9/9/21: Virtual Talks with Video Activists: Steve Beck

A screening/discussion with electronic "polymediast" Steve Beck co-moderated by Jason Nebergall and Steve Seid.

Watch the full recording of the 9/9/21 event.
Steve Beck wearing his Phosphotron invention as of 1979.

On September 9th, in collaboration with the University of Chicago’s Department of Cinema and Media Studies, Media Burn hosted electronic “polymediast” Steve Beck for a screening and discussion of a selection of his electronic art works, including Video Weavings (1975), which was the first digital video synthesizer designed, built, and performed by Steve Beck. His Video Weavings have been displayed on screens ranging from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to Shea Stadium. The event will be co-moderated by Jason Nebergall and Steve Seid.

Steve Beck has been sculpting video and multimedia works with electrons since the pre-digital era in 1967. Beck’s video works have been broadcast on PBS-TV and on international television networks, and are in collections of major art museums worldwide. He holds degrees in electronic engineering and computer science from the University of California, Berkeley, and studied electronic music and composition with composer John Cage at the University of Illinois, Urbana. He was a founding member of the Chicago chapter of EAT (Experiments in Art and Technology) in 1968. Please visit stevebeck.tv to learn more and view his work.

Jason Nebergall is in his sixth year at Northwestern University, writing his dissertation on experimental Chicago television. He has worked with Media Burn on a previous event with Dan Sandin. His research focuses on Chicago-based artists, performers, and technicians working to produce experimental and activist television programming. He has presented his work at the SCREEN conference at the University of Glasgow, the Console-ing Passions conference at Bournemouth University, and SCMS conference in Seattle. He holds a BA in Cinema with a minor in Art History from The University of Iowa and an MA in the Humanities from The University of Chicago.

Steve Seid was a media curator at the Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive for twenty-five years. During that time, he presented almost a thousand public programs, featuring experimental media, forgotten film genres, and a sampling of international cinema. He also helped build the PFA’s collection, particularly video art and personal cinemas from the Bay Area. Notable would be the restoration of Steven Arnold’s Luminous Procuress (1971) and poet ruth weiss’s only film effort, The Brink (1961). Seid has also been involved with several publications, most importantly, Radical Light: Alternative Film & Video in the San Francisco Bay Area, 1945-2000, co-edited with Steve Anker and Kathy Geritz; Ant Farm 1968-1978, co-edited with Constance Lewallen; and his recent solo effort, Media Burn: Ant Farm and the Making of An Image.

This event series is free to attend. Media Burn is a 501(c)3 nonprofit, and we depend on donations to continue our work. Please consider making a donation at mediaburn.org/donate, or by texting MEDIABURN to 44321.



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