Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Cathy Begien in "California Video" @ The Getty Center

We're heading out to sunny Los Angeles for the opening reception of "California Video" at The Getty Center in a day or so. Posting will be light starting Thursday. As I've noted a few times (so sue me!), we're beyond delighted that gallery artist Cathy Begien's 2004 video "Black Out," was selected for the exhibition. Curated by the exceedingly charming Glenn Phillips, this exhibition promises to set a new standard for how a major institution thinks about, installs, and presents the video art it collects. Since acquiring the Long Beach Museum of Art Video Archive in 2006, the Getty now has one of the largest collections of video of any institution in the world. From the museum's press release:
California Video will feature more than 50 single-channel videos and 15 installations by 58 artists including Eleanor Antin, John Baldessari, Brian Bress, Nancy Buchanan, Chris Burden, Jim Campbell, Meg Cranston, Harry Dodge & Stanya Kahn, Allan Kaprow, Mike Kelley, Paul McCarthy, Bruce Nauman, Tony Oursler, Martha Rosler, Jennifer Steinkamp, T.R. Uthco and Ant Farm, Diana Thater, Bill Viola, and William Wegman.
The Getty has compiled a trailer of sorts, including a snippet from Tony Oursler's late 70's "Fish Videos," as a preview. I talked briefly with Glenn in Miami about the installation challenges of a video exhibition this large. He seemed to have it under control, but suggested it was some undertaking.

If you're in the LA area, please do stop in to see the show (or at least Cathy's piece ;-)). As Holland Cotter of The New York Times described it:
The reason to see this first solo show by the San Francisco filmmaker Cathy Begien is an ingenious, surprisingly intense short video called “Black Out.” In it the blindfolded artist delivers an episodic account of a bad-trip, club-hopping night on the town, as friends pop into the frame from the side to hand her drinks and cigarettes and act out parts of the story. When Ms. Begien breaks down toward the end of the film, it’s hard to tell whether she’s laughing or crying. Both responses make sense.

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3 Comments:

Blogger Joseph Giannasio said...

congrats to Cathy,
Getty now has one of the largest collections of video of any institution in the world

I am surprised by this for some reason, and also by some of the names you listed.
The reason is I guess I have a conception of the Getty (I was at the old one, haven't been to the new) as the Museum equivalent of the oak paneled, smoke filled, board room of the art world, that based on my visit to the old location, and the mission statement they had at the time.

I generally don't like video, until I see one I like, which basically is contributed to the fact that video equipment has become so readily available to anyone, that so much has been done, and so much of that not very interesting, so I begrudgingly watch video time after time until something stands out.

Another thing about video is some of the best I've seen usually take how it is presented into account which seems to make it easier to consider collectible, as opposed to say what could be posted on youtube
not to mention we still call it video but most of it is coming off DVDz (I'm just saying) which leads to archival nightmares, because I have found out that the cheap DVDz that artist usually buy will start to deteriorate in ten years, which leads to the big question of what, of a video, is usually sold to a collector?

I am interested in how the Getty answers your statement

this exhibition promises to set a new standard for how a major institution thinks about, installs, and presents the video art it collects.

I hope you return with a full report.

enjot LA-L.A. Land, don't forget to pack the sunscreen

Client #11

3/11/2008 08:58:00 AM  
Blogger Edward_ said...

Client #11

LOL!

I'll report back, Joseph. Thanks for the comment (and the chuckle).

3/11/2008 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger mbuitron said...

It's a great show!
http://imoralist.blogspot.com/2008/03/california-video-getty-center.html

3/14/2008 03:00:00 PM  

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