|Born||citation needed]September 17, 1945[|
|Known for||Video art|
Korot is a pioneer of video art, and of multiple channel work in particular. By applying specific structures inherent to textile loom programming to the programming of multiple video channels, she brought the ancient and modern worlds of technology into conversation. This extended to a body of work on handwoven canvas in an original language based on the grid structure of woven cloth, and to a series of paintings on canvas based on this language. More recently she has created drawings which combine ink, pencil, and digitized threads, as well as large scale “tapestries” where threads are printed on paper and woven.
Beryl Korot has pioneered the field of video art since the early 1970s, multiple channel work in particular. She was co-editor of Radical Software (1970), the first publication to discuss the possibilities of the new video medium, and Video Art (Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, 1976) with Ira Schneider. By applying specific structures inherent to loom programming to the programming of multiple channels of video, she brought the ancient and modern worlds of technology into conversation. This extended to a body of work on handwoven canvas in an original language based on the grid structure of woven cloth and to a series of paintings on canvas based on this language. More recently, she has created drawings which combine ink, pencil, and digitized threads, as well as large scale tapestries where threads are printed on paper, cut, and woven.
Dachau 1974 and Text and Commentary
Her first multiple channel works (Dachau 1974 and Text and Commentary) were seen at such diverse venues as The Kitchen (1975), Leo Castelli Gallery (1977), Documenta 6 (1977), and the Whitney Museum (1980 and 2002), Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum (2010), Tate Modern (2013), Museum of Modern Art (2017–18), ZKM Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe (2018), amongst others. Dachau 1974 is a four-channel video work, consisting of footage taken in 1974 at the former concentration camp in Dachau, Germany. The recordings focus on the symmetry of the architecture and the present ambiance of the space. Taking inspiration from the technology of the loom, Korot combined her many separate elements (in this case video footage) to develop a work in which paired channels (1 and 3; 2 and 4) conceived as threads bind the non-verbal narrative work as it proceeds in time.
Text and Commentary consists of five video channels on five monitors that Korot recorded from a variety of perspectives as she wove. The five videos depicting the artist working at a loom appear directly across from the resulting tapestries, which are suspended from the ceiling. The viewer experiences the work while seated on a bench between the woven text of the textiles and the video commentary. The installation includes Korot's drawings and pictographic scores, which are the basis for both the textile production and video editing. The work explores the non-decorative meaning and numerical basis of abstract patterns, with Korot understanding the loom and its use of punch cards, to be an early form of communication technology. Traditionally, both weaving and computing have been understood as women's professions, but Korot examines both from a feminist perspective, moving beyond associations with both domesticity and femininity to place textile art within a canon of fine art. The installation was acquired by the Museum of Modern Art.
Dachau 1974 is in the Kramlich Collection as well as the collection of the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Foundation. Her painted text-based handwoven canvases in an original language were exhibited in 1986 at the John Weber Gallery and in the Carnegie Museum of Art's 1991 exhibition Points of Departure: Origins in Video, in 2018 at bitforms gallery, and in 2023 in at LACMA's exhibition Coded: Art Enters the Computer Age, 1952-82, amongst others.
Video Collaborations with Steve Reich
Two video/music collaborations with Steve Reich (The Cave, 1993, and Three Tales, 2002) brought video installation art into a theatrical context and have been performed worldwide since 1993 to the present (2023). Apart from performances, the works have been installed at venues such as the Whitney Museum, the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, the Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, and ZKM.
Korot and Reich both participated in a collaborative interview with writer Jonathan Cott. The article was titled "Modern Folk Tales and Ancient Stories: a Conversation with Beryl Korot and Steve Reich".
Since 2003, she has been creating a new body of video and print work which was seen at Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum for the first time, in Beryl Korot: Text/Weave/Line, Video 1977-2010, and subsequently at Dartmouth College in Fall 2011, and at bitforms gallery in Spring 2012, among others.
Korot also authored a piece that explained the development of her many art and video installations and the thoughts behind them, entitled "Language as Still Life: From Video to Painting."
Awards and Recognition
- Invision, Lost Lascaux Bull, Dishes, Berlin Bees, 20 mins., 1973/4.
- Dachau 1974, 4 channel video installation work, 23 mins., 1974/75.
- Text and Commentary, 5 channel video installation work with 5 weavings, pictographic notations, 5 drawings, 33 mins., 1976/77.
- The Cave, a video opera in 3 Acts, music by Steve Reich, 120 mins., (1993).
- Sarai, Abram’s Wife, 3 video screen, 3 channel work, 1990.
- Departure from Bikini, 2 minutes, silent, (1991)
- Three Tales, a video opera, music by Steve Reich, 64 mins., 2002.
- Hindenburg, music by Steve Reich, 4 mins., 1997.
- Yellow Water Taxi, 2 mins., 2003.
- Vermont Landscape, 4 mins., 2004.
- Pond Life, 5 mins., 2005.
- Babel: the 7 minute scroll, 7 minutes, 2006
- Florence, 10+1⁄2 minutes, 2008.
- Etty, 12 minutes, 2009/10.
- Weaver's Notation - Variations 1 and 2, digital embroideries, 2012.
- "Beryl Korot. Text and Commentary 1976-77". Museum of Modern Art, Collection. 2015. Retrieved 2023-04-19.
- "Video Art: An Anthology: 9780151936328 - AbeBooks". www.abebooks.com. Retrieved 2023-04-19.
- gallery, bitforms. "Beryl Korot, A Coded Language". bitforms gallery. Retrieved 2023-04-19.
- gallery, bitforms. "Beryl Korot, Rethinking Threads". bitforms gallery. Retrieved 2023-04-19.
- Boykoff Baron, Joan; Baron, Reuben M. (2 May 2012). "Palimpsests of Art and Mind: Three Video Installations by Beryl Korot". artcritical.com. Artcritical.
- Schneider, Ira; Korot, Beryl (1976). Video art : an anthology (1st ed.). New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. ISBN 978-0151936328. OCLC 2289764.
- Korot, Beryl (2002). "Text and Commentary (1976)". PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art. 24 (2): 12–13 – via Project MUSE.
- Eager, Elizabeth (2015). "Fiber: Sculpture 1960–Present". The Journal of Modern Craft. 8 (2): 251–258. doi:10.1080/17496772.2015.1057409. S2CID 218835166.
- "Beryl Korot's Text and Commentary acquired by the Museum of Modern Art". artagenda. Retrieved 4 February 2016.
- "ARTISTS". Kramlich Collection. Retrieved 2023-04-19.
- "Digital & Media Art | Thoma Foundation". thomafoundation.org. Retrieved 2023-04-19.
- Cott, Jonathan. "Modern Folk Tales and Ancient Stories: a Conversation with Beryl Korot and Steve Reich".
- Korot, Beryl (October 1988). "Language as Still Life: From Video to Painting". The MIT Press. 21: 367-370.
- "Past Award Winners - Supporting women artists over 45". Archived from the original on 2011-11-03. Retrieved 2012-07-19.
- "Beryl Korot | Jewish Women's Archive".
- Evelin Stermitz (June 2010). "Text/Weave/Line—Video: An Interview with Beryl Korot". rhizome.org. Rhizome. Retrieved 4 February 2016.
- ""Florence" (2008) by Beryl Korot". vimeo. 2012-03-07. Retrieved 4 February 2016.
- "Beryl Korot". jwa.org. Jewish Women's Archive. Retrieved 4 February 2016.