Barbara Sykes on NIGHTWATCH (April 1, 1977)

Video artist Barbara Sykes appears on Gene Siskel's television show Nightwatch, and screens excerpts from her video Circle 9 Sunrise.

00:18Copy video clip URL Gene Siskel introduces Barbara Sykes’ work, explaining her techniques and screening a video produced and recorded live at the second Electronic Visualization Event (EVE 2), called Circle 9 Sunrise

01:10Copy video clip URL A man in a cowboy hat introduces the production: “Digitally done by Tom Defanti and Andrew Browning. Analog by Barbara Sykes. And the audio by Sir Michael Sterling.”

01:44Copy video clip URL An excerpt of Circle 9 Sunrise, an image processing video made up of abstract forms and patterns. A drone-like ambient soundtrack accompanies the images. 

05:04Copy video clip URL Siskel returns with Sykes. 

05:24Copy video clip URL Sykes explains her techniques. “The image was generated by a digital computer, and that was on Tom Defanti’s system, and he did computer graphics with Drew Browning. And I worked on an analog computer and that’s Dan Sandin’s image processor. It’s a video synthesizer and we jammed together. We did a real-time performance in front of an audience.” 

05:55Copy video clip URL Explaining one visual effect: “That was feedback. We took the computer image and put it into the synthesizer. And then took a second camera image and did a scanned conversion off of a second monitor which was playing back the original image and then feeding the image back and creating a loop with the second camera and that went into the synthesizer too.”

06:53Copy video clip URL Another excerpt of Circle 9 Sunrise, including footage of Sykes and her collaborators at the performance adjusting the image. 

08:12Copy video clip URL Siskel and Sykes return. A discussion of what makes video art good or bad: “It’s all a personal thing, your own aesthetic values.”

08:45Copy video clip URL What is groundbreaking in computer art: interaction between digital and analog systems. Sykes discusses the ways in which the two systems work together and what each artist contributes in real-time. 

11:07Copy video clip URL End of interview. 

 

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