Re: Vj Art

From: Flick Harrison (email suppressed)
Date: Sat Dec 13 2008 - 13:52:49 PST

David Rimmer has been VJ'ing lately, showing his experimental films as
dance party visuals, I believe, though I haven't seen his shows. He
did a gig, for instance, at the Juicy Danger Meets Burning Man DVD
launch party.

Is Rimmer here listening? Thoughts?

As far as I'm concerned, VJ'ing at parties is part of the move away
from what McLuhan would call linear media - text, radio etc that you
receive to as a solid stream of input - towards web-like media that
hit you from various angles and you can choose what to focus on (tv,
internet). I know he uses "hot" and "cool" to describe them but
that's arbitrary silliness and I never remember which means which.

VJ Visuals aren't meant to be consumed beginning-to-end and simply
compliment the audio; and the music, dancing and costume / clothing,
decor, what you drank or smoked etc is all a seamless part of a wiki
creative experience.

When I do visuals, I try to integrate it into my body of work, however
ephemerally, the same way I'd use a video installation, or video-for-
theatre, to advance my thing. What am I concerned about? What do I
want the audience to get out of this, knowing they may see only part
of the screen, for only a few moments at a time, and maybe out of
order? While they're engaged in a mind-altered mating ritual?

But like every form, an artist who jumps into visuals from another
form is going to bring baggage / experience - someone who comes from
party organizing is going to use it to up the party ante, someone who
comes from new media is going to probably link into the web / other
distant nodes etc and expand the party's borders. I come from cinema
so that's how I approach it. I've seen people project porn at a dance
event, which has obvious visceral functionality...


On 13-Dec-08, at 1:07 PM, James Cole wrote:

> It seems like there has been an uptick in VJ stuff around these
> parts lately, which raises some interesting questions about how VJ
> media relates to the more established forms of avant-garde cinema
> (although the use of the word "established" is pretty generous even
> in the cases of people like Deren and Brakhage; but that's a
> different discussion).
> I tend to not be very charitable in my appraisal of VJ media; for
> several reasons. Primarily, because it seems like it is mainly
> intended (indeed, best suited) to accompany electronic dance music;
> I can't see myself wanting to go into a cinema, sit as the lights go
> down, and watch two or three hours of VJ media. Furthermore, it
> doesn't seem to have much to do with cinema in general; the editing
> is very basic, repetitive, and usually not all that thoughtful. And
> the imagery is even worse than the editing, more often than not.
> The times I've seen VJ performances, the imagery seemed more like an
> extension of a club's usual strobe lights and fog machines; much
> more atmospheric than expressive. Maybe VJing is just bad in Boston?
> On the whole, though, when I hear the term "VJ art," it strikes me
> the way people talk about "video game art," or "sneaker art" It's
> obvious someone with a high level of skill made something that
> demonstrates their high level of skill, at times it's pretty
> aesthetically breathtaking, but it doesn't strike me as something
> that anyone will be, or ought to be, interested in a few years down
> the line.
> To be totally honest, the video that you sent looks like it could
> have been produced by a computer program; I can't read any thing
> into it, and I can't get anything from it. I'm not trying to be
> nasty; I'd really like to know how I'm supposed to approach
> something like that. It certainly resists the sort of approaches
> one would use at a film by Su Friedrich or Hollis Frampton or Ernie
> Gehr or whoever. Instead, I end up reading it as a type of
> decoration; Christmas lights for bad music, which is probably way
> too dismissive. At least, I'm sure isn't how people interested in
> VJ art would look at it. The fact that you're sort of asking for
> feedback suggests that you see it as more than that (after all,
> people who design Christmas lights probably don't have any desire to
> show their work and ask for feedback).
> So I'm asking you, and anyone else who wants to take up the
> question; what am I missing? How should I watch this? How does it
> fit in with the type of film this list usually discusses?
> -James
> On Sat, Dec 13, 2008 at 3:21 PM, jaime cleeland
> <email suppressed> wrote:
> can be found here:
> Thank you for your interest.
> __________________________________________________________________
> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.
> __________________________________________________________________
> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.

For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.