This first work in the HalfLifers'Action Series plunges into a world of frantic heroes trapped in a continual crisis of dissolution and reification. An ordinary domestic setting is recast as a psychoactive landscape in which the concept of function becomes situational and fluid. Only through the strategic application of organic and inorganic “devices” can this zone be successfully navigated and the mission be saved.
San Francisco is a city where the virtual and the real co-exist. It is both a center of multi-media and Internet activity, and a city with a vibrant street life and commitment to public space. Awakening From the 20th Century explores these issues by asking the questions: Is life becoming virtual? Are we witnessing the end of the city? Will the computer replace the automobile?
"A film about the time of the blast furnaces--1917-1933--about the development of an industry, about a perfect machinery which had to run itself to the point of its own destruction. This essay... on heavy industry and the gas of the blast furnace, convinces through the author's cool abstraction and manic obsession, and through the utilization of a single example of the self-destructive character of capitalistic production: 'The image of the blast furnace gas is real and metaphoric; an energy blows away uselessly into the air. Guided through a system of pipes, the pressure increases.
BIT Plane is a highly compact spy plane, wingspan 20 inches, radio-controlled, video-instrumented and deployed over areas of scenic interest. Due to its refined dimensions, BIT plane is able to enter territory inaccessible to other aircraft. Pioneering flight: in an aerial reconnaissance over the Silicon Valley, California 1997, BIT plane flew solo and undetected into the glittering heartland of the Information Age.
An Anthology of Collaborative Works by Guillermo Gómez-Peña
This "conceptual package" of collaborative videos and writings by leading theorists is a unique opportunity for students, artists and educators to explore the psyche, experimental aesthetics, activist ethos and spiritual cosmology of legendary rebel artist Guillermo Gómez-Peña.
Isaac Artenstein, Adriene Jenik, Patrick Litchy, Jethro Rothe-Kushel, Daniel Salazar, Henry Sayre & Sandy Brooke, Roberto Sifuentes, Liz Singer, Gustavo Vazquez
(chatlandia) uses the public bathroom stall as format and metaphor for Internet relay chat lines (IRCs). The video's soundtrack is composed from transcripts of actual IRC sessions; the conversations emerging from this institutional facade speak of lust, intimacy, spunky women, and "what Desiree wants," calling into question the division between humans and machines.
Taiwanese artist Shu Lea Cheang (b. 1954) tackles conceptions of racial assimilation in American culture, examining the political underbelly of everyday situations that affect the relationship between individuals and society.
China Town traces copper mining and production from an open pit mine in Nevada to a smelter in China, where the semi-processed ore is sent to be smelted and refined. Considering what it actually means to "be wired" and in turn, to be connected, in today's global economic system, the video follows the detailed production process that transforms raw ore into copper wire--in this case, the literal digging of a hole to China--and the generation of waste and of power that grows in both countries as byproduct.
"code switching began as a contemporary reaction to Adrian Piper's Cornered (1988). It goes on to explore the fracturing of contemporary identity within modern culture, and the mechanisms by which individuals assign and create the cultural, racial, personal, and social identities around us. We all have codes by which we interact with and interpret others. Depending on what situation we are in, we adopt the appropriate persona to fit the occasion, constantly creating representations for others to read appropriately.
During 1998 and 1999, Pelon participated in various Internet newsgroups and lists where suicide is the main subject. Stories unfolded as the film was made; some reached the point of no return. The subject of suicide is very candid on the Internet, due to its anonymity and the freedom it allows from the usual taboos around the subject. The newsgroups and lists have become a relatively safe place for the many people that find themselves isolated because of their interest in the idea of suicide.
This European flavored melodrama depicts a fictional country of refined manners and debased desires that explode into chaos, sending its prodigal son into the pit of 20th Century technology. That technology externalizes his hidden beauty just as he tries to hide the heritage of horror which was the curse of his lineage. That curse now threatens the already damned.
e-[d]entity: Female Perspectives on Identity in Digital Environments is a two-part collection of videoworks created from 1982-2000 that explores the cyber environment and how it affects, expands, confuses, and involves female identity.