ETC @ 50

From: Sherry Hocking

ETC has some exciting news about our future. Ralph and I have stepped back, and ETC is moving to Atlanta, Georgia under the direction of Erik Gavriluk.

Ralph and Erik have been working together since 2019, discussing our past programs, the research into early video history, and the historic analog instruments which were used by artists in the studio for over 40 years. They reimagined ways to incorporate and nurture those legacies, while enfolding new initiatives.

Erik is an excellent guide for ETC’s next stage. He brings experience in restoring and promoting electronic machines across research, commercial and philanthropic environments, plus innovative ideas and new people.

The ETC studio and hundreds of video and audio tools and systems are now in a large space in Atlanta suitable for residency and research projects. Restoration of historically important devices is underway. Ralph and I always wanted these old machines to live on, and we look forward to this reinvention.

From: Erik Gavriluk

It’s the 50th Anniversary of the Experimental Television Center so today is all about Ralph, Sherry, and the amazing artists who contributed memoirs.

But I will confirm that all the pillars of ETC are coming back: the residency program, finishing funds, and hardware development. Plus new programs around attribution, rights recovery, and distribution.

Please join our mailing list to stay up to date with announcements.


CLIR Grant: Resurrecting the 1970s Guerrilla Television Movement ($459,150)

Sherry Miller & Ken Dominick @ Avant Garde Film Festival (1971). Photo: Van Dousmanis

Led by Media Burn in partnership with the University of Chicago, a massive preservation effort to digitize early video tapes is underway.

The effort draws from the collections of six influential media arts organizations: Media Burn, Community TV NetworkKartemquinAppalshop, NOVAC and Experimental Television Center.

The three-year project will digitize 1,015 videotapes produced from 1967-1979 with the collections of six institutions from across the United States. They represent the “Guerrilla Television” movement, a period when artists, activists, and community organizers utilized the new technology of portable video to create experimental works outside the restricted structures of broadcast television.

For more information:

About CLIR

The Council on Library and Information Resources is an independent, nonprofit organization that forges strategies to enhance research, teaching, and learning environments in collaboration with libraries, cultural institutions, and communities of higher learning.

CLIR promotes forward-looking collaborative solutions that transcend disciplinary, institutional, professional, and geographic boundaries in support of the public good.


Signal to Code: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art

Lynne Sachs, Window Work

Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Ithaca, NY
September 9 – December 18, 2016

Signal to Code provides a special emphasis on the influential history of video art in the Central New York region. Sampling forty years of video art held in the Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media in the Cornell Library, the exhibition features works created in the pioneering facilities of the Experimental Television Center in Binghamton and Owego, New York.

Founded by Ralph Hocking in 1971, ETC offered artist residencies to more than 1,600 international artists for work with the Center’s innovative electronic tools. Most American video artists received some form of support from ETC, whether through residencies or grants, thus positioning the Central New York region as pivotal to the history of video art.

The exhibition also includes artists screened in the country’s first video festival, the Ithaca Video Festival (1975–83), which was founded and curated by artist Philip Mallory Jones.

Beginning in the late 1960s, artists and technologists began to custom-create hardware and software for real-time manipulation of video signals through original designs or as hacks to devices common to television production. The artists and tool designers working together at ETC extended this work across analog and digital domains in an expanded media environment.

ETC was renowned for the experimental video processing tools developed by prominent artists and designers such as Ralph Hocking, Nam June Paik, Shuya Abe, David Jones, and Daniel Sandin. Dazzling play with electronic color and form captured the imagination of the original group of video artists, while blends of synthetic sound and radical experimentation in narrative style increasingly enveloped the imagery of more recent artists.

Video artists working in Central New York also capitalized on the creativity of video to expand the media discourses of race, gender, and sexuality.

Signal to Code at the Johnson is an extension of the exhibition Signal to Code: 50 Years of Media Art in the Goldsen Archive, on display in the Hirshland Gallery of the Carl A. Kroch Library.

Eleven works will screen simultaneously:

Ralph Hocking, Transparent Body #3, 1974. Single-channel video projection (color, silent); 14:26 min.

David Blair, Wax or The Discovery of Television Among the Bees, 1991. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 1:25 min.

Andrew Deutsch, Magnetic North, 1996-2007. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 7:37 min.

Barbara Hammer and Paula Levine, Two Bad Daughters, 1988. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 12:30 min.

