Titles with or about Woody Vasulka

The Commission

1983, 44:55 min, color, sound

Applying his electronic imaging codes to narrative in The Commission, Vasulka develops a metaphorical image language to envision an epic electronic opera. The text, which is based on the relationship of violinist Niccolo Paganini (played by video artist Ernest Gusella) and composer Hector Berlioz (composer/performer Robert Ashley), confronts myths of Romanticism, history and art-making. Constructing a fantastic video theater, Vasulka stages a narrative of transformation, an intricately crafted blend of figuration and abstraction, in which imaging techniques serve as expressive visual syntax. Specific video effects are assigned interpretive meaning; reframed images proliferate within images in re-compositions that propel the narrative progression. The Commission is a pivotal work in the articulation of narrative strategies through an electronic image language.

Camera: Steina. With: Robert Ashley, Ernest Gusella, Cosimo Corsano, Ben Harris, Andrea Harris, David Ossman. Set Design: Bradford Smith. Editor: Peter Kirby. Audio Mix: Baird Banner. Vocoder: Harald Bode. Scan Processor: Rutt/Etra. Digital Articulator: Jeffrey Schier.