Video Art

I first made video art in the MFA program at at Eastern Michigan University from 1973-1975. Using a Sony port-a-pac I made black and white videos using myself in autobiographical "stories". After graduation and the birth of my daughter, Dana, I continued to work independently making solo video art works that became part of the early video art of the 70's.
One of the best is "Milk" (1976 8:00 b/w) Description: While expressing my own breast milk into a glass I reflected on society’s attitudes toward breast-feeding in public and my husband’s reaction to the milk in his coffee.  This tape was censored from many exhibitions at the time following public reaction - in particular death threats from patrons at The Detroit Institute of Arts exhibition "New Video and Performance Art in Detroit" in 1978.   

Six video art tapes in collaboration with Jay Yager (artist, sculptor and filmmaker) were archived at The New Museum in 2013 as part of the XFR STN Video archive Project. Here are the links and descriptions.

https://archive.org/details/XFR_2013-09-01_1A_03 "No Pain No Gain"
https://archive.org/details/XFR_2013-09-01_1A_06 "Corporate Vise"
https://archive.org/details/XFR_2013-09-01_1A_04 "Automatic Shut Off"
https://archive.org/details/XFR_2013-09-01_1A_08 "No Fault"
https://archive.org/details/XFR_2013-09-01_1A_12 "Cross Talk"
https://archive.org/details/XFR_2013-09-05_1C_04 "Tools & Lingerie"


"No Pain No Gain"1984 14:05

Diane Spodarek returns to her childhood summer home where, surrounded by family and friends, she talks about bodybuilding and life. Through twelve intimate "journal entries" she reflects on discipline, confidence, loneliness, sex, art, competition, men, motherhood, marriage, health, rape, and fishing.
Created on a reel to reel video recorded in Belle River, Ontario. This tape was our first collaborative work.
Written & Performed by Diane Spodarek. Directed by Jay Yager.

"Corporate Vise" 1985 3:52

This split-screen metaphor is a glimpse at the pressures that exist at the bottom of the corporate pyramid.
Written & Performed by Diane Spodarek. Directed by Jay Yager.

"Automatic Shut Off" 1985 8:40

A sardonically humorous view of the intimate relationships in the life of a lonely, single, working mother. Distinctions between biography and fictional narrative are deliberately blurred.
Written & Performed by Diane Spodarek. Directed by Jay Yager.

"NO FAULT" 03 min. 11 sec. 1986: 3:0
In the aftermath of a lovers' quarrel that leaves both parties physically and emotionally injured, a couple struggles with the question of blame, each trying to see the situation from the other's viewpoint. Created in the Yager Spider Shack on Sony 3650 AV half-inch reel to reel editing deck. Two cameras with switcher. One take.
Written by Diane Spodarek. Directed by Jay Yager. Performers: Diane Spodarek and Ian Prior

"CROSSTALK" 11 min. 28 sec. 1987: 11:20
Each sex contains the other. This tape raises questions of gender identity by criss-crossing the expected cultural clich├ęs of male and female behavior, language and dress. b/w. U-matic. Ypsilanti, MI
Written by Diane Spodarek. Directed by Jay Yager. Performers: Diane Spodarek and Ian Prior

"Tools & Lingerie" 1987. 13:47
Winner Lawrence Kasden Award at the Ann Arbor Video Festival

A video collage spinning off tools and lingerie, those icons of male and female sexuality, to take a humorous look at the dreams and desires, dreads and disappointments accompanying some relatively mundane events common to us all but usually cloaked in taboo. (Produced with support from the Michigan Council for the Arts.)


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