Dinca — contemporary art blog

Video Data Bank: Radical Closure Box-Set and London Screening

Image: (Posthume) (Posthumous), Ghassan Salhab, 2007

Chicago, IL, October 27, 2010 – Video Data Bank is pleased to announce the publication of the highly-anticipated DVD box set, Radical Closure.

Curated by Lebanese video artist Akram Zaatari, and originally presented by the Internationale Kurzfilmtage OberhausenRadical Closure features works produced in response to situations of physical or ideological closure resulting from war and territorial conflicts. The program looks at what is known as the Middle East, and how the moving image has functioned throughout its history, charged with division, political tension, and mobilization. This 5-DVD box set has an accompanying monograph with curator’s essay, and features important work by 24 artists including Guy Ben-Ner, Harun Farocki, Mona Hatoum, Walid Raad, and Elia Suleiman. Many of the titles on Radical Closure are being made available to educational audiences for the first time.

VDB is celebrating the launch of the box set with two public screenings – the first of which took place on October 18 at New York’s e-flux storefront space, and an upcoming event on November 6 in London at Whitechapel Gallery‘s Zilkha Auditorium. The special promotional program shown at both venues concentrates on works portraying unsettling situations, narrated with both considerable emotional investment and critical distance, and includes titles by Lisa Steele, Hatice Güleryüz, Köken Ergun, and more.

For a complete list and descriptions of artists and titles included in Radical Closure, please visit the VDB website, www.vdb.orgRadical Closure is available for educational purchase on Multi-Region DVD for $1100 plus shipping, or screening rental (request a quote for rates and terms). To place an order, institutions should contact VDB directly with shipping and payment information. Press copies are available for review.

Akram Zaatari is an artist who lives and works in Beirut. Co-founder of the Arab Image Foundation, his recent work is based on the study of archival photography from the Middle East, a register of social relationships and of photographic practices.

Chicago’s Video Data Bank is home to the world’s most extensive collection of videos by and about artists.  Established at the School of the Art Institute in 1976, VDB is internationally renowned as an essential video art resource.  The VDB collection houses over 2,500 titles that, seen as a whole, describe the development of video as an art form, originating in the late 1960s and continuing through the present. Through an international distribution service, the VDB makes video art available to a wide range of audiences, serving thousands of screening venues every year.


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