DISPATCH - DEC 31, 2012 (11:52 a.m.)


The trend was hard to miss--Video Art made its first widespread appearance in the Hamptons in 2012. Sprawling group shows, an important retrospective and installations by individual artists were presented throughout the summer at various venues. Mediums including participatory video, historic mediums, sculptural works, projections and installations incorporating sound or stills.

Considering its sweeping entrance into the Hamptons art scene, it's likely that video art will continue to be part of art in the Hamptons. Looking ahead, the Parrish Art Museum has just issued a call for artist-made short films and videos for the group exhibition "As the Eye is Formed" to screen in March 2013.

Here's a look at the emergence of video art as a major art medium exhibited in the Hamptons in 2012:

Guild Hall led the way with a walk through contemporary video art history in “Escape: Video Art” held from June 30 to July 29, 2012. The show was co-curated by Lauren Cornell and Hanne Mugaas. Cornell is the executive director of Rhizome and adjunct curator at the New Museum. Mugaas is an independent curator and the director of Salon 94 Freeman in New York City.

The works included video, reel-to-reel, video projection (with sound and without it) and live feed projections. The works were presented using the equipment as they were made. This led to a treasure hunt to secure television monitors from the seventies and eighties, VCRs, outdated projectors and other equipment to present the works as envisioned by the artists.

Exhibiting artists were Laurie Anderson, Burt Barr, Lynda Benglis, Jonathan Horowitz, Joan Jonas, Tony Oursler with Constance DeJong, Keith Sonnier, Andy Warhol (1928-1987) and William Wegman.

"Escape: Video Art" was the first museum exhibition on Long Island devoted exclusively to video art, according to Guild Hall museum director and chief curator Christina Mossaides Strassfield. As an added bonus, each artist in the show had a connection to the East End of Long Island.


Installation view of “Reel 4″ by William Wegman, 1973-74. 20:57 min, black and white, sound.


Detail of installation of “Channel Mix” by Keith Sonnier, 1972. Two wall projections using a variety of video equipment. Courtesy Guild Hall.


Installation view of "Wind" by Joan Jonas, 1968 and "Reel 4" by William Wegman, 1973-74 (right corner).


Watermill Center held a retrospective and tribute to Mike Kelley (1954-2012) that focused on his video art and films. Kelley took his own life in 2012 at the age of 57. Simply titled “Mike Kelley: 1954-2012,″ the exhibition claimed the entire South Wing of the Watermill Center and installed over two floors. The exhibition premiered on July 28, 2012 at Watermill Center's 19th Annual Summer Benefit (The Big Bang) and remained on view through Sept 16, 2012.

The show presented works from Kelley's “Kandors” project (2000/2007–2011). Installations included models and banners from the initial “Kandor-Con 2000” installation, seven large-scale projections (2007) and a sculpture with video projection of “Kandors” (2007). The “Kandors” series was launched in 1999. It is the based on the fated path of Superman’s birthplace of Kandor: its capture, purported destruction, miniaturization and placement in a bell jar for observation by its captor.

“Kandor-Con 2000” premiered in the millennium show at Kunstmuseum Bonn and was subsequently exhibited at the Technical University Berlin (2007), the Deichtorhallen Hamburg/Sammlung Falckenberg (2007), ZKM Karlsruhe (2008), the Shanghai Biennial (2008) and the Pompidou Center, Paris (2010).

Mike Kelley: 1954-2012 also featured Kelley’s last performance video (“Vice Anglais,” 2011), soundtracks from “The Poetics” (1977-1983), an art punk band that featured a collaboration between Kelley and video artist Tony Oursler, plus video works made with other artists.

“Mike Kelley: 1954-2012″ was curated by contemporary art collector and art essayist Harald Falckenberg. The tribute exhibition was presented by The Watermill Center in collaboration with the Luma Foundation.


Partial view of the “Kandor-Con 2000” installation by Mike Kelley. Photo by Lovis Dengler.


Detail from the “Kandor-Con 2000” installation by Mike Kelley. Photo by Lovis Dengler.


Still from "The Banana Man" by Mike Kelley, 1983. "The Banana Man" was Kelley's first completed video work. The artwork was Kelley's way of exploring character development in his performance art, according to the book Mike Kelley: Minor Histories : Statements, Conversations, Proposals (2004) written by Mike Kelley and edited by John C. Welchman.


The Parrish Art Museum delved into video art through a video installation by Jill Musnicki, presented through its Parrish Road Show. "what comes around" by Musnicki featured a three-screen video installation flashing around 100,000 still images captured by motion-activated surveillance cameras placed throughout the East End.

