CONTENTS

 
   about
   MICHAEL BETANCOURT NEWS
   movies: AESTHETICS
   movies: NEWS & REVIEWS
   movies: SHOWS & SCREENINGS
   random art notes
   random how-tos
   research: AVANT-GARDE MOVIES
   research: MOTION GRAPHICS
   research: VISUAL MUSIC
   theory: CRITICAL OBSERVATIONS
   theory: DIGITAL CAPITALISM
   theory: GLITCH & POSTDIGITAL
   theory: working notes

 

PORTFOLIO

 
Movies by Michael Betancourt

 michaelbetancourt.com
 Art of Light Organization
 Going Somewhere
 exhibitions [pdf]
 updates
 books
 contact
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  Video Art listserv
 




 

SEARCH ARCHIVES

archives begin in 1996

  
 
avant-garde movies, motion graphics, and theory
 
by Michael Betancourt
 

This site presents extracts from Michael Betancourt's current research and writing projects, with news about current developments. A portfolio of finished, published writing is available here.

His trilogy of studies on film theory using title sequences as a model uniting avant-garde, documentary and commercial motion pictures were published in the Routledge Studies in Media Theory and Practice series: Semiotics and Title Sequences, Synchronization and Title Sequences, and Title Sequences as Paratexts.

If you are looking for more on agnotology, digital capitalism, or automated/immaterial labor and AI, look at The Digital, which presents links to his most recently published articles and other research on the political economy of digital capitalism contained in his books The Critique of Digital Capitalism and Force Magnifier. This analysis identifies how digital technology has captured contemporary society in a reification of capitalist priorities that includes the shift to automation and AI. The theory proposed in this book is the description of how digital capitalism as an ideologically invisible framework is realized in technology.

You can watch his movies here.

More articles, reviews, interviews, and translations are posted on MichaelBetancourt.com


 


Research Art - now available

story © Michael Betancourt | published September 17, 2021 | permalink | TwitThis Digg Facebook StumbleUpon  |  Print



MICHAEL BETANCOURT NEWS

My new book Research Art: glitches, poetics, typography and the aura of the digital is now available from amazon.com! Full color illos, and only $24.95!

This book discusses linking theory and practice in a larger context of conceptual and theoretical concerns that are neither a statement of intentions, nor merely a subjective series of claims about past accomplishments. With 21 illustrations in full color, this book discusses his digital glitch movies, typoetry, abstract photography, and the Instaglitch series as direct examples of the connections between theory and practice, illuminating his proposal for "Research Art" as a domain equal to the "Business Art" familiar from exhibitions in the gallery-fair-museum network. Polemical and often challenging, it explores the role of expectations in making and interpreting art from the vantage point of the studio, rather than as a critic or historian, arguing that "Research Art" is the evolution of the critical position developed by Conceptual Art and Situationalism as the avant-garde program in art came to an end, an adaptation to the changed Contemporary reality of AI, globalization, and digital technology, an oppositional art made in the shadows of digital capitalism.






 
E-Book Versions for Online Classes

story © Michael Betancourt | published September 9, 2021 | permalink | TwitThis Digg Facebook StumbleUpon  |  Print



MICHAEL BETANCOURT NEWS

One of the problems with teaching during the pandemic is the accessibility of textbooks. Here are links to ebook versions of some of my books for anyone who needs them:

The History of Motion Graphics

A Short Guide to Writing About Motion Graphics

Force Magnifier: The Cultural Impacts of Artificial Intelligence

Glitch Art in Theory and Practice: Critical Failures and Post-Digital Aesthetics

Semiotics and Title Sequences: Text-Image Composites in Motion Graphics

Title Sequences as Paratexts: Narrative Anticipation and Recapitulation

Synchronization and Title Sequences: Audio-Visual Semiosis in Motion Graphics

Typography and Motion Graphics: The 'Reading-Image'

Ideologies of the Real in Title Sequences, Motion Graphics and Cinema

Beyond Spatial Montage: Windowing, or the Cinematic Displacement of Time, Motion, and Space

The Critique of Digital Capitalism






 
new Listserv for Video Art!

story © Michael Betancourt | published August 18, 2021 | permalink | TwitThis Digg Facebook StumbleUpon  |  Print



movies: NEWS & REVIEWS
Subscribe Here

Listserv-VideoArt is an international forum for media art in all its forms: digital video, experimental video, avant-garde video, video art, video installation, light art, glitch art, visual music and visual poetry; video's expressive qualities, aside from or in addition to its storytelling capacity. Any genre of both digital and analogue video art, including diary, glitch, abstract, processed, animated, found footage, lyric, subversive, expanded, projection mapped, etc., can be discussed, as well as those movies which fall into the cracks between the genres, or those not covered by other lists.

All aspects of video art, from production to criticism, are acceptable in this context, including personal productions, techniques, histories and aesthetics of video art, critical discussions, new directions, courses and teaching, festivals, announcements of world-wide events in video art, exhibitions and retrospectives, exchanges of information, etc. This list is not intended for the discussion of commercial video or motion graphics, neither narrative film, nor documentary film, nor film as art, nor the history of avant-garde film.






 
The Aesthetic Problem Posed by Digital Capitalism

story © Michael Betancourt | published July 24, 2021 | permalink | TwitThis Digg Facebook StumbleUpon  |  Print



theory: DIGITAL CAPITALISM

Here is a preview from my new book, Research Art: glitches, poetics, typography and the aura of the digital available soon:


Composer John Cage noted the problem of history in the 1950s; it is an issue that has grown more important, rather than less, in the decades since. Artists adopting a self-conscious positioning in relation to a specific history (tradition)whether in a sense of continuing it, or in the sense of escaping from itunifies the positivistic dimensions of Modernism and Post-Modernist alike. To the extent that the Contemporary embrace of relativism is ahistorical, it is not an escape from this avant-guardiste positivism, but a response to the post-structural critique that introduced a plurality of directions that now dominate discourse within the gallery-fair-museum network. This expansion of aesthetic opportunity has not minimized the need for self-conscious positioning, it has starkly highlighted it. The issue in confronting the Contemporary is to separate emotional, dialectical, traditional conceptions of opposition and resistance (the heritage of the avant-garde) to consider a tactical relaction that demonstrates Cages koan-like observation:

One does not then just any experiment, but does what must be done; one does not seek by his actions to arrive at money, but does what must be done; one does not seek by his actions to arrive at fame (success), but one does what must be done; but does what must be done; one does not seek by his actions to provide pleasure to the senses (beauty), but one does what must be done; one doe not seek by his actions to arrive at the establishment of a school (truth), but one does what must be done. One does something else. What else?

Cage, J. Silence (Middleton: Wesleyan University Press, 2011) p. 68.




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A Note on 'Typoetry' - on Utsanga.it

story © Michael Betancourt | published July 7, 2021 | permalink | TwitThis Digg Facebook StumbleUpon  |  Print



MICHAEL BETANCOURT NEWS

My discussion of asemic typography in terms of semiotic theory, A Note on 'Typoetry' (which uses examples of my work as illustrations) has been published in Utsanga.it no. 28.