Club Video

Club Video - Part V (2-screen compile) 4 minutes, stereo mix © 1985

Background

Club Video is a 2-channel video with options for stereo or quadraphonic audio. Multiple monitors have also been employed in some installations. The work is produced solely from source/cut-up fragments from a set of classic genre movies, to which a range of tape-manipulated music fragments from records have been synchronized. The work references the then-emergence of multi-screen environments with blaring club music, generating an ironic dissolution of 'video art' back into the pool of video imagery which proliferated in multiple 'non-art' contexts in the mid-80s.

Club Video originated from an invitation for a solo exhibition at Artspace, Sydney.

Credits

All video & audio editing - Philip Brophy
Thanks to Rob Jordan (RMIT) and Gary Sangster (Artspace)

2013

Frankfurt Filmmuseum, Frankfurt

1990

SOUND BASIS VIDEO ART FESTIVAL, Wroclaw Poland
Melbourne Cinematheque, Melbourne

1987

Soundtrack mini-LP released on Present Records
Music-video clip

1986

Alabama Halle, Munich
RECENT AUSTRALIAN VIDEO INSTALLATIONS - ACCA, Melbourne
Melbourne International Film Festival, Melbourne

1985

Artspace, Sydney
MAKING APPEARANCES - Charlottenburg Gallery, Copenhagen
TALKING BACK TO THE MEDIA - Time Based Arts, Amsterdam
Student Cultural Centre, Belgrade

Club Video Part I - dual screens © 1985

Overview

Original 1985 catalogue notes

Club Video utilizes the structural concept of "Beat" as outlined in an earlier → ↑ → performance Formula Disco (1980):
* Performer + Language = "Artist"
* Beat + Overlay = "Disco"
* Artist + Disco = "X"
The result is that anything can be overlaid in a fairly indiscriminate fashion over a repetitive rhythmic structure to produce a rhythmic form.

The early video Ads delineates a controlled environment of multiplicity in the interplays of its selected imagery. Club Video mixes this approach with the narrativity of the selected films, reassembling semantic threads and visual icons to tell stories untold in the original films. Using montage as a constructional tool, both Ads and Club Video simply convert informational inputs to outputs in the style of what could be called "musique concrète".

Before the advent of computer technology which facilitated the advent of digital sampling of sounds, musique concrète existed as a viable materialist way of manipulating sound. The method of musique concrète (or magnetic tape manipulation) used in Club Video attempts to achieve a homogenous sound rather than a disorienting, fragmented effect more typical of musique concrète.

Club Video Part II - dual screens © 1985

Technical

Image

Club Video consists of two U-Matic 3/4" tapes that are synchronized. and played on two separate decks, connected to any number of monitors (sometimes two, sometimes four, etc.). The viewer watches the two tapes together. The work (played across the two simultaneous tapes) is divided into five sections. Each section lasts about five minutes and features images made up solely from a classic film from a classical genre. Each section is a condensation of key scenes, motifs and elements from the pertinent films:

the Musical (The Kid from Spain, 1932)
the Gangster movie (Scarface, 1932)
the Western (Stagecoach, 1939)
the Juvenile Delinquent film (Touch of Evil, 1958)
the Horror film (Psycho, 1960)

All video editing was done on lo-band U-Matic. No effects post-production was employed.

Club Video Part III - dual screens © 1985