Perceived time: Boredom and temporality in experimental film and video (1965–1975)
This dissertation examines a paradigm shift toward the phenomenology of perception in the visual arts in the U.S. from the early to mid-1960s to the mid-1970s; it situates that decisive turn to embodiment in closer proximity to the experimental moving image of the same period. It details the phenomenological turn by breaking it down to a set of three overlapping and intimately related developments: (1) the radical expansion of the boundaries of the autonomous artistic text, (2) the changing model of the spectator from one of removed contemplation to that of embodied participation, (3) the decentering of the artist, author, or cultural producer as the generative origin of the work. By investigating these concurrent developments more concretely, the dissertation then works through a specific aesthetic problem of the period. Part I is primarily concerned with temporality and duration as a textual phenomenon, Part II with boredom as a spectatorial phenomenon, Part III with pedagogy as strategically decentered subject position assumed by the artist. Threaded through these three interrelated arguments, the dissertation maintains that a proper understanding of the phenomenological turn in art forms must not marginalize the appearance of film and video in the museum and gallery context as a mere symptom of a broad paradigm shift, but rather consider how the moving image shapes and defines the very epistemology of the new paradigm. It will demonstrate the centrality of the moving image through close, comparative readings of American Avant-garde cinema, video art, and artists' films produced between 1965 and 1975.
0377: Art history