The images capture small things that happen in places still wild by nature and secreted from public places in the Hamptons. For the most part, the camera captured the life of wildlife. Images were dispersed with human moments that include painting a tunnel, cars streaking along a roadway, chickens innocently chased and more. Deer, birds, gophers and other animals can be considered the stars of the video piece.

The cameras rolled for four months, capturing nearly 100,000 still images. The exhibition also included photography made from video stills, a book, a map showing where the cameras were placed and the cameras themselves.

”what comes around” was exhibited at the Engine Barn of the Bridgehampton Historical Society on Aug 18 and 19, 2012. The show opened the evening of Aug 17, 2012.


"what comes around" by Jill Musnicki.


Image still from "what comes around" by Jill Musnicki.


Video art was included in the Parrish Art Museum's inaugural exhibitions when they reopened in their new location in Water Mill, NY on Nov 10, 2012. Included is Hope Sandrow's video "Untitled Observations."

"Untitled Observations" presents images of the moon projected through a telescope, guided telescope viewings of the sun, moon, and celestial bodies, according to the museum. The video is part of the "(Sky)gaze" portion of installation, which is part of Sandrow's museum-wide installation, "Genius Loci." "Untitled Observation" and "(Sky)gaze" both make reference to the ancient practice of seeking information about one’s environment by observing the sky.

"Genius Loci" launches Platform, a new series of artist solo installations of site-specific works inspired by the new museum and its grounds. It is exhibited from Nov 10, 2012 to Jan 31, 2013.

Galleries in 2012 also placed video art on center stage.

The Fireplace Project in East Hampton opened 2012 with "Video Lounge." The exhibition presented video works by various artists selected by gallerist Edsel Williams. It was held from May 26 to June 17, 2012.

Silas Marder Gallery in Bridgehampton presented video art and film screenings throughout its season. A long-standing proponent of film art, this year included the participatory video installation "Dandelion Clock" by John Carpenter. Installed as the single artwork in the second floor gallery, the large-scale interactive projection featured a dandelion whose seeds would periodically scatter.

The piece became engaged when visitors would step into the projection field. Small and large motion--whether incidental or purposeful--enacted the piece and the scattering motion of the dandelions.


"Dandelion Clock" by John Carpenter. Large scale interactive video installation.


QF Gallery in East Hampton presented "I Don’t Have Time for This Sh&t!” from Aug 4 to 12, 2012. The group show was co-curated by Karen Bookatz and Carrie Mackin. The exhibition was born from the idea that contemporary life doesn't allow for loafing around with every minute scheduled and accounted for. The tongue-in-check title was a subtle call to "slow down and revel in one of life's guilty pleasures: wasting time," according to the gallery.

Works included interactive video, video sculpture, HD video, extended time-based video and computational video. Exhibiting artists included Gabriel Barcia-Colombo, R. Luke DuBois, Yael Kanarek and Rirkrit Tirvanija.


"A Point Just Passed" by Gabriel Barcia-Colombo, 2012.


"Explosion 1960" by Yael Kanarek.


Video art was part of group shows presenting mediums that included photography, performance art, painting, sculpture and mixed media.

The Watermill Center's Summer Benefit, "The Big Bang" and continuing outdoor summer exhibition included "Home Sweet Home” by Tucker Marder. The piece looped on a large television set installed in a wooden section on the grounds.

Tripoli Gallery of Contemporary Art in Southampton presented video works as part of "Don't Waste My Time" - A solo show by Tin Ojeda. The exhibition included photography of clocks portraying "...the social significance of the proverbial clock and the role it plays in our culture today," according the gallery. The show also included video portraiture made with 16mm and spanning several minutes each. The works were installed as suspended projections on floating screens to provide the illusion of a three-dimensional person.  "Don't Waste My Time" was exhibited from Sept 29 to Oct 29, 2012.

Video art was presented within the July art fairs in the Hamptons. Notable was a sculptural and sound artwork by Tony Oursler presented by Galerie Forsblom from Helsinki, Finland at Art Southampton.


Detail of video and sound artwork by Tony Oursler, 2012. Steel stand projection and mixed media. Exhibited with Galerie Forsblom Helsinki, Finland.


RELATED STORIES: Video Art Takes Over Guild Hall Museum. Published Aug 7, 2012.

Performance Art Drives The Big Bang Over the Top. Published July 31, 2012. [Editor's Note: The Big Bang was the 2012 Summer Benefit for The Watermill Center]

Site Specific Installations Bring The Parrish Off Grounds. Published August 11, 2012.

QF Gallery exhibition images and information for "I Don’t Have Time for This Sh&t!”:  www.qfgallery.com.


© 2012 Pat Rogers and Hamptons Art Hub.

Don't miss a story!

We are on Social Networks

Comments are closed.

error: Content is protected !!