The spaceman [videorecording] : a video performance[--footage]

Title
The spaceman [videorecording] : a video performance[--footage] / The Kitchen Center for Video and Music in association with The Byrd Hoffman Foundation, Inc. presents ; by Ralph Hilton and Robert Wilson ; video production by Fifi Corday Productions, New York, Carlota [i.e. Carlotta] Schoolman, Michael Shamberg.
Publication
New York, 1975-1977.

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Vol/DateFormatAccessStatusCall NumberLocation
Disc 1Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 1Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 2Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 2Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 3Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 3Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 4Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 4Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 5Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 5Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 6Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 6Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 7Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 7Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 8Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 8Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 9Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 9Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 10Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 10Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 11Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 11Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 12Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 12Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 13Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 13Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 14Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 14Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 15Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 15Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 16Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 16Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 17Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 17Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 18Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 18Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 19Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 19Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT
Disc 20Moving imageRestricted useCheck with staffNCOX 3068 Disc 20Performing Arts Research Collections - TOFT

Details

Additional Authors
Description
32 videodiscs (DVD) (989 min.) : sd., b&w and col.; 4 3/4 in.
Donor/Sponsor
Gift of the Byrd Hoffman Water Mill Foundation.
Series Statement
Robert Wilson Audio/Visual Collection
Alternative Title
  • AATT
  • R&R video at The Kitchen
  • Spaceman 2
  • V-13
Genre/Form
Personal/independent works.
Note
  • Donor's inventory numbers: SPA 01A, C-P; Schoolman 10-34, 36-42.
  • In an interview (NCOW 303), Wilson recalled working with iron lung patients at Goldwater Hospital in Manhattan (ca. 1967-1968) and thinking that they were like astronauts or spacemen within their own isolated worlds. Inspired by this condition or state of the patients as spacemen, he created a site arrangement of walls "like a library in which we would catalog images as they relate to this idea of the spaceman."
  • Site-specific installation performance work comprising two "corridors" or walls covered in translucent plastic. The work featured six channels of video played on twenty monitors (individual monitors and assembled banks of monitors) and live performances.
  • The installation was divided into three sections of video based on the three traditional methods from painting of "measuring a space": the Portrait, the Still life and the Landscape. The total running time of the work was 90 minutes (three 30-minute sections). Each 30-minute section (Portrait, Still life, and Landscape) was divided into 10-minute pieces separated by "Commercials," which supposedly featured entirely different content. Commercials were played on all monitors simultaneously, whereas during other points in the work, different material was played over different monitors simultaneously.
  • The Still life section featured a table with two monitors on top (one large, one small) and a "green thing" underneath. The Portrait section featured two groups of six monitors with two or three performers sitting on chairs or standing at each end and in the middle. The Landscape section featured a suspended man with goggles and a snorkel and a woman fishing. The live performances included Christopher Knowles typing on a character generator in the Portrait space, Sue Sheehy fishing in the Landscape space, and two or three other performers in white sitting or standing next to the bank of monitors in the Portrait space.
  • Exact content for each monitor could not be confirmed. The content of the recordings comprises short vignettes, some of them acted and some of them improvised spontaneously. Most vignettes appear several times across the recordings. The cataloger was unable to determine whether this sequencing was intentional or just the result of dubbing. There does not seem to be a narrative order or sequence to the vignettes. They sometimes appear in variant iterations in other recordings. Different versions of these vignettes also appear in varying tape/picture quality or in black and white and color; the cataloger was unable to determine whether this was the result of intentional processing, problems of original recording (redoing certain routines with different takes on different cameras?), or simply generational loss from dubbing. Most camera shots are fixed.
  • The recordings are arranged following the donor's original order and titling (of undetermined significance). Recordings labeled with the SPA prefix (for example, SPA 01C) originated on 3/4" video, and recordings labeled with the Schoolman prefix (for example, Schoolman 12) originated on 1/2" open reel video. Research indicates that The Spaceman was shot using two 1/2" open reel video recorders and one 3/4" Sony Portapak recorder.
  • Credits taken from The Kitchen program.
  • The tape labeled SPA 01P has the following additional credits: Afro American Total Theatre ; Manhattan Muses present Spaceman 2 by Robert Wilson and Ralph Hilton. This is the only tape in the series labeled as Spaceman 2.
Access (note)
  • Restricted to qualified researchers.
Credits (note)
  • Production manager, Mayra Levy ; costumes constructed by Robyn Anderson, Deborah Auten, Cheryl Bishop, D'Arcangelo-Mayer, Paris, Ildiko ; lighting by Carol Mullins.
Performer (note)
  • Susan Bradford, Rolf Brand, Farrell Brickhouse, Kit Cation, Ralph Hilton, Julie Hymen, Christopher Knowles, Mayra Levy, Robert Liebowitz, Sue Sheey [Sheehy], Jerry Vitale, Robert Wilson.
