Autobiography

LYNDALE, 2018

LYNDALE is a story of shifting family dynamics, told through the relationship of two brothers. Shot on ten different video formats, this experimental documentary is both the story of a Chicago family, and a record of the digital revolution in the early 2000s. The piece takes place over a six-year period during which filmmakers Oli Rodriguez and Victoria Stob shared a house with Rodriguez’s brother, Jeff.

LYNDALE, 2018

LYNDALE is a story of shifting family dynamics, told through the relationship of two brothers. Shot on ten different video formats, this experimental documentary is both the story of a Chicago family, and a record of the digital revolution in the early 2000s. The piece takes place over a six-year period during which filmmakers Oli Rodriguez and Victoria Stob shared a house with Rodriguez’s brother, Jeff.

George visits underground filmmaker Robert Nelson in Milwaukee, and they brave the cold on Lake Michigan.

The New York City summer is fueled by the sultry emanations of hot air that tumble off the tongues of potential thespians as they attempt to decipher the gastric guesswork embedded in the prose of the pre-production process. The video camera flits across the boroughs of NYC in a splash-dash sojourn of sumptuous banquets and bohemian bombast, while the down-to-earth wisdom of the seeing impaired helps to guide the protagonist into detours of wisdom befitting his putrid project.

A chance to view the upper Bronx as a mantle of whiteness cloaks its natural splendor like icing on a cake and things all blubbery bob to the surface for air and a sniff of the "good life."

Segalove takes her mom as subject in these short pieces, recording her stories, her advice, and her daily routine. What results is a portrait of a contemporary mother-daughter relationship, touchingly devoid of drama and full of whimsical humor. For example, in one piece, Ilene’s mother laments over a pair of shoes her daughter has chosen to hang on the wall instead of wearing, saying,”With you, everything is art.” In another segment the camera focuses on a pair of unoccupied, overstuffed chairs.

George is invited to the AFI Video Festival to see the screening of his tape, Video Album 5: The Thursday People, but detours into a melodrama about the fear of internal spaces in buildings.

A five-minute video collaboration between Dani Leventhal and Steve Reinke.

A five-minute video collaboration between Dani Leventhal and Steve Reinke.

In My Dinner With Weegee Donigan Cumming weaves together two life stories. The central figure, a man in his seventies named Marty, remembers his experiences in New York as a young Catholic labour organizer and peace activist, his friendships with David Dellinger, the Berrigan brothers, Bayard Rustin, Weegee, and James Agee. This mixture of first-hand knowledge and gossip brightens Marty’s dark passage—he is old, sick, depressed, and alcoholic.

My Mother’s Place is an experimental documentary focusing on the artist’s mother, a third-generation Chinese-Trinidadian who at 80 still has vivid memories of a history lost or quickly disappearing. She conveys these with a storytelling style and a frankness that is distinctly West Indian. A tape about memory, oral history, and autobiography, My Mother’s Place interweaves interviews, personal narrative, home movies, and verité footage of the Caribbean to explore the formation of race, class, and gender under colonialism.

Nine Fish, 1996

From childhood memories to recurring nightmares, Nine Fish attacks and illuminates the indecision and confusion surrounding euthanasia and care of the elderly in the United States. In this deeply spiritual and personal video, director Kip Fulbeck chronicles his Cantonese grandmother's physical decline and its continuing impact on his family. The shifting complexities of personal identity, family communication, and cultural assimilation are explored through nine semi-fictional stories.

This piece purports to be about the discontinuation of the much-loved format, Kodachrome, and with it the further endangerment of super-8 film. But it has other agendas of reclamation and personal reckoning that are its true subject matter.

A trip to Winnipeg introduces the viewer to moments of Canadian cuisine and to the easily digestible tidbits that make up the WNDX Film/Video Festival. Come join the movie buffs as they beef up on eye candy and tummy truffles, all the while indulging in a masticating miasma of minutia that's easy to swallow. Wash it all down with some river views and Mr. Coffee secretions and you'll get a taste of the treats that await all who head north to appease the more southerly rumblings of the human anatomy.

This surreal, free-form autobiography is concerned with childhood and adult rituals, and the longing for meaning and connection during the often wildly absurd events of early life. Obsessive Becoming returns to Reeves’s early exploration of personal narrative forms, poetry, and his interest in creating a more spontaneous and direct fusion between language and video. Words and images of the expectations and disappointments of coming of age break down the boundaries of both mediums.

Are gender outlaws considered the new biological terrorists seeking weapons of mass bodily destruction? OPERATION INVERT compares the different regulations mediating botox-related plastic surgery and gender reassignment "sex change." Historical medical assessments of the invert (homosexual and transsexual) "condition" reveal seemingly outdated absurdities about outsider deviance. Nonetheless, current institutional loopholes governing gender re-assignment surgery suggest a fresh resurgence of loony pathology and diagnosis.

operculum, 1993

The artist visits with seven cosmetic surgeons specializing in blepharoplasty (cosmetic eyelid creasing surgery) in the West Hollywood/Beverly Hills area for initial consultation sessions. The doctors demonstrate different reshaping options and comment upon the prevalence and success rates for different Asian nationalities while Tran presents statistics and facts in text that frame the consultations.

This title is also available on Tran, T. Kim-Trang: The Blindness Series.

In Precious Products we are subtly reminded of this country’s obsession with consumerism and narcissism. George, with his ever-present video-8 camera, attends an opening of Precious Products—an exhibition of artworks satirizing art as commodity. He leaves the art world of San Francisco to spend a Christmas holiday with friends in their opulent home. Ironically, this is the home of a celebrity (another kind of commodity), Russian defector/ballerina Natalia Makanova. Surrounded by all the luxuries of life and Makanova’s image, George muses about death.

Susan Mogul's first video diary work, produced two years before Everyday Echo Street: A Summer Diary (1993), follows the artist on a trip though Eastern Europe immediately after the fall of the USSR. Through discussions with various characters about politics, art, and each others personal lives, Mogul creates a video time capsule of social life in Poland, then Czechoslovakia, and former Yugoslavia.

How do we tell the story of a life? What cruel reduction of an image will stand (in the obituary, the family photo album, the memory of friends) for the years between a grave and a difficult birth? Public Lighting examines the current media obsession with biography, offering up “the six different kinds of personality” (the obsessive, the narcissist) as case studies and miniatures, possible examples.

Thanksgiving in California is the setting in which the viewer experiences "the depression inherent to festive occasions. There were many things bothering me at this time, or maybe it was one thing that broke into many pieces.

This title is also available on The World of George Kuchar.

Return to the House of Pain documents my walking through the turf and sludge of the Big Apple and many worm holes... I chomp my way back west and gnaw on all that sinks stomachward and beyond in vertiginous aching.

Steve Reinke has long been lauded for his irreverent, philosophical, and often acerbic works, which typically adopt the form of personal essays to wryly bend and reread wide-ranging topics, from pop culture, to sex, to theories of visual perception and beyond. Reinke’s video, included in the 2014 Biennial, Rib Gets in the Way, is narrated in the first person by Reinke, and addresses mortality, the body, the archive, and the embodiment of a life’s work.

The Riot Tapes is a video biography of Segalove’s political involvement in college, of her boyfriend (who became anorexic while dieting to evade the draft), and of her discovery that art could give her a voice and a forum for her political views. It is her first real political work. Segalove says, ‘I’m trying to comment on the state of things. A lot of my peers spend a lot of time in a state of disbelief, but I’m tired of disengaging myself from the world by doing that.’”

—Gloria Ohland, “Segalove’s Latest Is a Riot,” L.A. Weekly 6:22 (27 April 1984)