Gary Hill, Earth Pulse, 1975. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 5:47 min.

Sara Hornbacher, Writing Degree Z, 1985. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 5:21 min.

Philip Mallory Jones, First World Order, 1992–94. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 27 mins.

Rohesia Hamilton Metcalfe, La Blanchisseuse, 1993. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (B&W, sound); 10:50 min.

NNeng-M (Brian Moran, Nancy Meli Walker, Benton C Bainbridge, and Molly Kittle), Tears, 1999. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 4:58 min.

Lynne Sachs, Window Work, 2000. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 9:04 min.

Ann-Sargent Wooster, Dialectics of Romance, 1985. Single-channel video on CRT monitor (color, sound); 30:54 min.

Ralph Hocking, Transparent Body

Signal to Code: 50 Years of Media Art in the Rose Goldsen Archive

March 17 – October 14, 2016
Hirshland Exhibition Gallery, Carl A. Kroch Library
Cornell University

Signal to Code: 50 Years of Media Art in The Rose Goldsen Archive explores 50 years of electronic and digital artwork and ephemera held in the Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art.

Photo: Sherry Hocking/ETC

The exhibition offers a unique opportunity to experience more than 60 original electronic and digital artworks in video, sound, portable media and the Internet, on 15 separate media display stations. The exhibition also features posters, pamphlets and other items documenting the work of international media artists and the granting agencies and cultural centers that have supported this work across artistic boundaries and geopolitical zones. “Signal to Code” provides a special emphasis on the influential histories of media art in Ithaca and the Central New York region, along with the Goldsen Archive’s extensive partnerships in Asia.

Paik/Abe Raster Manipulation Unit (1968). Photo: Sherry Hocking/ETC

The Goldsen Archive is the home of the ETC moving-image and ephemera collections. Many artists’ videotapes are included in this exhibition, as well as posters, letters and representative analog tools and systems.

This exhibition is funded through the generous support of the Stephen ’58 MBA ’59 and Evalyn Edwards ’60 Milman Exhibition Fund, and the Rose Goldsen Lecture Series.


The Experimental Television Center: A History, ETC…

Hunter College Art Galleries Presents:
The Experimental Television Center: A History, ETC . . .

Opening Reception: September 24, 2015, 7–9 pm
September 25–November 21, 2015
Gallery Hours: Wednesday–Saturday, 12–6 pm

205 Hudson Street Gallery
Hunter College MFA Campus
New York, New York

Organized by: Sarah Watson, Chief Curator of the Hunter College Art Galleries, Timothy Murray, Curator of the Rose Golden Archive of New Media Art, and Sherry Miller Hocking, Assistant Director of the Experimental Television Center.

The Exhibition

The Experimental Television Center (ETC) in Owego, New York, is one of North America’s preeminent organizations for video art, fostering a community for creativity and innovation through its residency and tool-building programs. The Experimental Television Center: A History, Etc… is the first academic survey of the Center’s prolific, yet under recognized role in the evolution of video art. Through works of art, ephemera, and video processing tools, this exhibition maps the ETC’s influence within the larger narrative of the history of video into the digital and internet age.

From its inception in 1971 over 1,600 artists participated in the ETC residency program, which functioned as a site for exploration, education, and practice for media artists. This exhibition spans works from the 1960s through the 2000s and also includes a collection of original analog instruments designed by artists/technologists, as well as two interactive installations featuring contemporary tools designed by David Jones, a long-time collaborator with ETC, and by Jason and Debora Bernagozzi, founders of the new media organization Signal Culture in Owego, New York.

Featured Artists

Benton C. Bainbridge, Perry Bard, Irit Batsry, Zoe Beloff, Kjell Bjørgeenen, Peer Bode, Nancy Buchanan, Barbara Buckner, Torsten Zenas Burns, Andrew Castrucci, Connie Coleman, Deana Crane, Renate Ferro, Raymond Ghirardo, Shalom Gorewitz, Alex Hahn, Barbara Hammer, Thomas Allen Harris, Liselot van der Heijden, Kathy High, Gary Hill, Ralph Hocking, Sherry Miller Hocking, Sara Hornbacher, Dave Jones, Philip Mallory Jones, John Knecht, Richard Kostelanetz, Shigeko Kubota, Hank Linhart, Jeanne Liotta, LoVid (Tali Hinkis and Kyle Lapidus), Kristin Lucas, Darrin Martin, Charlotte Moorman, NNeng-M (Benton C Bainbridge, Molly Kittle, Brian Moran, Nancy Meli Walker), Marisa Olson, Nam June Paik, Alan Powell, Daniel Reeves, Megan Roberts, Peter Rose, Eric Ross, Mary Ross, Lynne Sachs, Matt Schlanger, Caspar Stracke, Mark Street, Aldo Tambellini, Steina Vasulka, Woody Vasulka, Reynold Weidenaar, Walter Wright, Virgil Wong, Jud Yalkut, Arnie Zane.

