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Article

Michael Forsyth

Sound can be defined as audible vibrations within a relatively steady medium, and in buildings sound may be air-borne or structure-borne. The science of architectural acoustics is divisible into noise control and room acoustics. The following article is mainly concerned with the latter and the ‘desired’ sound generated within a space, because its design has had a significant impact on architectural form; it concentrates on examples of Western architecture.

For an extended discussion of acoustics see Grove 6.

Different acoustical conditions are preferable for listening to the spoken word as compared with different types of music. The shape, size and construction of halls and theatres—and to some extent other building types, including churches—developed historically in response to acoustical requirements. Room-acoustic design, however, is a relatively recent subject of study. Until the 20th century this relationship between acoustical requirements and the building form resulted from trial and error, involving the architect’s intuition and awareness of precedent rather than scientific knowledge. Acoustically inadequate halls were usually demolished within about 50 years, so that most surviving older halls are probably among the best that were built....

Article

American, 20th – 21st century, female.

Active in New York and Berlin.

Born 1949, in Columbus (Ohio).

Installation artist, sculptor, mixed media, video artist. Multimedia.

Judith Barry studied finance, architecture and art at the University of Florida, graduating in 1972. She received an MA in Communication Arts from New York Institute of Technology in ...

Article

Morgan Falconer

(b Columbus, OH, 1949).

American installation artist and video artist. She graduated from the University of Florida in 1972, having studied finance, architecture and art; in 1986 she received an MA in Communication Arts from New York Institute of Technology. Barry’s work was consistently guided by an interest in the ways in which lived social relations are translated into built form in architecture and public space. Casual Shopper (1980–81; see 1988 exh. cat., p. 14) is typical of her early video pieces in examining these issues through a narrative about a couple in a Californian shopping mall; in it, Barry shows how the realms of private fantasy blend into the fantastical confections of the mall’s architecture. The slide and film installation In the Shadow of the City...Vamp r y... (1982–5) points to her related interests in subject formation, states of mind, and the way in which power is exercised through the gaze: bringing together a series of domestic and urban spaces, the images show a number of figures looking out of a window and a woman watching a man sleep. ...

Article

British, 20th century, male.

Born 1941, in Sheffield.

Sculptor, assemblage artist. Multimedia, artists’ books.

Conceptual Art.

Victor Burgin attended the Royal Academy of Art in London from 1962 to 1965 and Yale School of Art and Architecture from 1965 to 1967. He taught for a number of years at the Film and Photography School of Central London Polytechnic (now the University of Westminster). After spending 13 years in the USA, he returned to London and taught at Goldsmiths College. In addition to his work as an artist, he has also published several books on the theory of art. He is acknowledged as one of the driving forces behind the British photography school founded on semiology and psychoanalysis (rather than on sociology or the history of ideas)....

Article

Milan Ivelić

(b Santiago, May 11, 1940).

Chilean painter, printmaker and video artist. He studied architecture at the Universidad Católica de Chile in Santiago and printmaking at Taller 99, a workshop in Santiago run by Nemesio Antúnez, where he explored new technical methods for representing machine imagery and energy. In 1962 he travelled to Spain and then to Paris, where he studied at Stanley William Hayter’s Atelier 17.

In the mid-1960s Downey settled in the USA, where he became interested in and made contact with the pioneers of video art, which became his primary medium. Proposing to work directly with energy rather than simply representing it, he presented his first audio-visual installation in 1966, conveying light, sound and energy by means of closed-circuit television. Conceiving of the artist as a cultural communicator and keen to appropriate to his own ends methods of image reproduction derived from advanced technology, he created a series entitled Video Transamérica, which he began in ...

Article

Donna Stein

(b New York, May 29, 1940; d New York, Nov 21, 1998).

American multimedia artist, video artist, teacher and writer. She studied painting at Cornell University (BA 1961) and New York University (MA 1967). She married architect James Ingo Freed in 1967. By the late 1960s she possessed a Portapak, one of the earliest Sony portable video recorders, and was among the first generation of artists to create and define video art. At first, she used video to produce a series of artist portraits, interviewing James Rosenquist, Lee Krasner, Adolph Gottlieb, Robert Morris, Roy Lichtenstein, and Joyce Kozloff, among others. Later she investigated personal, social and political issues relating to gender and sexuality. In 1972, her work was featured in the groundbreaking exhibition Circuit: A Video Invitational curated by David Ross at the Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse, NY.

