Titles with or about Tony Conrad

In Line

1985, 7:14 min, color, sound

"A trisection of the spectators' power over their own image language: word, trance, and command are installed as valences of the artist’s license, revealed as figures of parental authority.

"How peculiar that people like being an audience because they enjoy their submission to the authority of the program. This ritual of being dominated is a conspiracy with themselves that we enjoy but refuse to acknowledge. 'Oh, no. I don’t like TV because I’m submissive; it’s because it makes me feel good.' The programs are always carefully crafted to be sensitive to people’s self- protectiveness, even if they offer a good scare, or a good cry. Well, if this is all true, what happens when, by chance, you submit to a program that refuses to be polite about your closet masochism? That tells all?

"In the wake of Combat Status Go and in the course of making the trilogy The Poetics of TV (which comprises Ipso Facto, An Immense Majority, and In Line), I discovered that metanarrative devices could be employed ironically—even perniciously. Even 'advanced' viewers might not have a chance to enjoy full independence from the strictures of the work—but they would enjoy the demonstration of their encumbrance by older viewing habits (or one might say the deconstruction of narrative conceits) to the extent that they found themselves trapped by the unraveling devices of these three short tapes." — Tony Conrad