About the Experimental Television Center

In 1971 Ralph Hocking, a professor in the Cinema Department at Binghamton University founded the Experimental Television Center out of his media-access organization Student Experiments in Television. As the interest in video as an artistic medium gained momentum, the ETC provided access to and training in the use of this new technology to artists, interested citizens, and social, cultural, and educational organizations. Invested in pushing the boundaries of the video medium, the ETC developed a research program to create a more flexible set of processing tools for artists. Under the direction of artist Nam June Paik and video engineer Shuya Abe, a Paik/Abe Video Synthesizer was constructed for Center’s permanent use, which launched the ETC artist’s residency program.

The Center’s philosophy and ethos endures through an ongoing commitment to education, research, and the preservation of video as a medium. According to this mission, the ETC’s comprehensive archive is now housed in the Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, and is currently being digitized, preserved, and made available for research. The Experimental Television Center would like to thank some of our many funders over the past forty years: New York State Council on the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts, Daniel Langlois Foundation for Art, Science, and Technology, the Andy Warhol Foundation, mediaThe foundation, and the Institute for Electronic Arts at Alfred University.

The Experimental Television Center: A History, Etc… is made possible by the generous support of the Hunter Exhibition Fund; Arts Across the Curriculum Initiative, Hunter College; Ruth Stanton; the Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art and the Digitization and Conservation Services, Cornell Library; Society for the Humanities, Cornell University; the Experimental Television Center; New York State Council for the Humanities; Electronic Arts Intermix, Dave Jones Design and Signal Culture.

About the Hunter College Art Galleries

The Hunter College Art Galleries, under the auspices of the Department of Art and Art History, have been a vital aspect of the New York cultural landscape since their inception over a quarter of a century ago. This exhibition builds on a long tradition of creative interchange between the disciplines of art history and studio art at Hunter.

Widely regarded as one of the leading art programs in the country, Hunter College’s Department of Art and Art History serves both undergraduate and graduate students, offering an undergraduate major in Art, a BFA and an MFA in Studio Art, and an MA in Art History. In its 2012 rankings of “America’s Best Graduate Schools,” U.S. News & World Report ranked Hunter’s Master of Fine Arts program thirteenth and the painting and drawing program seventh in the nation.


The Emergence of Video Processing Tools: Book Launch @ New Museum, NYC

Book launch for The Emergence of Video Processing Tools: Television Becoming Unglued, edited by Kathy High, Sherry Miller Hocking and Mona Jimenez (Intellect Books, 2014). New Museum, NYC, July 13, 2014.

Beginning in the late 1960s, artists and technologists began to custom-create hardware and software for real-time manipulation of video signals through original designs or as hacks to devices common to television production. Contemporary artists and tool designers continue this work in analog and digital domains in an expanded media environment.

This program will bring focus to the social and artistic dimensions of custom tool development, and to the dual impulses to create new instruments and conserve and use older ones. 

In conversation will be inventor Dave Jones, whose video instruments span forty years, artists-designers Kyle Lapidus and Tali Hinkis of LoVid, Rhizome conservator Dragan Espenschied, and Hank Rudolph of the artist space Signal Culture and the Experimental Television Center.

The book discusses such early video instruments including the Raster Manipulation Unit (aka the Wobbulator), the Paik/Abe Video Synthesizer, the Sandin Image Processor, the Rutt-Etra Video Synthesizer, the Digital Image Articulator, Pantomation, and the software HARPO, among others.

Panel organized by Rhizome and the New Museum’s Education Department with Experimental Television Center. 

Video courtesy of Jason Bernagozzi and Debora Bernagozzi of Signal Culture.


