DOUBLE YOU (and X, Y, Z)

Videotape from Interactive Videodisc

1981-86, 18:44 min, color, sound

The primary subject of this complex, multi-leveled work is the acquisition of language, while its underlying structure is derived from physics. Through analogy and metaphor, d'Agostino parallels the successive stages of learning language — cries at birth, first words and sentences, songs — with the four elements that are believed to cause all physical interaction in the universe — light, gravity, strong and weak forces. In this ingenious, often playful allegory, visual metaphor is interwoven with linguistic concepts. Birth/Light is a densely-layered recreation of the birth process. Gravity/Words traces a baby's first attempts at making sounds and learning words. Strong Force/Sentences encourages the viewer to re-discover language through a random sentence formulation process. Weak Force/Songs plays with images of a spinning carousel filled with young children, completing the cycle that began with the birth in the first section.

Video/Sound/Editor: Peter d'Agostino. Second Camera: Skip Sweeney. Music: Jon Gibson.

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