Tuesday, 1 October 2019

Hello World

Destructural Video was a blog that I began in 2009 whilst I was a BA Fine Art student at the University of Cumbria. Originally used as a means of sharing research (photos, essays, website links, videos etc) on a very specific strand of video art history (glitch aesthetics, creative misuse of equipment and so on) that I found particularly interesting, it then led to a number of personal artworks/assignments for my course, the main subject for my final year dissertation, a short-lived but quietly influential Facebook group and a one-off curated screening organised as part of Leeds International Film Festival in 2011. Just as the concept was gaining some traction and interest from fellow video artists, curators and supporters (as well as future political author/activist, Malcolm Harris), I wiped all of the blog posts and the Facebook group from the internet, abandoned the "Destructural Video" concept I created and left a barebone trace of its former presence online. As much as I would love to say that it was all a carefully planned decision, it was more a case of personal struggles in my life getting in the way that lead me down a self-destructive path, thus I eradicated most of my presence online. Glitch happens!

Anyway, given that I haven't updated this blog in years and I noticed that some of the links on the right were dead, I've since fixed them all (including, most importantly, my BA (Hons) dissertation). In addition, I've added archive grabs of the old Facebook group that I ran in 2011 which I subsequently discovered on an old hard drive. I still have some old research information that I collected between 2009-2011 too - maybe I'll repost some of these online too.

In the meantime, I highly recommend that you visit the blog Video Circuits run by my good pal and early DV supporter Chris King who kept tirelessly championing obscure video art history when I didn't! In addition, his Video Circuits Facebook group has now become quite the important resource for all creators and researchers of analog video art synthesis. Please show your love and support to Chris as he's always done the same for me, even during my dormant years!

And a bonus link - Isabella Adronos contacted me years ago to share her BA dissertation that explored glitches and the sort in analog film. I think it makes an excellent companion read to my video counterpart, so please check that out too. I hope you're keeping well, Isabella, wherever you are!

What else... oh yes, if Clint Enns is reading this, I hope you're keeping well too and you're now living somewhere much warmer than Winnipeg! Your curation, videos and KG uploads were very inspiring to me whilst putting my ideas together and you tipped me off to so much great work. However, I read your Structural Digital Video article for INCITE and it would have been nice if you made a reference to my dissertation (where else could you have made the connection to Bill Viola's Hatsu-Yume but from me?) - but still, I forgive you! There's a link to said article on the right, along with his Centre For Destructural Design manifesto, conceived with Andrew Milne in 2010.

Of course, we're all guilty of parallel plagiarism; after submitting my dissertation and graduating, I subsequently discovered and read Lucas Hilderbrand's chapter in his 2009 book Inherent Vice (published earlier than my dissertation) which coincidentally shared quite a surprising number of quoted works and thoughts much like mine... if I knew about that whilst writing mine, I would have had to start my approach over again.

Well, that's about all for now. Until next time (2029?)...

John McAndrew
October 2019

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Limerent Objects

Hello all,

So after a year of inactivity I'm getting back into being productive again...

I've started a new project called Limerent Objects that's dedicated to organising film/video screenings in Leeds centered around underground music culture - the first event is taking place on February 14th 2013 at Wharf Chambers where I'll be screening some little seen videos made by the sound art project Nocturnal Emissions. Here's all the info for it:

Limerent Objects is proud to present a Sterile Records double bill screening of: 
BLEEDING IMAGES (1982, 46 minutes, VHS)
Perhaps THE quintessential audiovisual statements of the post-industrial music scene. Provocative in content, prescient in style, these medium-length videos captured the subversive interests and activities of the pioneering sound art project The Nocturnal Emissions against a contextual backdrop of the UK between 1981 and 1984; a time rife with mass unemployment, civil unrest, media hysteria, political indifference, terrorism and war overseas. Burroughsian cut-ups reveal subliminal imagery hidden in exploitative mainstream broadcasting; shocking images of real-life violence against living beings are critically employed to expose our complacency in everyday cruelty; the thunderous soundscapes and ritual performances of The Nocturnal Emissions awaken the viewer’s senses to our undermining culture controlled by fear and repression… 
Rarely viewed since their initial home video releases and screenings at the Tate and ICA in the UK as a result of the imposing 1984 Video Recordings Act, both videos remain impressive today as early influential examples of the extended music video and key moments of the British independent video art movement. Countless artists and broadcasters have emulated or outright stolen the ambitions, aesthetics and techniques used in the videos of The Nocturnal Emissions, either directly or through watered-down copies - few however can match the tremendous power of the original works which are long overdue public and critical reassessment in these increasingly pertinent times. 
This screening is taking place at Wharf Chambers Co-operative Club in Leeds on February 14th 2013. Free entry with small donations welcomed. Doors open at 19:30. A short talk and introduction by the organiser will precede the first video at 20:00 - second video will be shown after 21:00. Please be aware that these videos contains flashing images and some footage that may disturb those of a sensitive disposition. 
Special thanks to Nigel Ayers/Earthly Delights and Piitu Lintunen for making this event possible.
Facebook event page 
*Wharf Chambers Co-operative Club is a members’ club, and you need to be a member, or a guest of a member, in order to attend. To join, please visit wharfchambers.org. Membership costs £1 and requires a minimum of 48 hours to take effect.*

You can find Limerent Objects on Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter - I've also registered a Blogspot, YouTube and Vimeo but I'm not sure what I'm going to do with those just yet...