IMAP: Archiving the Arts

Independent Media Arts Preservation (IMAP) celebrates the launch of its new web resource Archiving the Arts and the recent publication of The Emergence of Video Processing Tools : Television Becoming Unglued (eds., Kathy High, Sherry Miller Hocking and Mona Jimenez) with a symposium and public program on June 13, 2015 at Burchfield Penney Art Center (BPAC), SUNY Buffalo State.

Photo courtesy of Burchfield Penny Art Center

Target participants are professionals and students with some level of expertise in audiovisual preservation. Conveners and facilitators include Andrew Ingall, Executive Director of IMAP, Archivist and Time-Based Art Conservator Jeff Martin, and Carolyn Tennant, Director of Archives and Migrating Media at Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center.

Speakers include Desiree Alexander, Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art; Madeleine Casad, Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art; Tom Colley, Collection Manager, Video Data Bank; Dianne Dietrich, Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art; Athena Christa Holbrook, The Museum of Modern Art; Joan Logue, Artist; Bill Seery, Mercer Media; and Maria Elena Venuto, The Standby Program.


Early Media Instruments: A Set of 8 DVDs

Early Media Instruments features demonstrations by Dave Jones, Hank Rudolph and Benton C Bainbridge of some of the most influential real-time analog video processing tools used by media artists internationally. Many were designed in the 1970s.

Each of the 8 DVDs covers the purpose, operation and function of a specific instrument:

• Jones Colorizer
• Jones Frame Buffer
• Jones Keyer
• Jones Sequencer
• Paik / Abe Video Synthesizer
• Raster Manipulation Unit – Wobbulator
• Rutt / Etra Model RE-4 Video Synthesizer
• Sandin Image Processor

Documentation by Carolyn Tennant, Pamela Susan Hawkins, Hank Rudolph, Mona Jimenez and Kathy High with Meredith Baxter, Monica Duncan, Neil Fried, Annie Langan, Michael Montagne, Yesael Sumalave and Terese Longova. Design and post by Matthew Underwood, Necole Zayatz and Dave Jones Design.

This DVD set was produced by the Experimental Television Center through the Video History Project.

In Memoriam

Dr. Don McArthur 1938-2012

The Experimental Television Center is sad to report the passing of Dr. Don McArthur on October 7, 2012. Don worked with others at ETC on several projects including his Spatial and Intensity Digitizer, a ground-breaking instrument, and the interface of a digital computer to analog video instruments. He also collaborated with Woody and Steina Vasulka on their Digital Image Articulator. Our sympathy is extended to his family. The obituary follows.

Donald retired from Lockheed-Martin in Irving, TX where he worked designing computer software and hardware for imaging systems and simulators. Survived by his son Michael, Michael’s wife Sophie Alexander and their daughter Gemma Mae Rose of Newfield, NY; His first wife Jane McArthur nee Spicknall originally of Lincoln, NE; three step-children from his second marriage: Suzanne, Lisa, and John and their families; several cousins. Predeceased by his parents, aunts, uncles, several cousins, and his second wife Marilyn of Homer, NY.

Donald was born January 19, 1938 in Holdrege, NE the only child of David Kenneth McArthur and Olive Bernice McArthur nee Troutman. He attended Ragan schools through 8th grade, living on the family farm south of Holdrege. Donald graduated Holdrege High School in 1955, University of Nebraska at Lincoln 1959 with a B.A. and a PhD in Theoretical Physics in 1967. At the University of Saskatchewan-Saskatoon Don filled a post-doctoral fellowship post for six years at the Linear Accelerator Laboratory where he contributed mathematical physics and advanced electronics before moving to New York State to teach at the State University in Cortland.

In the early ‘70s Donald was invited to work with The Experimental Television Center, (then in Binghamton, NY),  where artists, designers, and scientists gather to create new visual art forms and technological tools for the artists. Donald designed some of the early digital technology that lead to the development of computer-generated imagery, including 3-D images. This work led to a job with Singer-Link where he designed systems for the first flight simulator to train space shuttle pilots. His work took him to Irving TX in 1980 where he lived until 2004, working for several companies on imaging projects including LTV, Texas Instruments and Lockheed-Martin.

