Video Vortex #9
Re:assemblies of Video
Video Vortex is an international conference addressing online video. The ninth edition took place from 28 February to 2 March 2013 at Leuphana University of Lüneburg with over 50 invited international participants. The event was organized by the Moving Image Lab and the Post-Media Lab.
Networked video has entered a new phase and become part of major configurations. The days of pioneers and amateurs seem to be over, as do the old worlds of professional broadcasting networks: Digital technologies have professionalized production, and do-it-yourself skills have established new styles and formats. Tubes, channels and domains for mobile video are part of our everyday digital life. These tectonic shifts – from amateur and professional to an assemblage of media creators, from spectators to participants, and from a single viewpoint to parallax perspectives – have given rise to effects of a geographical and generational scope yet to be determined. The ninth edition of Video Vortex, organzied by the Moving Image Lab and the Post-Media Lab, proposes that now is a time to re-engage with a structural and contextual analysis of online video culture.
Two keynotes extended the discursive field of Video Vortex #9: Beth Coleman re-engaged local affairs with visions of networked activism, and Nishant Shah unpacked video at the digital turn as object, as process, and as a symptom of the transnational flow of ideology, ideas and infrastructure, especially in emerging information societies in the uneven landscape of globalization.
Video Vortex #9 also featured a number of performative lectures and thematic workshops dealing with video realities. We followed up on the long tails of rebellion with Mosireen Collective in Cairo and Margarita Tsomou in Athens. Boris Traue and Achim Kredelbach, aka Jo Cognito, discussed YouTube’s recent forays into televisual terrain and its delegation of organizing power to commercial “networks” and media agencies. Boaz Levin looked at the way media gravitates towards im-mediating events, and Miya Yoshida critically questioned familiar terminologies from “amateur” and “user” to “prosumer” and “citizen reporter.”
In the run-up to the actual Video Vortex event, international video correspondents have been investigating phenomenologies of video online. After 10 joyful years of global ubiquity, the conference engageed with reinventions of the local under conditions of digital culture. A collaboration with the local video activist collective Graswurzel.tv, whose activities are linked with antinuclear protests in Wendland (near Lüneburg), explored mobile video in (alternative) news journalism. Artist Stephanie Hough joined with local participants to oppose tracking and other incursions into our screen lives by turning a public square into a stage for a mass lip-sync.
The future of film as it fuses with video in the digital realm, and the reconfiguration of its aesthetics, interfaces, production and distribution, were discussed with Thomas Østbye and Edwin, the directors behind the participatory film project 17,000 Islands, and explored by Seth Keen in the domain of interactive documentary on the web. Alejo Duque and Robert Ochshorn analyzed the technological appearances and travesties of video, the soft power of codecs and compression in the information complex, and how to “interface”.
On the conference website, a hybrid video reader is documenting the 9th edition of Video Vortex:
with details about all lectures, workshops, performances and screenings:
Program Video Vortex #9
Video Vortex #9 was part of the Lüneburg Innovation Incubator, a major EU project financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Federal State of Lower Saxony.