|Title||Testing the Curatorial in Artists’ Film and Video Installation|
This PhD by published work critically examines ten years of curatorial practice in the field of artists' film and video by the author. The aim of the thesis and publications is to question and challenge the contemporary integration of artists’ film and video installation into the language of the visual arts, the context of the white cube and the privileged definitions of curatorial practice. This PhD also places these questions in a historical context, taking into account the early and often overlooked developments of artists’ film and video exhibition.
This research was carried our through individual curatorial projects in the field by scrutinising specific constituent parts of artists’ film and video installation such as the screen, time, space, image, projection, site and audience. The curated exhibitions (the Projects) all took place at Ambika P3, a large postindustrial venue converted into a project space for this purpose in 2007. Each project manipulated these constituent elements and built on them in order to provide new artists’ commissions under the rigour of an experimental and research-led approach.
Through this commissioning process, this research developed new collaborative models of curatorial practice, examined and identified key critical areas of curatorial and artistic practice which have been overlooked by critics, writers, curators and the public and proposed new forms of artists’ film and video exhibition. This testing of the boundaries of artist’s film and video installation demonstrated that both the history and context of the practice is engaged with a broad range of paradigms inherited from cinema, sculpture and site specific practice. Furthermore it established that curation is a collective practice engaging numerous participants according to the needs and requirements of each project.
The projects revealed that a self reflexive and historically aware approach to curating artists’ film and video can deliver innovative and immersive works outside of the white cube, through an attention to materials, site and form. Through the publications and the commentary it is shown that a critical, collective and process based curatorial practice, attentive to context and its origins expands both the language and the power of the exhibited work.