David Cort, ‘Mayday Realtime’, 1971, Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI)

In this classic video verité documentary, Cort records a demonstration against the Vietnam War in Washington D.C. on May Day, 1971. Describing the event as "a day filled with moments of expectation and violence," he focuses on the dynamics of the demonstration and the police response. Armed with his portable video equipment, Cort confronts the police and interacts with the crowd — he is an active participant, both as a demonstrator and documentarian. Providing an unmediated, first-hand record of the event, Mayday Realtime serves as a time capsule of the antiwar movement and the countercultural era, and exemplifies the political stance and subjective approach of early "guerrilla television."
Post Production: Electronic Arts Intermix.

Image rights: Courtesy Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI)

About David Cort

David Cort was a pioneering media artist and activist of the late 1960s, whose involvement was in large part because of his attraction to the newly invented portable video camera. Cort, who has a background in theater, initially began creating his body of work by documenting political events, and eventually amassed hundreds of hours of footage. From these, he created interactive environments, installations, and “video theater”. Cort was also famed for his involvement with Videofreex, a media collective active in the countercultural scene of New York in the 1970s, which subsequently founded the premier pirate TV station LanesvilleTV. In reflecting on his involvement with video art, Cort has said: “It’s almost like a responsibility you have to take, that you have to work with because it’s all-pervasive.”

American , b. 1935, based in East Weymouth, Massachusetts