Artists' Television Access

Electronic Infinite

The Video Meditations of Van McElwee.

Friday, July 16, 2004, 8:00 pm, $5


A showcase of cosmic consciousness, this screening will exhibit over an hour of short films by Van McElwee. McElwee’s work is challenging, yet engaging. While pushing video editing to it’s limits, his films are still capable of centering the audience on simple beauties. Despite McElwee’s Midwestern base of operations (Webster University, St. Louis), he brings the entire world into his work. Films that will be screened at this showing include Stupaform (an enchanting meditation on Buddhist architecture from various Asian countries) Waveform Modulation (Shot at the H2O expo, Zierikzee, The Netherlands), and Heliogos (where six years-worth of garden walks are cut and folded as a playful edit-form spins its web), as well as many others

Van McElwee:
Van McElwee’s oeuvre includes over 30 videos and installations that have been exhibited extensively in festivals, galleries and museums worldwide. His work is described as “The expansion of consciousness, the creation of timelessness and the generation of new worlds”.
Van McElwee’s body of work encompasses over thirty videotapes and installations. These pieces have received many grants and awards and have been screened extensively at museums, galleries, and film festivals worldwide.
Selected one-person shows and installations include, in New York: The Kitchen, Thread Waxing Space, Artopia Gallery, C-Space at Citicorp Center, and a videowall at the Continental Insurance Building Atrium. In Europe: Galerie Trabant and Medienwerkstatt in Vienna; a ten-year survey at Rencontres Video Art Plastique in France; Argos Gallery in Belgium; F.A U.S.T. in France; and installations at art fairs in Paris, Brussels, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, and Zurich. Other one-person shows and installations include: Pacific Film Archive at University Art Museum Berkeley; a retrospective and six installations at The Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis; a Virginia Museum of Fine Arts touring exhibition; a videowall for the Dallas Video Festival at the Dallas Art Museum; The International Symposium on Electronic Arts in Montreal; and a commissioned installation for the COSI museum in Columbus, Ohio.
Selected group shows include: The Paula Cooper Gallery, NYC, The Long Beach Museum of Art, Ars Electronica, The Oberhausen Film Festival, The Wexner Center for the Arts, The New York Video Festival, The Berlin Film Festival, The London Film Festival, Film+Arc, The Worldwide Video Festival, Impakt, The Black Maria Festival, and others.
Television broadcasts include: Germany, Switzerland, France, and Latin America. McElwee’s work has been shown on over 260 PBS stations in the United States.
Other awards include: The American Film Institute Independent Filmmaker Award; Honorable Mention at Film+Arc in Austria; the Grand Prize at the N.A.P. Biennial, the Experimental Video Award at the Athens International Film and Video Festival; the Award of Excellence, Award of Recognition, and the Wendy Hearn Invitational Award at the Missouri Video Festival; Director’s Choice Award from the Black Maria Festival; Award of Merit from the Sinking Creek Festival; a Jury Award from the New York Expo; and the Center for New Television Consulting Award.

The result of extensive location shooting, Stupaform gathers into one moment the myriad manifestations of the Buddhist stupa, or pagoda. Stupaform oscillates between the inner and outer aspects of this symbol of transcendence, distilling an essence. The actual structures become electronic phenomena, apparitions of the stupa’s inner form. The sound of a Nepalese bell follows this vector, a physical reflection of an unstruck vibration.
Audio playback level: moderate 2002, stereo. 7:30

Waveform Modulation:
In this piece, a radical work of Dutch architecture becomes the raw material for a series of experiments with time. Born in a computer, the building jumps again into video where it can mutate freely. Here, particles become pixels and matter becomes light, as the structure is melted, frozen, shattered, and melted again into a new, transmissible signal.
Shot at the H2O expo, Zierikzee, The Netherlands.
Architect: Lars Spueybroek/NOX
7:35 minutes. Stereo.

Three garden paths twist and turn though a labyrinth of time. The earth orbits the sun as a camera orbits the gardens. Six years are cut and folded as a playful edit-form spins its web.
Audio playback level: moderate 2001, stereo. 11:00


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