On the occasion of the New York edition of Moving
Image, the biannual contemporary art fair comprised entirely of video art, we
revisit our chat with the fair’s co-founders on the need for a moving
image-based fair, the allure of video art to collectors, and how advances in
online video display have increased opportunities for artists and galleries to
promote moving image works.
What is exciting about the market for video art, and why do you feel collectors
are gravitating toward moving image?
Winkleman and Murat Orozobekov: There’s so much happening in the world of video
art, it’s hard to know where to start really. From the world-class exhibitions
pushing installation standards, like the Steve
at the Schaulager in Basel, to the advent of online video-making
tools, like Vine
, to the blurring of the fine
art world and the commercial or Hollywood world, the medium is growing quickly
in all directions, and artists are clearly taking advantage of the
easier-to-access technology these days. It’s understandable, with more and more
artists being so invested in moving-image-based work that contemporary art
collectors have begun to pay more attention to it as well.
MO: Most traditional fairs make it somewhat difficult for galleries to present
many forms of moving-image-based work at them. It is done, of course, but not
at all in an ideal way from the viewers’ point of view in general. Booths at
traditional fairs are expensive real estate, and many moving-image-based works
require a good deal of space to be experienced on their own terms. Because we
work with a number of artists working in video and film at our own gallery,
because we believe their work is important and should be collected, because
more collecting decisions are being made at fairs than ever before, and because
most fairs don’t make it economically or logistically easy to present video art
in them, we decided someone should experiment with ways to improve presenting
video within the fair model. And so we created Moving Image to do just that.
What have been some of the challenges—and solutions—in incorporating moving
image-based work into a fair setting?
MO: The most challenging aspect of mixing time-based work and the traditional
fair model, of course, is getting visitors to slow down in an environment
designed to generate excitement and energy. At Moving Image we spread the work
out as much as possible. We provide lots of seating. We signal in every way we
can that the visitor is welcome to take their time and watch at their own pace.
In other words, we are seeking to find the right balance between an energetic
fair atmosphere and a place where we’re respecting the artist’s intentions as
much as possible.
Moving Image is invite only, what factors do you consider in choosing the
MO: For each edition of Moving Image we assemble a new Curatorial Advisory Committee
comprised of artists and independent (or sometimes institution-based) curators,
who are asked to select 10-15 artists they’re excited about to invite to
participate. We then contact their galleries and explain how Moving Image
works. Our goal at each fair is to present a cross-section of artists working
in the medium, mixing historical pieces with world premieres, and helping
visitors see the unique visual language that video artists are developing. It’s
also important to us that we bring together as much of a global selection as
possible each fair, and so the committee is always international in its scope.
What has been the impact of outlets like YouTube and Vine on the accessibility
of video art? Similarly, how does sharing works from the fair on an online
platform help support the mission of Moving Image?
MO: The recent advances in displaying video art online have greatly increased
the opportunities for artists and their galleries to promote such work. Before
the ease of uploading excerpts or full pieces to YouTube (or as is more
commonly used perhaps for fine art video, Vimeo), video was at a disadvantage
in the digital era compared with paintings
, or other media in which
collectors could get a pretty good sense of the work from a JPG. We view the
online platform that Artsy is developing for Moving Image as a huge step
forward in being able to offer visitors a useful “catalog” of the fair. Stills
from each work only tell collectors so much about it. We couldn’t be more
delighted to be partnering with Artsy, who have set the gold standard in
aesthetic and technical quality in the realm of online art viewing experience.
exciting about Vine and other online moving-image-art tools is how artists are
embracing and, of course, playing with them. At the last Moving Image in New
York, for example, a group of artists (organized by co-curators and art
writers, Marina Galperina and Kyle Chayka, in conjunction with New York’s Postmasters Gallery
), presented an installation of
Vine-created videos called “The Shortest Video Ever Sold.” The fact that some
of those six-second videos did indeed sell made news around the world. Marina
and Kyle teamed up again for Moving Image London 2013, with a new twist on
their Vine project called “National #Selfie Portrait Gallery
,” which featured several
artists from the US and UK pushing the technology around in ways only artists
would think to do.
Images: 1. Murat Orozobekov (left) and Ed