ONE Night: EZTV, SIGGRAPH and Digital Art in West Hollywood, of which the Fly-By project is a part, has been moved from April 12 to May 31st. It has also moved from the outdoor parking lot that is was originally to be staged in, to a much larger, and much nicer park, across the street.
This is a good thing for many reasons. First it will become a much better audience experience, and this will also make ONE Night the inaugural event of a new, annual week-long arts festival, sponsored by the City of West Hollywood (WeHo), in which EZTV was born.
(above: public art work “the West Hollywood Sign”, a 60 foot piece of ‘sculptural graffiti’ by Michael J. Masucci , which stood next to EZTV, without the landowner’s permission, from 1986-91)
Often over-looked, in the first drafts of media art history, a new focus is emerging to reconsider the role that alternative art spaces played in building momentum for the pre-“world wide web’ digital revolution.
Since giving financial support a few years back, to USC’s ONE Archives, for the purpose of staging several art exhibitions and screenings involving EZTV’s earliest history, WeHo has become more and more interested in the various cultural contributions which EZTV has made, including in the area of the digital arts. And now the city has demonstrated an even greater commitment to putting a focus on this long-forgotten history.
ONE Night, is an evening-long retrospective of various digital artists in the late 1970’s and throughout the 1980’s, who standing on the shoulders of giants like LA-based artists John Whitney, Sr, and later David Em, were among the innovators giving birth to the rich and diverse digital media we now take for granted. Without a doubt, computer graphics were at the very heart of this revolution. From the GUI, which brought the use of computing to the uninitiated, to the vast reliance we now have on graphically based ‘apps’, the very use of computing as we know it would not have been possible without the innovations created and fostered by the early computer artists. CG allowed for everything from communities like Second Life to the over-the-top movie blockbusters which have bolstered the botton line of Hollywwod’s producers. Equally important, is the actual art created during this multi-decade in arts based research and investigation. Among the most embelmatic was the use of video projectors for site-specific public art. ONE Night focuses on artists who exhibited at both of two seminal LA based organziations, LA ACM SIGGRAPH and EZTV. Often collaborating together on exhibitions, these two groups formed an alliance of both ultra-high end and DIY creation.
Featured projection artists in this exhibition are UCLA Professor and Founding Chair, Department of Design/Media Arts Rebecca Allen, LA ACM SIGGRAPH Co-chair Joan Collins, artist Dave Curlender, CalArts Founding Chair of Film/Video Ed Emshwiller, artist Ron Hays, Otis College Asst. Professor and EZTV President Kate Johnson, artist Shelley Lake, EZTV founding-member Michael J. Masucci, and Professor and Chair of Visual Art at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore Vibeke Sorensen. Hopefully we can add a few other artists, space permitting. We are still reimagining the exhibition space, given the new venue.
Fly-By now gets a greater opportunity for audience.
In addition to the projection works, several new pieces, such as Fly-By, choreographed and performed by Donna Sternberg & Dancers, will be premiered. This will bring continuity to the traditions as well as recent innovations and draw parallels to other art movements which grew from small way-stations, often separated by great distances. Now those distances, as Vanessa Blaylock & Company routinely shows, have become moot, as time/space becomes an even less viable constraint to live performance and collaboration.
These new realities serve as powerful metaphors for the investigation, through arts based practice, of contemporary notions in physics.
Fly-By, with music by David Raiklen, is the first section to premier from an upcoming evening-length work In(the Dark), to be created in collaboration with EZTV, Donna Sternberg, Vanessa Blaylock , Christa Forster as well as scientists Dr. Brain Nord from FermiLab and Prof. Gregory Tarle of the University of Michigan,
Six weeks prior to ONE Night, A panel discussion about the event will be hosted by WeHo on April 15th.
More info on this panel soon.