DANIEL #304
       
     
TIME/ENERGY PANEL #1
       
     
HAND
       
     
SWAN
       
     
POT
       
     
FINGERS
       
     
LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #8
       
     
LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #10
       
     
LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #9
       
     
DANIEL #304
       
     
DANIEL #304

(17" x 20," edition 1 of 8, Archival Pigment Print, 2015)

Works by Woody Vasulka

Opening Reception Friday, August 7th 5-8pm

Show runs through Saturday, August 29th

Woody (Bohuslav) Vasulka was born in Brno, CZ in 1937, studied in Prague, where he met and married Steina Bjarnadottir, from Iceland, and together they emigrated to the U.S. in 1965.   Individually and together, the Vasulkas have been at the international forefront of video and electronic media arts since 1969. In 1971, they founded The Kitchen in New York City, the first international center for video and new music arts presentations.

Woody and Steina have been based in Santa Fe since 1980.

 Woody Vasulka’s early creative works pioneered the investigation of ‘signal’ as syntactic visual language, experimenting with most electronic imaging and sound synthesis/processing systems, leading from analog to digital to photonic tool applications and transcendent artistry.   Woody’s theatrical installations using robotics and software-controlled interactive components to explore new forms of techno-spatial narrative, have been presented internationally since the 1980s.

Woody Vasulka was Professor at the State University, Buffalo, NY from 1973-79, and has guest instructed at higher education and creative research institutions over 45 years, extensively mentoring and collaborating with many other new media creators.   Among his many awards and honors, Woody is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, Siemens Media Art Prize conferred by ZKM, Karlsruhe; was founding artistic director of OASIS (Open Archiving System with Internet Sharing), funded by the EU; is Professor in the Faculty of Fine Arts at the Technical University, Brno; and has been awarded honorary doctorate degrees by the Prague Academy of Performing Arts and by the San Francisco Art Institute. The Vasulkas are Icelandic National treasures.

The Dynamic Vasulka Archives, as a major preservation, research, educational, public access and international cultural cooperation project, are now being located at the Brakhage Center, University of Colorado, Boulder, and at the Vasulka Stofa, the newly opened contemporary chamber of the National Gallery of Iceland, in Reykjavik.

TIME/ENERGY PANEL #1
       
     
TIME/ENERGY PANEL #1

(31" x 35," edition 1 of 6, Archival Pigment Print, 2015)

Time/Energy Structure of the Electronic Image is a large work dating from 1974-75.  The images were produced on a scan processor (Rutt/Etra Model-4, Rutt Electrophysics, Inc.), a toll providing various means of reprogramming electro-magnetic conditions around its display cathode ray tube or CRT.

Compared to my previous work on videotape, the work with the scan processor indicates a whole different trend in my understanding of the electronic image.   The rigidity and total confinement of time sequences have imprinted a didactic style on the product.    Improvisational modes have become less important than an exact mental script and a strong notion of the frame structure of the electronic image.   Emphasis has shifted towards a recognition of a time/energy object and its programmable building element – the waveform.

The majority of images, still or moving, are based on their capture from the visible world with the help of the camera obscura principle through a process involving the interaction of light with a photo-emulsion surface.    The conversion of light into a code occurs simultaneously at each part of the emulsion in exposure time.   Contrary to this, the conversion of light into energy potentials during electronic image forming is achieved sequentially, giving particular significance to the construction of the referential time frame. (The single value on the pick-up tube has to possess exact time coordinates in order to be reproduced in the identical position on the display.)   The organization of energy components even in a tele-vision camera is of course provided by the camera obscura present in front of the image pick-up tube.

The possibility of disregarding this organizational principle and realizing instead a total absence of such a process in certain modes of electronic image forming has interested me the most.   The result has been an inevitable descent in to the analysis of smaller and smaller time-sequences a process necessary to understand wave formations, their components, and the process of their synthesis and programmability.   To me this indicates a point of departure from light/space image models closely linked to and dependent upon visual-perceptual references and maintained through media based on the camera obscura principle.   It now be-comes possible to move precisely and directly between a conceptual model and a constructed image.   This opens a new self-generating cycle of design within consciousness and the eventual construction of new realities without the necessity of external referents as a means of control.                                            

-Woody Vasulka

(Reprinted from Afterimage, Oct/1975)

HAND
       
     
HAND

(17" x 22," edition 1 of 8, Archival Pigment Print, 2015)

SWAN
       
     
SWAN

(17" x 22," edition 1 of 8, Archival Pigment Print, 2015)

POT
       
     
POT

(17" x 22," edition 1 of 8, Archival Pigment Print, 2015)

FINGERS
       
     
FINGERS

(17" x 22," edition 1 of 8, Archival Pigment Print, 2015)

LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #8
       
     
LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #8

(40" x 40," edition 1 of 5, Archival Pigment Print, 2014)

Lucifer’s Commission is the title for this series of abstract still images that have been used, processed, recorded, printed and otherwise presented by Woody Vasulka since the early 1990s.  They are derived from found objects; 2’’ x 2” glass slides.   Starting life as film-printed stencils for electronic circuits, the slides somehow became discards.  They found their way to the LANL junkyard and to the Black Hole, where they were rescued by Woody.   Many of the slides were then inadvertently put outdoors with other trash and forgotten about; left to be exposed to the elements, to the effects of moisture, to temperature changes, to dirt and pollution, deterioration of emulsion and other organically induced surface changes, until rediscovered more than a year later. 

Their altered destiny as recycled ‘works of art’ (a word he would never use) is far from their military-industrial origins. Scanned, enlarged and printed, the processed images embody hidden stories of climate change, of nuclear testing, of technological symbolism, of the human condition and of the impermanence of media and memory; diabolical abstractions to spark our imaginations.

 

LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #10
       
     
LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #10

(40" x 40," edition 1 of 5, Archival Pigment Print, 2014)

LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #9
       
     
LUCIFER'S COMMISSION #9

(40" x 40," edition 1 of 5, Archival Pigment Print, 2014)