An Open Spirit
In the last five years, the Center of Art and Communication
(CAYC) has organized ten lnternational Open
Encounters on Video, according to the following list: I, at
the Institute of Contemporary Art, London, 1973; II,
Espace Cardin, Paris, 1974; Ill, Palazzo del Diamanti,
Ferrara, Italy, 1974; IV, CAYC, Buenos Aires, 1975; V,
lnternatlonaal Cultureet Centrum, Antwerp, Belgium, 1976;
VI, Museum of Contemporary Art, Caracas, 1977; VII,
Joan Miró Foundation, Barcelona, Spain, 1977; VIII,
Continental Gallery, Lima. 1977; IX, Alvar and Carmen
Carrillo Gil Museum, Mexico City, 1977; and X, which will
be held next May at the Sogetsu-Kaikan Building, Tokyo.
As their title indicates, these encounters are open, in
order to encompass all tendencies and authors, an
attitude demanded by video art itself. We believe that the
best explanation of the need for this spirit, and of the
scope of the medium, was formulated In February 1977,
during the Barcelona Encounter, by Katsuhiro
Yamaguchi, one of the most important creators of
Japanese video art and one of the 33 participants in CAYC’s
Japan Video Art Festival.
Yamaguchi said at that time:
“Some two hundred years ago a kind of open poetry
contents were held in Japan, with the purpose of having
a physical space turn into a communication of living art.
The coordinator initiated the encounter by pointing out
the essence of a theme, which was selected from among
the events of the corresponding season; for instance, the
first snow of winter, the light of summer, the sound of the
wind on a door.
“Not many people took part in those encounters.
Approximately thirty people gathered in a room and, over
the span of three hours, each one of them prepared
several poems, the sum of which, some two or three
hundred, formed a chain of the imagination and, later,
turned into a popular tradition or legend.
“Two centuries ago we did not have television or video
recorders, for which reason paper and brush were used.
Today we have the necessary means for an imaginary
presentation in real time: video art is the most useful of
those media. Through the years, the imagination of
mankind was captured by the artists, and ended in the
art objects. But, now, technology allows us to project
outside our mind the inner process of imagination.
“Video art makes this reconquest of the imagination
possible. It is within the reach of everybody. With it, the
poetry encounters of two hundred years can and must be reborn.”
(CAYC 1978 catalog, p. 3)