Theoretical Television

Tom Sherman

1977, 28:50 minutes, colour, English


Theoretical Television was an electronic, cable television ‘publication’ of Sherman’s “Art-Style Computer-Processing System,” a now frequently cited theoretical text on foundational video art aesthetics. This text, now widely republished in print, was originally published in the Journal for the Communication of Advanced Television Studies (London, UK) in 1974. The ‘ASCPS’ conceptually commodified the open-ended, full-spectrum video synthesizer as a device with a set of predetermined ‘vision circuits’, pre-set filters for generating art styles through the controlled manipulation and distortion of straight, representational video material. Theoretical Television was produced by Rogers Cable and cablecast extensively in Toronto in 1977. This text-rich program was illustrated with computer-processed moving image sequences by Jane Wright using the Paik-Abe analog video synthesizer.

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