New Video Art Night: As We Speak

Article by Michael Lawson | 25 Nov 2008

Dziga Vertov, one of the true pioneers of experimental cinema (he made Man With A Movie Camera, after all), was once quoted as saying that the analysis of narrative cinema was comparable to the analysis of the “contents of one’s own arse”. A trifle crude, and the likes of Godard and Fassbinder would only prove him wrong. But in the aftermath of some truly appalling narrative releases this year (Wanted, anyone?), it’s not difficult to discern more than a few screams of desperation from film and art lovers everywhere. Which is why an event such as As We Speak is more than welcome.

The brainchild of Glasgow based artists Catherine Weir and Rebecca Wilcox, this new, regular event was conceived in a deli over this year’s long, wet and miserable summer of Sex and the City. As We Speak takes place at Stereo on Tuesday 25 November, and will showcase old, new and exciting work by established and emerging video artists. As Catherine explains, “Both of us had been making our own video work but weren’t sure what to do with it, and we both knew loads of people who were in the same boat. We were actually surprised that there wasn’t a night like this happening in Glasgow already”.

The true origins of video art are debatable. Some have claimed Warhol as its founding father, others Nam June Paik, Fred Forest and Wolf Vostell (and even they’ve bestowed the title on each other). While many disagree on this, most will concede that making video art is the easy part: getting it shown is the toughie. The organisers of As We Speak, a Duncan of Jordanstone’s Time Based Art graduate and a Masters student at Glasgow’s School of Art (which gave us world renowned video artist Douglas Gordon), understand this better than anyone, which is why their open-door policy is more than worthy of applause. The programme will showcase stop-motion animation, pop promo remixes and taboo-breaking experimental pieces. The local cinemas will be serving Hollywood flash, bombast and syrup, not to mention indie-by-numbers. Recreate the excitement of watching films for the first time by indulging in some serious screen stimulation. As We Speak will give you something to talk about.