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Steina and Woody Vasulka fonds

Series: Events and Distributors


Events and Distributors. - (1958-1999) (particularly 1977-1979, 1981-1985, 1992-1996) . - 1.82 meter of textual documents.

Scope and content:

This series provides information on professional collaborations between Steina, Woody Vasulka and the organizations that exhibited their work from 1970 to 1999. In addition, the series reports the different stages in developing and organizing the main solo shows devoted to their work and also includes documentation of the group shows they took part in.

In New York in the early seventies, Steina and Woody Vasulka presented their first video experiments at alternative artists-run spaces like The Kitchen (New York, N.Y., United States) and at venues that screened documentaries and experimental films like the Anthology Film Archives (New York, N.Y., United States) and Electronic Arts Intermix (New York, N.Y., United States). Thanks to video programming organized by the Experimental Television Center (New York, N.Y., United States), Global Village (New York, N.Y., United States) and other organizations that nurtured a community of video artists in the seventies, Steina and Woody Vasulka were able to meet with their peers and discuss the results of their experiments, which were often conducted in isolation. During this pivotal period for the emergence of new practises, the couple was also involved in the first major video exhibitions mounted by leading museums and art centres in United States. Among these pioneering exhibitions were Video Art in 1975 at the Institute of Contemporary Art (Philadelphia, Penns., United States), Projects: Video IX in 1976 at the Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y., United States). In 1978, the exhibition Vasulka: Steina - Machine Vision/Woody - Descriptions at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery (Buffalo, N.Y., United States) delved into their installation practises.

In the late seventies and early eighties, Steina and Woody Vasulka began promoting their work abroad, particularly in France, Germany, Japan and Korea, as a strong network of organizations showcasing video and media arts was forged and a series of festivals and biennales got off the ground. In 1984, they were honoured with their first retrospective when CINE-MBXA/CINEDOC (Paris, France) held Steina and Woody Vasulka, vidéaste : 1969-1984 : 15 années d'images électroniques, analogiques et numériques. During this period, Steina and Woody Vasulka started linking up with distributors to get their videotapes seen: Montevideo (Amsterdam, Netherlands) CINEDOC (Paris, France), Video Data Bank (Chicago, Ill., United States), Electronic Arts Intermix (New York, N.Y., United States).

In the nineties, Steina and Woody Vasulka were the subject of several retrospectives: at the Kiasma Nykytaiteen Museo (Helsinki, Finland) in 1992, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (San Francisco, Calif., United States) in 1993, the Palazzo delle Esposizioni (Rome, Italy) in 1994, and the NTT InterCommunication Center (Tokyo, Japan) in 1998.

Steina and Woody Vasulka have created a file for each institution they collaborated with. Documentation connected with a recurring event such as a festival they took part in is found in the file on the institution. The files contain correspondence related to the initial contact with the organizations (official and unofficial applications, signed contracts) and to the subsequent stages of developing the exhibition or event (planning the layout, transporting electronic equipment and installation components, publishing catalogues or programs). The files also consist of notes or instructions on assembling the installations, contracts and official agreements for distributing videotapes, applications for artist fees, documentation related to the sale of works, manuscripts, press releases and kits, invitations, advertising and posters. A few files include press reviews of an event, although these are often incomplete. Examples are the press kits for the exhibitions Steina and Woody Vasulka, vidéastes : 1969-1984 : 15 années d'images électroniques, analogiques et numériques at CINE-MBXA/CINEDOC in Paris, France in 1984 and Steina e Woody Vasulka : Video, media e nuove immagini nell'arte contemporanea at the Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome, Italy in 1995. The series also contains published catalogues and programs for some solo and group shows.

Title based on the content of the series. - Documents in Korean, Czech, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Icelandic, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Spanish and Swedish. - Contains originals and reproductions. - The person who processed the documents established the arrangement of items in each file.

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Vincent Bonin © 2003 FDL