August 29, 2009

No Place Like Home: "Lossless"

I'm helping to curate some of the video submitted for the Dallas Video Festival this year. The mound delivered for my review has yielded several gems so far, including 4 works from a series called Lossless by Rebecca Baron and Douglas Goodwin (the visuals here don't do them justice).

Looking for more info, I came across this post on diagonal thoughts – please go there for the text, which is excellent. In a nutshell, the artists use various techniques to reveal, among other things, the discrepancies between various versions of vintage films, visually evincing, e.g., what is lost even in supposedly "lossless" compression. Among other questions, the series asks, what is "home" – without these techniques, can we know whether the version we're viewing is the original? and which version should be considered "original," given that the version we've grown up with may have been compressed or otherwise altered?

To my mind, Lossless also relates to the historiographic trend noted in my posts on Barney, Linzy, and Trends at the 2009 NYC Fairs and in Nicolas Bourriaud's recent comment to the effect that for artists, history is the last undiscovered continent, a jungle to be explored.

(By the way, there will be no The Program this year, but as usual, the regular Festival will include some video art. The Festival dates will be Thur., Nov. 5 - Sun., Nov. 8 – block them out!)

More info on Lossless at diagonal, Rebecca Baron's site, Douglas Goodwin's site, and the Video Data Bank.

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