Beryl 1971
Beryl Korot                                                                                                                                                                                       1971

       An early video-art pioneer and an internationally exhibited artist, Beryl Korot was born in 1945 in New York, where she continues to live and work. An early video-art pioneer and an internationally exhibited artist, her multiple-channel (and multiple-monitor) video installation works explored the relationship between programming tools as diverse as the technology of the loom and multiple-channel video. She has commented: "Just as the spinning and gathering of wool serve as the raw material for a weave, so the artist working with video selects images to serve as the basic substance of the work." For most of the 1980s, Korot concentrated on a series of paintings that were based on a language she created that was an analogue to the Latin alphabet. Drawing on her earlier interest in weaving and video as related technologies, she made most of these paintings on hand-woven and traditional linen canvas. More recently, she has collaborated with her husband, the composer Steve Reich, on "Three Tales," a documentary digital video opera in three acts and a prologue. It began in 1998 with "Act 1 - Hindenburg." While the Prologue contains biblical text about human creation, Act 1 begins with documentary footage of Paul von Hindenburg, last president of the Weimar Republic (who made Hitler chancellor in 1933), and ends with footage of the Hindenburg zeppelin and its explosion at Lakehurst, New Jersey, in 1937. "Act 2 - Bikini," is based on footage, photographs, and text from the atom bomb test on Bikini Island and the subsequent removal of the Bikini people. "Act 3 - Dolly," explores the issues revolving around the first cloning of a sheep in Scotland, in 1997. Together, the three individual acts form a progressive investigation of the way technology creates and frames our experience. In the context of Korot's body of work, which began with her early video tapestries, "Three Tales" extends and deepens her interest in both technology as a material in which to make work—video, weaving—and as a relevant exploration of history in which to base her work. She lives in Vermont and New York.

Art 21 #103 Beryl Korot: "Radical Software" 1970-74

     Beryl Korot describes the impetus behind the innovative 1970s publication Radical Software, elucidating the history of video in art and the impact of mass media on society. Emerging from an independent video community that included media visionaries such as Marshall McLuhan and groups such as Televisionaries, Videofreex, People's Video Theater, and Global Village, the first issue of Radical Software debuted in Spring of 1970 as a publication by the Raindance Corporation. Beryl Korot and Phyllis Segura (Gershuny) acted as Editors, while Michael Shamburg served as Publisher with Ira Schneider as co-Originator. Early contributors included Nam June Paik, Buckminster Fuller, Ant Farm, Frank Gillette, and Paul Ryan, among others. After eleven issues, Radical Software ceased publication in the Spring of 1974 and is now an invaluable time capsule of an era. This video is published on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the first issue.