D a v i d H a l l
The five 'gallery' pages show a small selection of work from the last forty years. Most of the quotes are extracted from texts listed in the bibliography page.
ecstaseeTV, contexTV and withouTV in TV Interruptions 93
Six works commissioned by MTV Networks and produced by Annalogue were
transmitted repeatedly throughout 1994 between scheduled programmes
'Conceived in the spirit of the 1971 pieces, TV Interruptions 93 were shot or post-produced using advanced colour video technology, electronic effects and a refinement gained over Hall's 25 years work in time-based media. Taken together, they constitute a potted summary of Hall's preoccupations in video and television, and perhaps of the progression of video art as a 'genre'...' Mick Hartney, InT/Ventions.., Diverse Practices: A Critical Reader on British Video Art 1996.
A Situation Envisaged: The Rite II (Cultural Eclipse), video installation 1988-1990
The third installation in the Situation Envisaged series was first shown at Video Positive '89, Tate Gallery, Liverpool 1989 and later at Signs of the Times, Museum of Modern Art, Oxford 1990 and Signes des Temps, Centre d'Art Contemporain, La Ferme du Buisson, Paris 1993/94
15 monitors are built as a single block close to a wall. All but one face the wall and are not seen. TV broadcasts reflecting on the wall form an aurora of changing light. In the centre, on the only screen to be seen, is a 30 line image of the moon shot on a 'camera'/scanner identical to that used by J L Baird in the 1920s. The sound (by David Cunningham) is derived from multiple broadcast channels, and composed as a musical score.
'It is mysterious rather than spectacular; an ominous, authoritarian presence.. challenged only by the single picture of the moon panning silently across the sky at the centre of its shadow. Nature emerges from the eclipse of technology to deny its physicality. The 'aura'.. is here given physical manifestation through a construction of democratic mass media [and it] has another meaning as a psychic identity.. By placing the moon, ruler of the irrational and the psychic, in the central position around which the technological aura revolves, not only the authority of broadcast television but also the perception of the physical nature of the sculpture itself is called into question...' Chrissie Iles, Signs and Interpretations, Signs of the Times cat., Museum of Modern Art, Oxford 1990.
'If meaningless is the quality of TV, not of [this] work, then the work's reproduction of meaninglessness is itself an act of signification, one with a genuine referent in the shape of the broadcasts which it replays. Meanwhile, if the monitors don't provide us with meanings, we will provide them ourselves: the aurora of light as smoke, as solar eclipse, as the specific palette of the electronic painter; the monitors as the black pillar of Kubrick's 2001, as a prison in which we keep our images, as the night sky against which the moon shines...' Sean Cubitt, Videography: Video Media in Art and Culture, Macmillan 1993.
'In formal terms, A Situation Envisaged is also striking in its prescient re-interpretation of both the Minimalist sculpture of the 1960s, of which Hall was a part, and the post-Minimalist artistic hybridity of the 1970s, which he helped to create.. It was only towards the end of the 1990s that the power of this period became widely acknowledged in retrospect, as the eighties were left behind.. Revisited in the year 2001, Hall's video sculpture, made during a theatrical, metaphorical period in the history of video installation, stands out as a strongly conceptual work...' Chrissie Iles, A Situation Revisited - David Hall: A Situation Envisaged: The Rite II (Cultural Eclipse), Factor 1989, Foundation for Art and Creative Technology, Liverpool, 2001.
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