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Adjust your comfort level


Post by Ditta Baron Hoeber


I agree that video can sometimes feel uncomfortably slow but when it’s good, video slows you down to show you something and to surprise you.

Sometimes the surprise of seeing may not feel like a reward. Sometimes it’s uncomfortable even repugnant. I think the point of art is provocation. That can be pleasurable but sometimes the pleasure is just in recognizing that your mind has been disturbed and pushed into seeing something unfamiliar. [image is from master of the disturbing video, Paul McCarthy and Mike Kelley’s 1992 “Heidi.”]

That’s a pretty traditionally accepted purpose of art. I think it applies to video art as well. When video doesn’t have a payoff, that’s not because its video — that’s because its bad video and bad art.

–Ditta Baron Hoeber is a Philadelphia artist and writer whose poetry and photographs appear in the Drexel online journal.