Annet Dekker, 10 December 2015, @ Alternative Film/Video Research Forum 2015, in Belgrade
Whilst video art is just being accepted in the commercial and museum art worlds, it is overtaken by the proliferation of web-based video that is increasingly delivered via all kinds of networks and based in databases. Rather than jeopardizing the market, as was often the rationale in the late 1990s, Internet helped the sell of video art, as a commercial gallerist mentions, “I would say the internet has been the best thing to happen to the market for video art. The ability to have an online catalog where you can actually see the images, well, “move,” has revolutionized communicating quickly what a video work is about. So much more than stills ever could”. Indeed, if the success of online video in general is any measurement (as predicted by Cisco by 2017 video will account for 69% of all consumer Internet traffic), video art can expect a glorious future. Or, will it? In what ways is web-based video similar to what has become known and established as video art? What are the implications of the ‘isolated object’ that video art has become, and the ‘networked environment’ in which web-based video is created, presented and distributed? In the discussion I will address the qualities of web-based video with a special focus on technology, aesthetics, presentation and distribution. I will argue that webs-based video is different yet the same as video art; foremost, its immersion – or being camouflaged – in a visual context makes it seem non-political, non-significant and non-aesthetic.
Image credit: Erica Scourti, My September 28th, 2015