Dreamkeeper: 1989, 5:00, 3-channel installation
A narrative composed of multiple, simultaneous, and intersecting threads. It is composed for a landscape oriented frame, with with two black bars interrupting.
The second in a series of three-channel analog video installations. The others are Footprints (1988), and Mask (1990).
Collaboration: Coulibali Aboubacar, and Jembe orchestra, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.
Footprints: 1988, 5:00, 3-channel installation
Mask: 1990, 5:00, 3-channel installation
Wassa (“come out and play” in Wolof): 1989, 3:00
Wassa is a set of intentions finding expression ina video poetic form, and in the process illuminate next steps in my art-making and research.
The initiating intention of Wassa was to compose a music video, suitable for television broadcast in Francophone West Africa. This project began at the suggestion of Moustapha Thiombiano, musician/performer, composer, and owner of the Wassa Club, a popular hub of nighttlife in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, West Africa. It was 1989, durinf FESPACO, the Pan-African Cinema Festival. Moustapha’s recording, Wassa, which means “come out and play” in Wolof, was a pop hit, and he suggested I interpret it, through my particular sensibility, and using the pool of material I had been gathering across West and Southern Africa for three years. Moustapha’s music video project provided a vehicle for beginning to investigate the image/sound archive I had collected. The approach to the piece was guided by my study of the work of Paul Klee, painter, whose vision was profoundly altered through his first encounter with North African sensibilitites, and also the scholarship and insight of Teshome Gabriel, Ph.D., who illumantes the aesthetic of North African nomadic peoples.
The second intention of Wassa was as an etude in the development of the three channel installation Dreamkeepper. The Jembe orchestra playing in Dreamkeepper was recorded at the Wassa Club.
Wassa is part of a series of works, and a trajectory of vision, begun in the late 1980′s in analogue small-format video, and which currently finds expression in immersive environments and synthetic worlds.
Collaboration: Moustapha Thiobiano, musician, composer, and owner of the Wassa Club, in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, West Africa.
Jembe: 1989, 3:00
Collaboration: Coulibali Aboubacar, musician, Bobodialaso, Burkina Faso, West Africa.
Design intention: Create an animation, in analog video format, that interprets / riffs on the improvised drum solo and voice of Coulibali Aboubacar. The compositional elements include video and photos from field productions in Burkina Faso and Angola, as well as studio work.
Guides: Paul Klee, painter, whose vision was altered through his first encounter with North African aesthetic. Teshome Gabriel, Ph.D., cinema scholar, the Nomad Aesthetic.
No Crystal Stair: 1977, 13:00
The Trouble I’ve Seen: 1976, 5:00
Beyond the Mountains, More Mountains: 1975, 12:00
Collaboration: Fred Mangones. architect, folklorist, artist; Gunilla Mallory Jones, artist; Louis Massiah, folklorist.
Technology Vectors: source materials include analog video, audio, 35mm and polaroid photo. Mattes created with home-made rotoscope system. Video processing and compositing via chrominance and luminance keys.