which cannot be verified. As Benglis' narration degenerates into a meaningless, repetitive pulse, Mumble disrupts the convenient fiction that the image presented on screen is complete unto itself. 1972. 21 min. Video/C 5211

Benglis Lynda
Throughout this video, Benglis asks "Now?!" as she makes faces and sounds and even kisses her own image on a monitor. The word "Now" used here as both question and command focuses attention on the deceptive "real" time of video. As her first color tape, Benglis experiments with the effect of unnatural color, turning up the levels until the colors are very high and artificial, which again disperses the idea of video as an impartial or "direct" medium. 1973. 13 min. Video/C 5208

Birnbaum, Dara
Technology/Transformation: Wonder Woman.
Utilizing segments from the original television program, Wonder Woman, this art video piece is a stutter-step progression of "extended moments" which unmask the technological "miracle" of Wonder Woman's transformation from a secretary into a "wonder" woman. Birnbaum considers this tape an "altered state" that "renders the viewer capable of re-examining the fodder that is our average television diet." 1978. 7 min. Video/C 5209

Burden, Chris.(On art and Artists)
In this documentary Chris Burden talks about his works of the past twenty years, from the performances of the seventies to the sculpture and installations of the eighties. 1989. 28 min. Video/C 5145

Burden, Chris.
Willoughby Sharp Videoviews Chris Burden.
Willoughby Sharp conducts an informal interview with modern artist and performer, Chris Burden. 1975. 28 min. Video/C 5241

Campus, Peter
Three Transitions.
In three short exercises, Campus uses basic techniques of video technology and his own image to create succinct, almost philosophical metaphors for the psychology of the self. In the first "transition," he appears to stab himself in the back, climb through the rupture in his body, and emerge whole on the other side. In the second execise, Campus wipes his face with his hand and "erases" its surface--only to reveal another image of his face underneath. Finally in conclusion, he appears to burn the living image of his face (as if it were a photograph), leaving only blackness. 5 min. Video/C 5153

East Coast, West Coast.
Artists Nancy Holt and Robert Smithson, a married couple until Smithson's death in 1973, filmed their 1969 discussion of contrasting lifestyles and approaches to artistic creation. Smithson championed a relatively loose, free-wheeling approach while Holt argued for a greater degree of order and conceptualization in life and art. 23 min. Video/C 5150

Ecstasy Unlimited: The Interpenetrations of Sex and Capital
Summary: A montage of skits, songs, and narrated film clips depicting the close connections of economic, political, and social systems with sexuality. Specifically, the film discusses how a capitalist society, the United States, can shape the way we view sex and sexuality. 60 min. Video/C 5244

Fox, Terry.
Children's Tapes
In this classic early video work, Fox constructs phenomenological dramas from the science of the everyday using fruit, a balanced spoon, a candle and other common items. Fox builds dramatic tension with an extreme economy of means while demonstrating basic physical phenomena. Focusing the camera close to his still-life objects, he constructs a series of elementary experiments that illustrate fundamental principles of physical science. The intimate scale, magnified view, and suspenseful unfolding of minute events in real time all serve to intensify the viewer's perceptions in these engaging mini-narratives. 1974. 30 min. Video/C 5245

Graham, Dan.
Recorded at Video Free America in San Francisco, this video art work is a phenomenological inquiry into the audience/performer relationbship and the notion of subjectivity/objectivity. Graham stands in front of a mirrored wall facing a seated audience; he describes the audience's movements and what they signify. He then turns and describes himself and the audience in the mirror. First, a person in the audience sees himself 'subjectively', next he hears himself described 'objectively' in terms of the performer's perception. 1975. 23 min. Video/C 5239

Hill, Gary.
Around & About
A speech-driven video art piece that self-consciously addresses the nature of a shared reality with the viewer. Around & About is an eloquently concrete conjunction of interiors and closed openings which provides a percussive backdrop for Hill's struggle to break through to the viewer, functioning both on the level of intimate dialogue and universal plea. 1980. 5 min. Video/C 5236
Hill, Gary.
Selected Works, I
Contents: Objects with destinations (1979, 3 min.) -- Windows (1978, 8 min.) -- Bathing (1977, 5 min.) -- Bits (1977, 3 min.) -- Mirror Road (1975-76, 7 min.).

Early formalist works which explore the manipulation of electronic color and image density through the camera obscura and image processing devices. In Objects With Destinations, ordinary objects move in staccato rhythm across the screen, washed with subtle hues. In Windows, the image of windows in a darkened room is digitized, densely layered, and otherwise abstracted in a series of graphic compositions. In Bathing, Hill transforms the traditional image of a bathing figure by subtly integrating color video and digitized, re-scanned stills. Bits is an abbreviated study of minutiae, textures and patterns, in which Hill explores editing techniques and rhythm. In Mirror Road, Hill creates an increasingly abstracted harmony of landscapes in layered compositions of movement. 1989? 27 min. Video/C 5237

Hill, Gary.
Selected Works, II
Contents: Electronic linguistic (1977, 4 min.) -- Sums & differences (1978, 9 min.) -- Black/white/text (1980, 8 min.).

