Critical Writing Index

I'm Having A Flashback: Video Data Bank revisits video's formative years in Surveying the First Decade.

by Danielle Schwartz

The Independent, July 1997, pp. 28-31

Danielle Schwartz reviews an ambitious joint project between the Video Data Bank, Electronic Arts Intermix and the Bay Area Video Coalition. The 17 hour anthology series released by the Video Data Bank titled Surveying the First Decade: Video Art and Alternative Media in the United States, 1968-1980 shows the work of fifty artists, in 34 complete videos and 27 excerpts. The series is accompanied by a publication Rewind which includes writings from curators and scholars as well as articles and manifestos from collectives and artists from the time period. Starting in 1968, the year Sony released the Portapak, to 1980, Surveying the First Decade forges a dialogue between video art and video made by activists, firmly planting video art's formative roots in political activism.

The anthology, intended for educational and institutional use, preserves many of these tapes, which would have otherwise been lost to technological obsolescence, providing a history of video which is an alternative to broadcast media in the United States.

ITEM 1997.125 – available for viewing in the Research Centre

Videos, Artworks and Artists Cited

Media BurnAnt Farm

Video LocomotionPeer Bodes

Stephen Beck

Vito Acconci

Shigeko Kubota

Vertical RollJoan Jonas

People's Video Theater

Portable Channel

Healthcare: Your Money or your LifeDowntown Community Television

Port Huron Statement (Manifesto)Students For A Democratic Society

Radical Software (Periodical)Raindance

Stamping in the StudioBruce Nauman

CalligramsWoody Vasulka

CalligramsSteina Vasulka

Vita Statistics of a Citizen, Simply ObtainedMartha Rosler

Female SensibilityLinda Benglis

Television Delivers PeopleRichard Serra

Television Delivers PeopleCarlotta Fay Schoolman

Switch! Monitor! Drift!Steina Vasulka

Selected WorksWilliam Wegman

Eternal FrameAnt Farm

Eternal FrameT.R. Uthco

Fifty Wonderful YearsOptic Nerve

ParticipationSteina Vasulka

ParticipationWoody Vasulka

Mayday RealtimeDavid Cort

Mayday RealtimeCurtis Ratcliff

Austin Community Television

Four More YearsTVTV

The Business of Local NewsUniversity Community Video