Scattergories for video

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Post by Franklin Einspruch of artblog.net

[Editors’ note–Franklin is reponding to Collette Copeland’s last post Tuesday, Sept. 9, on whether pigeonholing video as a cousin of film helps or hinders the discussion about video as an artform.]

The impulse for categorization is not simply a taxonomic exercise – it informs the viewer about how to approach the piece and gives the artist a context to work in, or against. All forms are hybridizations to some extent – it’s nothing to be ashamed of. But video has a larger overlap with other forms than, well, other forms. I observe that video artists embrace the categorical ambiguity of what they’re doing. If they want to feel denigrated by the observation that what they’re doing is categorically ambiguous, I suppose that’s an option as well. [Image is from Doug Aitken’s “Interiors” (2002), which showed at the Fabric Workshop recently.]

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