The Emergence of Video Processing Tools Volumes 1 & 2 (Book)

Television Becoming Unglued

This book presents the development of early video tools and systems designed and built by artists and technologists during the late 1960s and 70s. Split over two volumes, the contributors examine the intersection of art and science and look at collaborations among inventors, designers and artists creating images in revolutionary ways.

Category: Cultural Studies


The Emergence of Video Processing Tools presents stories of the development of early video tools and systems designed and built by artists and technologists during the late 1960s and 70s. Split over two volumes, the contributors examine the intersection of art and science and look at collaborations among inventors, designers and artists trying to create new tools to capture and manipulate images in revolutionary ways. The contributors include 'video pioneers,' who have been active since the emergence of the aesthetic, and technologists, who continue to design, build and hack media tools. The book also looks at contemporary toolmakers and the relationship between these new tools and the past. Video and media production is a growing area of interest in art and this collection will be an indispensable guide to its origins and its future.

Kathy High is associate professor in the Department of Arts at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and an interdisciplinary artist working with science- and time-based arts.

Sherry Miller Hocking is assistant director at the Experimental Television Center.

Mona Jimenez is an associate professor and associate director in the Moving Image Archiving and Preservation Program at New York University.


Section 1: Histories

Introduction – Kathy High

Beginnings (With Artist Manifestos) – Kathy High

Mapping Video Art as Category, or an Archaeology of the Conceptualizations of Video – Jeremy Culler

Impulses – Tools – Christiane Paul and Jack Toolin

The Art-Style Computer-Processing System, 1974 – Tom Sherman

Machine Aesthetics Are Always Modern – Tom Sherman

Electronic Video Instruments and Public Sector Funding – Mona Jimenez

TV Lab: Image-making Tools – Howard Weinberg

The New Television Workshop at WGBH, Boston – John Minkowsky

The National Center for Experiments in Television at KQED-TV, San Francisco – John Minkowsky

The Experimental Television Center: Advancing Alternative Production Resources, Artist Collectives and Electronic Video-Imaging Systems – Jeremy Culler

Interstitial Images: Histories

Section 2: People and Networks

Introduction – Sherry Miller Hocking

From Component Level: Interview With LoVid – Michael Connor

Memory Series – Phosphography in CRT 5", Mexico, 2005 – Carolina Esparragoza

The Rhetoric of Soft Tools – Marisa Olson

Jeremy Bailey and His ‘Total Symbiotic Art System’ – Carolyn Tennant

De-commodification of Artworks: Networked Fantasy of the Open – Timothy Murray

Virtuosity as Creative Freedom – Michael Century

Distribution Religion – Dan Sandin and Phil Morton

A Toy for a Toy – Ralph Hocking

Woody Vasulka: Dialogue With the (Demons in the) Tool – Lenka Dolanova with Woody Vasulka

A Demo Tape on How to Play Video on a Violin – Jean Gagnon

Application to the Guggenheim Foundation, 1980 – Ralph Hocking

Thoughts on Collaboration: Art and Technology – Sherry Miller Hocking

Interstitial Images: People and Networks


Section 3: Tools

Introduction – Mona Jimenez

Mods, Pods and Designs: Designing Tools and Systems – Kathy High

Computer-Based Video Synthesizer System, ETC – Donald McArthur, Walter Wright and Richard Brewster

Design/Electronic Arts: The Buffalo Conference, March 10–13, 1977 – John Minkowsky

Instruments, Apparel, Apparatus: An Essay of Definitions – Jean Gagnon

Expanding ‘Image-processed Video’ as Art: Subverting and Building Control Systems – Jeremy Culler

The Grammar of Electronic Image Processing – Sherry Miller Hocking

ETC’s System – Hank Rudolph

On Voltage Control: An Interview With Hank Rudolph – Kathy High and Mona Jimenez

'Insofar as the rose can remember…' – Carolyn Tennant

Analog to Digital: Artists Using Technology – Yvonne Spielmann

Analog Meets Digital In and Around the Experimental Television Center – Kathy High, Mona Jimenez and Dave Jones

Multi-tracking Control Voltages: HARPO – Carl Geiger and Mona Jimenez

Finding the Tiny Dot: Designing Pantomation – Mona Jimenez

Preserving Machines – Mona Jimenez

A Catalog Record for the Raster Manipulation Unit – Mona Jimenez

Copying-It-Right: Archiving the Media Art of Phil Morton – Jon Cates

Proposal for Low-cost Retrieval of Early Videotapes Produced on Obsolete Equipment and/or Videotape That Will Not Play Back, or Resurrection Bus (1980) – Ralph Hocking

Interstitial Images: Tools


'Provides a new angle on the history of art and technology'

The Videofreex, Andrew Ingall
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