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“EX-RENTAL: A Video Art Livestream” 22.10.20

Short works from contemporary video artists + live Q&A with co-programmer Jessie Scott.

Co-produced by Channels Festival


“What becomes of a video store’s videos and DVDs, and the people who rented them, when it closes?” asks Jeff Scheible in Video After Video Stores, while tracking the orphaned rental library of Mondo Kim’s – the renowned New York City video store.

Video shops helped transform cinema from a location, to a state of mind- a set of material as well as cultural settings. Streaming has now utterly removed the material from the equation: cinema can and does exist anywhere. How far though, can you bend cinema before it breaks? And what becomes of all that accumulation of screen vernacular still hanging around our heads, through which we still view the world?

Ex-Rental looks at Australian video artists dealing with cinema. Bending it, breaking it, and occasionally putting it back together. This is anti-cinema cinephilia, parsing the strategies, forms and habits of the ur-medium of the 20th century via performance, narrative, genre, montage, screen-capture, rotoscope and blue screen. 

If cinema is dead: long live the ex-rental.

Co-programmed and hosted by Jessie Scott, co-produced by Channels Festival

Made possible by funding from the Inner West Creative & Cultural Resilience Grant


TITLE: I Still Call It Home

YEAR: 2018

DURATION: 00:07:07

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Cassandra Tytler is an artist working within single-channel video, performance, and video installation. Her work explores contemporary cultural iconography and the idealized signs that exist within it. She is particularly fascinated by the symbolism of popular clichés, and within her work pastiches isolated and fragmented cultural conventions as an exploration of the power relations that are created and get repeated within them. Tytler’s work combines an unsettling, wry humour with a pop sensibility. It is an ongoing examination of the mechanics of video performance, both onscreen and by the hand of the video artist. She lives in Narrm/Melbourne, Australia.

TITLE: Untitled 1-8

YEAR: 2011-2015

DURATION: 0:13:18

ABOUT THE ARTIST:  Tania Smith is a performance artist working across live performance, video and photography. She often works with costume and playfully examines ideas of ‘bre//aking free’- liberation from structures and boundaries, whether societal or personal. She has exhibited widely in Australia and was part of the Asialink touring exhibition ‘Vertigo’, which toured Indonesia, South Korea and Taiwan. In 2014 she completed a Master of Fine Arts at Monash University, receiving a H1 by assessor Lou Hubbard. In 2015 she was part of the Studio Start-Up program at the Abbotsford Convent. She has been a finalist in the Josephine Schubert and Win Ulrick Photography Award, the Sunshine Coast Art Prize, the M Collection award and the Maggie Diaz Photography Prize for Women. She has a child with a rare genetic condition, Prader-willi Syndrome, and she balances her art practice with her advocacy and care for her child.

Untitled 1-8 is shown courtesy of the artist and MAY SPACE Sydney

TITLE: Imperial Reminiscence

YEAR: 2018

DURATION: 0:10:15

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Caroline Garcia is an interdisciplinary artist working across live performance and video through a hybridized aesthetic of cross-cultural dance, ritual practice, and new media. Her work often comprises of performance and video installations that traverse a highly personalized aggregation of distinct systems that encompass live-green screening, botany, robotics, poetry, and virtual reality. 

Caroline’s practice is shaped by alterity. In her work, she centres peripheral bodies by assuming the role of shape shifter – sliding into the gaps between cultures, experiences of otherness, and timeless clichés of exotic femininity. Taking an intersectional approach to contemporary dance, Caroline applies identity politics to interrogate problematic narratives of cultural representation, further complicating them through a lens of cultural piracy. Her practice is concerned with reimagining forgotten choreographies and alternate ways of viewing images of the past that eschew classical myths, paying attention to diasporic privilege and the mimetic capacities of the Filipina archetype.

TITLE: Dating Bot

YEAR: 2017

DURATION: 0:07:48

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Lou Fourie pursues the notion of life as art, focusing on relational activities of the everyday. Artistic investigations include performative interactions through media and technology, experimenting with entanglements that blur the boundaries between self and other, human and non-human, and queering normative ideals perpetuated in popular media and technology.

TITLE: Driving to the Ends of the Earth

YEAR: 2016

DURATION: 0:11:22

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Erin Coates is a Perth-based artist working across drawing, sculpture and film. Erin’s practice focuses on the limits of our bodies and physical interaction with and within given environments. In exploring thresholds of the body she draws from her own background in rock climbing and freediving. Erin’s artwork is informed by her deep interest in the natural world, biology, science fiction and genre film cultures. Recently, her work has centred on the oceanic Gothic in relation to Australia’s unique marine flora and fauna and presents hybrid forms that merge human teeth, hair and organs with various endemic lifeforms. Referencing anthropogenic impacts on these organisms the work also proposes a possible transhuman future. The works are fecund, abject, and at times engaging with a transgressive bodily aesthetic.

SCORE: Stuart James

TITLE: Australian Landscapes

DURATION: 0:18:2

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Eugenia Lim is an Australian artist of Chinese–Singaporean descent who works across video, performance and installation to explore how national identities cut, divide and bond our globalised world. Lim has exhibited, screened or performed at the Tate Modern, LOOP Barcelona, FIVA (Buenos Aires), Recontemporary (Turin), Kassel Dokfest, Museum of Contemporary art (Syd), Dark MOFO, ACCA, Melbourne Festival, Next Wave, ACMI, FACT Liverpool and EXiS (Seoul). She has been artist-in-residence with the Experimental Television Centre (NY), Bundanon Trust, the Robin Boyd Foundation and 4A Beijing Studio. She is a 2018–20 Gertrude Contemporary studio artist and since 2019, is co-director (with Lara Thoms and Mish Grigor) of 26-year-old artistic company APHIDS. Lim co-founded temporal art collective Tape Projects, CHANNELS Festival and co-wrote/hosts Video Becomes Us (ABC iView), an artist-made TV show. She teaches at both RMIT and the Victorian College of the Arts where she is a current Senior Industry Fellow and a Centre of Visual Art (CoVA) Fellow, respectively. Eugenia Lim is represented by STATION, Melbourne and Sydney.

TITLE: The Was

YEAR: 2016

DURATION: 0:13:40

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Soda_Jerk is a two-person art collective who work exclusively with sampled material and pirated cinema to make experimental documentary films. Following their acclaimed political revenge fable TERROR NULLIUS (2018), Soda_Jerk are currently working on a new feature Hello Dankness. Formed in Sydney in 2002, they’ve been based in NYC since 2012.

TITLE: sicksickcitizen

YEAR: 2016

DURATION: 0:08:38

ABOUT THE ARTISTS: Sick Citizen is a collaboration between Naarm based artists Felix ter Hedde and Hannah Hotker. Felix combines video, sound and performance within their practice to explore intersections relating to internet psychedelia, mysticism and cyborg feminism. Hannah utilises sound design to create exploratory and experimental soundscapes.

TITLE: La Perruque

YEAR: 2018

DURATION: 0:04:10

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Laresa Kosloff makes performative videos, short films, audio works and participatory artworks. Her practice examines various representational strategies, each one linked by an interest in the body and its agency within the everyday. Laresa is represented by Sutton Gallery, Melbourne, Australia.