In these early works, Hill explores the structural and organic relation of linguistics to electronic phenomena. In Electronic Linguistic, small electronic shapes on the screen move in a gradually accelerating rhythm. In Sums & Differences, images of musical instruments and their corresponding sounds are sequentially switched at an increasingly rapid rate. Black/White/Text is a linguistic deconstruction that represents the syllabic structure of words as text on the screen. 1977. 21 min. Video/C 5238

Jonas, Joan.
Glass Puzzle
This complex and enigmatic work, which is performed by Jonas and Lois Lane, explores female gestures, poses, the body and narcissism. Mirroring each other with synchronized movements as they perform as alter-egos, Jonas and Lane reference archetypal female gestures and poses from popular and traditional cultures. This evocative personal theater is a quintessential Jonas work with its idiosyncratic vocabulary of gestures, ritual and symbolism. 1973. 18 min. Video/C 5234

Jonas, Joan.
Vertical Roll
Using the technique of a continuous vertical roll, Jonas constructs a theater of female identity by deconstructing representations of the female body. Using her own body as performance object and video as a theatrical construct, Jonas unveils a disjunctive self-portrait. As she performs in front of the camera-- masked, wearing a feathered headdress, or costumed as a belly-dancer--her feet, torso, arms and legs, subjected to the violence of the vertical roll, appear as disembodied fragments. 20 min. Video/C 5157

Kubota, Shigeko.
Video Girls and Video Songs for Navajo Sky (1973)
A video "diary" of Kubota's stay with a Navajo family on a reservation. Featuring Kubota's often haunting, often witty electronic manipulation, this video document is an autobiographical journal of cultural identity and difference.

Luna, James
The History of the Luiseno People: La Jolla Reservation, Christmas 1990.
A Native American man makes Christmas phone calls to family members that he will not be with for the holiday, revealing his loneliness and alienation. 29 min. Video/C 5149

Mendieta, Ana.
Selected Filmworks: 1972-81.
A collection of experimental films by the early Cuban artist, Ana Mendieta.

Contents: Untitled (Chicken piece, shot #2), 1972 -- Body tracks (Blood sign #2), 1974 -- Laberinth Silueta, Silueta series (Labyrinth blood imprint), Mexico, 1974 -- Untitled (Grass breathing), 1975 -- Burial of the Nanigo (Woman candle silueta #2, New York show), 1976 -- Candle Ixchell, Black Ixchell series (Black Ixchell Candle Ixchell), 1977 -- Volcan de Arena, Silueta series (Filmworks: Rocas y humo, San Felipe), Mexico, 1980 -- Isla, Iowa, 1981 -- Untitled (Figura que parece Egypta), Cuba, 1981 -- Untitled (Figura, Gunpowder en los cracks), Iowa, 1981. 33 min. Video/C 5156

Nauman, Bruce
In this film an inverted camera catches Nauman standing at the opposite end of a room, slowly spinning around on one foot, first head down and then head up. The tape is an exercise in the human machine becoming some type of cog or mechanized weather vane. 62 min. Video/C 5148

Rosler, Martha
Semiotics of the Kitchen.
In this visual art piece the filmmaker names a series of alphabetically ordered kitchen utensils while demonstrating their use. 1975. 6 min. Video/C 5147 (also on tape Video/C 3181)

Serra, Richard
Prisoner's Dilemma.
Serra here relies on "game theory" to generate a play-acting situation that criticizes the (television) medium while remaining within it. He directs and "art-star" studded cast in a morality play, a mock game of catch-22. The situation is one of forced, mutual betrayal; it is impossible to win without betraying your comrade or without betraying your own best interest. Performer: Spalding Gray, Jeffrey Lew, Joel Shapiro. 1974. 40 min. Video/C 5204

Serra, Richard
Richard Serra Videoworks. Volume One.
Contents: Boomerang (1974, 10 min., col.) -- Television delivers people / by Richard Serra and Carlota Fay Schoolman (1973, 7 min., b&w) -- Surprise attack (1973, 3 min., b&w) -- Anxious automation (1971, 6 min., b&w).

Bommerang: Delves into the psychological aspects of video reproduction. Artist Nancy Holt's words are fed back to her over headphones with a slight delay built into the feedback, causing a dislocation between the action and the sound of speaking: a disjunction that makes her cripplingly aware of her expression. TV Delivers People: While canned Muzak plays, a continuous scrolling text denounces the corporate masquerade of commercial television to reveal the structure of profit that greases the wheels of the media industry. In Surprise Attack, a metal bar is tossed back and forth in Serra's hands while his voice, functioning as a paranoid metaphor, speculates on the nature and limits of self-defense. Anxious Automation involves time-space confusion. Two cameras zoom back and forth, both focused on Joan Jonas who is moving her arms over her head, resulting in a literal space jump and apparent time warp. Videocassette release of four films originally produced between 1971 and 1974. Video/C 5203

Copyright (C) 1996 by the Library, University of California, Berkeley. All rights reserved.
Document maintained on server: by
Gary Handman, Head, Media Resources Center.
Last update 4/20/98.

MRC web graphics by Mary Scott, Graphics Office, The Teaching Library