Don also taught as an associate professor at University of Texas at Arlington. His work earned several patents and had applications for the mars rovers and military training simulations. Donald co-authored at least one paper on simulation. This website talks about one of his innovations

Donald had many interests throughout his life, besides being dedicated to puzzling out some new problem in his work, he enjoyed reading, writing, square dancing, Buddhist meditation, painting, travel and in his youth boy scouts and amateur radio. Don loved a good joke, even more if it was dirty.


Experimental Television Center: 1969-2010 DVD Set

ETC: Experimental Television Center 1969-2009 is a five DVD set presenting the electronic media work of over one hundred artists who worked in the ETC’s Residency Program.

The collection offers a look at the evolution of the unique artist-designed sound and image tools that are the hallmark of the Center’s studio and provides a view into the constantly changing artistic processes and practices that have shaped the work over the years.

Video art began to develop in the US in the late 1960s, with the introduction of new portable video tools. While many artists used the technology to document and have voice in social and political issues, others collaborated with technologists to design unique instruments which allowed the creation of imagery never before seen. ETC remains dedicated to the development of video and digital instruments in the service of creative visual and sonic investigation by artists from around the world.

This set contains works by the first generation of video and film artists – including Barbara Hammer, Gary Hill, Jud Yalkut and Aldo Tambellini – as well as contemporary works by Marisa Olson, Kristin Lucas, Lynne Sachs and Mark Street. A complete list of artists is below.

The works have been widely exhibited internationally and received awards from festivals around the world.

For over 40 years the Center offered programs in support of the media arts, offering an international Residency Program, grants to individuals and media organizations, and sponsorship assistance for independent media and film artists. The Video History Project is an online resource for scholars documenting the formative development of media art and community television.

An essential component of the project, the digitizing of early video recorded on obsolete formats, was performed through the Standby Program by Bill Seery. We also wish to recognize Maria Venuto and Kelly Spivey for their contributions. The newly digitized ETC works are archived at Cornell University Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media, to be made available to the public for research purposes.

The project received support from the Digitization Project Grants Program at the New York State Council on the Arts, mediaThe foundation, and the Daniel Langlois Foundation for Art, Science and Technology. The project manager was Aaron Miller. The art designer for the project was Diane Bertolo (

5 DVD set, with 132 page catalog. Total running time: 19 hours.

Mara Alper • Amoeba Technology • Kristen Anchor • Benton Bainbridge • Irit Batsry • Bebe Beard • Alan Berliner • Kjell Bjorgeengen • David Blair • Peer Bode • Philip R Bonner • Jean-Pierre Boyer • Lawrence Brose • Nancy Buchanan • Barbara Buckner • Torsten Zena Burns • Michael L. V. Butler • Abigail Child • Laurie Beth Clark • Cohen Charles • Connie Coleman • Dearraindrop • Andrew Deutsch • Kenneth Dominick • Monica Duncan • Nicholas Economos • David Fodel • Joshua Fried • Larry Gartel • Raymond Ghirardo • Jonnathan Giles • Shalom Gorewitz • Carol Goss • Alexander Hahn • Barbara Hammer • Julie Harrison • Sachiko Hayashi • Janene Higgins • Gary Hill • Tali Hinkis • Sara Hornbacher • Takahiko Iimura • Kelly Jacobson • Deborah Johnson • Brian Kane • Peggy Kay • Zohar Kfir • John Knecht • Andrew Koontz • Richard Kostelanetz • Annie Langan • Kyle Lapidus • Paula Levine • Henry Linhart • Jeanne Liotta • Jason Livingston • LoVid • Kristin Lucas • Darrin Martin • Mimi Martin • Christina McPhee • Rohesia Hamilton Metcalfe • Aaron Miller • Bianca Bob Miller • Terry Mohre • Brian Moran • Ikue Mori • NNeng • Marisa Olson • Carol Parkinson • John Phillips • Michael Phillips • Alan Powell • Nicholas Ray • Megan Roberts • Ron Rocco • Peter Rose • Eric Ross • Mary Ross • Dave Ryan • Lynne Sachs • Eric Schefter • Michael Schell • Matthew Schlanger • Jessie Shefrin • Alan Sondheim • Caspar Stracke • Mark Street • Chad Strohmayer • Aldo Tambellini • Carolyn Tennant • Matthew Underwood • Liselot van der Heijden • Siebren Versteeg • Ben Vida • Nancy Walker • Reynold Weidenaar • Ann-Sargent Wooster • Walter Wright • Jud Yalkut • Neil Zusman