Her best-known videotape, Art Herstory (22 minutes long and in color), was made in 1974 while she was an artist-in-residence at the Television Lab at the media company WNET. Brilliantly witty and feminist, Freed inserted herself into famous paintings from the 12th to the 20th century by artists such as Raphael, Chardin, Ingres, Manet and van Gogh. She critiqued male-dominated Western art history by portraying a contemporary woman at odds with her depiction in the past....

Article

Donna Stein

(b Essen, June 23, 1930; d New York, Dec 15, 2005).

American architect, educator and critic of German birth. He married writer, multimedia and video artist Hermine Freed in 1967. In 1939 Freed and his 4-year-old sister escaped Nazi Germany via France and Switzerland with an American uncle. In Chicago he was placed in the care of another uncle until his parents immigrated. Freed attended classes at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, decided to become an architect and enrolled at the Illinois Institute of Technology (BArch 1953). There he learned the tectonics of architecture and was influenced by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.

After one year working in New York with Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson on the Seagram Building, I(eoh) M(ing) Pei hired him in 1956. Freed’s earliest projects for the Pei office were award-winning high-rise residential and office buildings (Kips Bay Plaza housing complex, 1963; University Plaza towers, 1967; 88 Pine Street, 1973...

Article

John R. Neeson

Installation art is a hybrid of visual art practices including photography, film, video, digital imagery, sound, light, performance, happenings, sculpture, architecture, and painted and drawn surfaces. An installation is essentially site specific, three-dimensional, and completed by the interaction of the observer/participant in real time and space. The point of contention with any definition concerns the site specificity, ephemerality, and consequently ‘collectability’ of the work itself. One view has it that the category installation is presupposed on the transitory and impermanent, the second that an installation can be collected and re-exhibited as a conventional work of art.

In either case installation had its genesis in the environments and happenings devised by artists in the 1950s in New York and Europe (Nouveau Réalisme in France, Arte Povera in Italy). These in turn had antecedents in the architectural/sculptural inventions such as the various Proun rooms of El Lissitzky and the Merzbau of Kurt Schwitters...

Article

Julia Robinson

(b Monaco, Nov 13, 1927; d Berkleley Heights, NJ, Jan 11, 2004).

Swedish–American engineer. Klüver was known for his important collaborations with artists at the dawn of media art. Having grown up in Sweden, he came to the USA in 1954, and pursued a PhD in electrical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. After relocating to the East Coast, he worked as a staff scientist at Bell Telephone Laboratories (1958–68). In 1960, Klüver’s compatriot, the renowned museum director H. K. G. Pontus Húlten, introduced him to the artist Jean Tinguely, to help the latter with his landmark, self-destroying, kinetic sculpture, Homage to New York (a 27-minute event staged in the Garden of New York’s Museum of Modern Art). This led to numerous collaborations, initiated by Klüver, in which he (and other engineers) would work with artists, dancers, and composers (e.g. Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Whitman (b 1935), Andy Warhol, Nam June Paik, Yvonne Rainer, and John Cage), culminating in ...

Article

Belgian, 20th century, female.

Born 1945, in Antwerp.

Painter, sculptor, installation artist, video artist. Cartoons for tapestries, multimedia.

Before entering La Cambre, the École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture et des Arts Visuels, Brussels, Lafontaine studied law.

Influenced by American 'hard-edge' abstract painting, she started by painting monochromes, before moving on to sculpture. She uses textiles as well as metal to make her works. Alongside her sculptural work, she also makes videos to illustrate her intentions with regard to the body and its visual representation. Her works include: ...

Article

(b Antwerp, Nov 17, 1945).