Event (note)
  • Videorecorded in New York City between 1975 and 1977. Some footage was probably used in the video performance of The Spaceman at The Kitchen, which took place on January 2-4, 1976, and some was probably incorporated into an unfinished video work for television, The spaceman 2.
Contents
Disc 1. Composite edit (IMAC) 4/14/77 (SPA 01C) (22 min.) -- Disc 2. Master edit C. Time base correction 12/31/76 (SPA 01D) (31 min.) -- Disc 3. Still life A/IA (SPA 01E) (31 min.) -- Disc 4. Still life B/IIA (SPA 01F) (31 min.) -- Disc 5. Still life IIIB (Rods of Light) (SPA 01G) (31 min.) -- Disc 6. Portrait A/IA. Grandma (SPA 01H) (31 min.) -- Disc 7. Portrait B/IA. Bob (SPA 01I) (31 min.) -- Disc 8. Portrait IIIB. Still life A2, B2, C2 (SPA 01J) (31 min.) -- Disc 9. Portrait C/IVB (SPA 01K) (31 min.) -- Disc 10. Landscape Water A/II (SPA 01L) (28 min.) -- Disc 11. Landscape Water C (Pink) (SPA 01O) (30 min.) -- Disc 12. #2 Time corrected. Water Landscape (SPA 01P) (60 min.) -- Disc 13. Landscape Water C (Pink) (Schoolman 12) (30 min.) -- Disc 14. High density edited master. Parts A, B, C (Blue Lucinda landscape) (Schoolman 13) (29 min.) -- Disc 15. Landscape water A/II. Copy #1A. Edited master (Schoolman 14) (30 min.) -- Disc 16. Landscape water B. Master edit. High density (Schoolman 17) (26 min.) -- Disc 17. Landscape water C. Copy #1 from master (Schoolman 18) (30 min.) -- Disc 18. Excerpt (Grandma) (Schoolman 19) (34 min.) -- Disc 19. Still life A2. Copy #1 from master (Schoolman 22) (31 min.) -- Disc 20. Still life B2. Copy #1 from master (Schoolman 23) (31 min.) -- Disc 21. Still life C2. Copy #1 from master (Schoolman 24) (31 min.) -- Disc 22. Staten Island. Spacestation still life 12/75 (Schoolman 25) (34 min.) -- Disc 23. Coney Island. Parachute #1 12/75 (Schoolman 26) (33 min.) -- Disc 24. Phone conversation. Ralph. Boat, conversation (Schoolman 27) (33 min.) -- Disc 25. Hudson River. Rolf reading Asimov (Schoolman 29) (26 min.) -- Disc 26. Bob crawling reshot (Schoolman 30) (34 min.) -- Disc 27. Ralph Hilton lying on the beach. Ralph Hilton spiral (Schoolman 31) (33 min.) -- Disc 28. Commercials (Schoolman 32) (17 min.) -- Disc 29. Words #2 (Schoolman 33) (28 min.) -- Disc 30. Lecture Bob uncle (Schoolman 34) (33 min.) -- Disc 31. Rods of light reflected 11/9/75 (Schoolman 36) (28 min.) -- Disc 32. Portrait A. Grandma Copy #1. Commercials - old man 1/76 (Schoolman 40) (30 min.).
Call Number
NCOX 3068
Title
The spaceman [videorecording] : a video performance[--footage] / The Kitchen Center for Video and Music in association with The Byrd Hoffman Foundation, Inc. presents ; by Ralph Hilton and Robert Wilson ; video production by Fifi Corday Productions, New York, Carlota [i.e. Carlotta] Schoolman, Michael Shamberg.
Imprint
New York, 1975-1977.
Country of Producing Entity
United States
Series
Robert Wilson Audio/Visual Collection
Access
Restricted to qualified researchers.
Event
Videorecorded in New York City between 1975 and 1977. Some footage was probably used in the video performance of The Spaceman at The Kitchen, which took place on January 2-4, 1976, and some was probably incorporated into an unfinished video work for television, The spaceman 2.
Summary
The fifteen vignettes are described hereafter in an arbitrary order, meant only to distinguish them as main units of content. From consultation of performance documentation, the vignettes confirmed as being found on monitors include: 1, 5, 6, 7, 12.
Vignette 1. Portrait. Phone Booth scene: a woman (Ethel?) wrapped in a blanket comes to an isolated phone booth near the ocean (wind is heard). In her first routine, she is distraught and calls someone describing her anxiety of seeing something on the beach. In her second routine, she calls and explains it's all okay; they were "just making a movie." Exterior. There is another actor, a man in suit and tie, who also does the same routine but in a different manner. In this routine, Robert Wilson is heard coaching the man on his lines and attitude. The woman's routine is repeated several times throughout the recordings.
