Experimental cinema has flourished in the United States in the past twenty years, and Ed Halter’s book will provide a critical history of the era. A new generation of do-it-yourself venues, dubbed micro-cinemas, sprang up across the country, often in cities that had never before hosted a significant experimental scene, including Albuquerque, Portland, Houston, and Shreveport. Technological changes—from nonlinear editing to desktop editing to digital video—dissolved the boundaries between film and video making. This book will convey the social and conceptual environment and the legacies of avant-garde film and early video art, the redefinition of the alternative art space, and the role of the artist within a market dominated society. His book will include chapters on appropriation (Seth Price and Paul Chan), revised documentary (Walid Raad and William E. Jones), and net art and new media art (Cory Arcangel and Paper Rad).
Ed Halter has written on contemporary experimental cinema for over a decade for such publications as Artforum, the Village Voice, and Rhizome. As a curator for numerous venues, including the New York Underground Film Festival, he has worked directly within the world of experimental cinema, closely watching artists’ work evolve, seeing trends and patterns emerge over time, and actively sustaining this scene. He is presently involved in Light Industry, a venue in Brooklyn devoted to film and electronic art, which has been featured in Modern Painters, Art Review, and Artforum.