Belgian sculptor, video artist and installation artist. She studied at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture et des Arts Visuels in Brussels (1975–8). Lafontaine first became known for her large, imposing, monochromatic woven-textile sculptures (e.g. Black Monochrome, cotton, 2.0×2.5 m, 1976; Ghent, Mus. Hedendaag. Kst). She was influenced by the work of such artists as Robert Ryman and Brice Marden and their ideas about the material nature of both colour and support. In 1979 she made her first video work, The Pile-driver, for an exhibition at the International Cultural Centre in Antwerp. As with her woven sculptures, the theme of repetition was central to this and subsequent videos. Repetition of the image and the slowing down of the speed of the film disrupted any narrative and also set up a rhythm that underlined its sensuous and material nature. Lafontaine’s decision to work with video installations enabled her to develop an interest in the closely related phenomena of aggression and desire: ...

Article

American, 20th century, male.

Born 1941, in Long Beach (California).

Sculptor, installation artist. Multimedia.

Antiform.

Le Va trained as an architect and mathematician. Even though he did not feature in the exhibition Antiform organised in 1968 by Robert Morris, he is one of those sculptors, with Eva Hesse, Bruce Nauman, Morris and others, who have been grouped under the title of Post-Minimalist. ...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 1943, in Guingamp; died 1999.

Painter, draughtsman, installation artist, mixed media. Multimedia.

Gilles Mahé was involved in the late 1960s in the creation of the review Architecture Creation ( Créer architecture) before contributing to Marie-Claire Home ( Maison de Marie-Claire...

Article

German, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1953.

Performance artist, video artist, draughtsman. Multimedia.

Marcel Odenbach studied architecture and history of art. Since 1976, he has produced performances and video installations at numerous galleries in Hamburg, Wiesbaden, Bonn, Cologne, Amsterdam, Berlin, Antwerp, Munich, Basel, São Paulo, Los Angeles and Boston....

Article

Italian, 20th century, male.

Active in Norway from 1939.

Born 1901, in Macerata; died 1981, in Macerata.

Painter (mixed media), collage artist, photomontage artist, photographer, architect. Multimedia.

Pannaggi studied architecture in Rome and Florence, and joined the Futurist Movement in 1918. In 1920 he moved to Rome, where he met up with Balla, Prampolini and Bragaglia. Together with Paladini, he signed the ...

Article

Marita Sturken

Culture of images and visuality that creates meaning in our world today. This includes media forms such as photography, film, television, and digital media; art media such as painting, drawing, prints, and installations; architecture and design; comic books and graphic novels; fashion design, and other visual forms including the look of urban life itself. It also encompasses such social realms as art, news, popular culture, advertising and consumerism, politics, law, religion, and science and medicine. The term visual culture also refers to the interdisciplinary academic field of study that aims to study and understand the role that images and visuality play in our society; how images, gazes, and looks make meaning socially, culturally, and politically; how images are integrated with other media; and how visuality shapes power, meaning, and identity in contemporary global culture.

The emergence of the concept of visual culture as a means to think about the role of images in culture and as an academic field of study is a relatively recent phenomenon, emerging in the late 1980s and becoming established by the late 1990s. There were numerous factors that contributed to the idea that images should be understood and analysed across social arenas rather than as separate categories, including the impact of digital media on the circulation of images across social realms, the modern use of images from other social arenas (such as news and advertising) in art, and the cross-referencing of cultural forms displayed in popular culture and art. It was also influenced by the increasingly visible role played by images in political conflict and a general trend toward interdisciplinarity in academia....

Article

[Latv. Nebijušu Sajūtu Restaurēšanas Darbnīca; NSRD]. Latvian association of artists, architects and designers, active from September 1982 until 1989. It introduced video and computer art, new music and hybridized art genres to a conservative public in Latvia towards the end of the Soviet period. Its very name implied preconditions of stricture and privation, and its multidisciplinary methods served to expand critical discourse when Latvian cultural identity and collective political consciousness were undergoing a symbiotic revival, with the restoration of independence as a goal. NSRD founders Juris Boiko (b 1954) and Hardijs Lediņš (b 1955), both self-taught artists, organized Actions that some critics considered to be subtle acts of political dissent. Their Walk to Bolderāja, an annual pilgrimage begun in 1982 to an off-limits Soviet submarine base (representing thwarted access to the West), took place along railroad tracks that recalled the mass deportations of Balts to Siberia during the 1940s, to which Boiko’s parents fell victim. Workshop members included ...