Vignette 2. Bed monologue woman: a woman lying in bed, head and shoulder shot, interior. She relates circuitously an event on a beach. Appears several times but with variations on the story. Interior.
Vignette 3. Old man singing: old man, in what seems to be a bar or other public location, sings and improvises a routine. Behind him is a large projection of a film noir. Interior. In color and b&w.
Vignette 4. Portrait of a man as he is reflected in window looking out to some city lights at night with country music as location sound in background. He is dressed in white shirt vest and kerchief?. He moves very slowly, gradually from side to side or backwards almost out of reflection. In one scene, his arm moves up to his mouth. At one point, Wilson can be heard off-screen saying "count to 75." Interior.
Vignette 5. Portrait. Older woman "Grandma" sitting on chair on top of a table in a loft. Camera at Dutch angle until she pulls on a microphone extension stand, which then brings camera up to vertical position. Room in a loft with a window in the back corner, halfway closed blinds. A light is on under her chair. She is giving a spontaneous monologue. In another version, she moves her mouth but does not appear to be actually speaking. Her voice is heard though, perhaps recorded and played back to the room. At other times, there is audio of a phone off the hook. In a longer version, there is an off-screen prompt from Wilson to talk about "being a child in Mississippi." Interior.
Vignette 6. Portrait. Robert Wilson crawling. Close up on Wilson on hands and knees, dressed in white with dark glasses, frame cropped below elbows and tight just above his head. He moves slowly, not really going anywhere, leaning side to side, never going out of frame entirely. He is looking down or to the side. Background shows white opening or window out of surrounding darkness, either smoke or out-of-focus cars, people passing. This footage was shown on banks of monitors and is probably not performance documentation. Assumed interior.
Vignette 7. Still life. Spaceman(?) or man in body suit, crawling up from inside of a playground jungle gym. Medium static shot. Also, another shot of him looking around sitting on top of jungle gym with waves crashing behind him. Exterior.
Vignette 8. Lecture Bob Uncle. Man sitting by fireplace talking quasi-conspiracy theories. In color and b&w. Interior.
Vignette 9. Full-screen wide shot of water, at various times, possibly color with some processing. One is labeled pink. Most are silent with the exception of a recording titled "Hudson River Rolf reading Asimov" which includes the reading of a text.
Vignette 10. Woman's profile looking left. She has glasses and brown hair cropped at the end of her neck. Some vignettes show her holding this pose in real time with background location audio of "Silent night," and other vignettes show a still frame of her extended for some minutes, silent. Another vignette shows her holding some silver object in her mouth.
Vignette 11. A woman with glasses at a busy (loud) restaurant who discusses "seeing things" like "monsters and green things" and how she might feel after telling somebody this. Very brief, one full vignette and a shorter excerpt on a different recording.
Vignette 12. Still life. Stills of a strawberry, a lemon, a head of lettuce and a head of lettuce halved. On blue background, silent.
Vignette 13. Christopher Knowles performance, including the eyeglasses monologue and another shorter poem. Color.
Vignette 14. "Rods of light" (bulbs or tubes), with ambient location audio. Color.
Vignette 15. Character generator typings from Christopher Knowles ("You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout . . ;" "ABABAB;" etc.).
Credits
Production manager, Mayra Levy ; costumes constructed by Robyn Anderson, Deborah Auten, Cheryl Bishop, D'Arcangelo-Mayer, Paris, Ildiko ; lighting by Carol Mullins.
Cast
Susan Bradford, Rolf Brand, Farrell Brickhouse, Kit Cation, Ralph Hilton, Julie Hymen, Christopher Knowles, Mayra Levy, Robert Liebowitz, Sue Sheey [Sheehy], Jerry Vitale, Robert Wilson.
Added Author
Wilson, Robert, 1941- director.
Wilson, Robert, 1941- performer.
Hilton, Ralph, 1946-1984, director, performer.
Schoolman, Carlotta, production stage manager.
Levy, Mayra, production stage manager, performer.
Auten, Deborah, costume designer.
Bishop, Cheryl, costume designer.
Mullins, Carol, lighting designer.
Bradford, Susan, performer.
Brand, Rolf, performer.
Brickhouse, Farrell, 1949- performer.
Cation, Kathryn, performer.
Hymen, Julie, performer.
Knowles, Christopher, performer.
Liebowitz, Robert, performer.
Sheehy, Sue, performer.
Vitale, Jerry, performer.
Kitchen Center for Video, Music, Dance, Performance, Film, and Literature (New York, N.Y.), producer.
Byrd Hoffman Foundation, producer.
Fifi Corday Productions.
D'Arcangelo-Mayer (Paris, France), costume designer.
Afro-American Total Theatre.
Manhattan Muses.
Added Title
R&R video at The Kitchen
AATT
Spaceman 2
V-13
Gift of the Byrd Hoffman Water Mill Foundation.
Research Call Number
NCOX 3068
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