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Over the past thirty years film and video has had an increasing presence in the gallery space rather than in the cinema auditorium.

For some film and video artists this reflects an affinity to sculptural form in space, for others the need to present their work over an indefinite duration, rather than as an event. It could also be seen as a response to the increasing interest in screening film and video by art institutions and it's corresponding lack of support from more traditional film organisations.

The development of the film and video installation can be traced back to the early 1970s. Use of film and video in the gallery space began to emerge from exhibitions such as the Serpentine Gallery's Video Show (1975) and the ICA's Festival of Expanded Cinema (1976). Artists such as Ron Haselden combined film projection and audience participation with other sculptural elements in the gallery space, from railway trolleys to photographs and drawings. Along with other film-makers such as William Raban, he explored the possibilities of the film loop, which allowed a film to run for an indefinite period of time. This enabled the experience of the moving image to be determined by the architecture of the gallery space and the unrestricted movements of the audience. These fundamental characteristics still form the basis of much film and video installation experienced in galleries today. Artists such as Ian Breakwell, who was involved in many of these early multi-media experiments, continue to explore the limits of moving image in the gallery through installations such as The Other Side.

The first video installations were determined by the limited technology available, so that the monitor based delivery system of the video image becoming an intrinsic and sculptural part of the installation. David Hall and Tina Keane were amongst the first British artists to explore the sculptural characteristics and potential of video installation in works such as Kean's Demolition/Escape (1983) and Hall's Vidicon Inscriptions (The Installation) (1975). Video installation work of this nature was encouraged by festivals in the 1990s such as Video Positive in Liverpool and the Video Wall commissions at Tate Liverpool.

Developments in video and digital technology now mean that the moving image is freed from the sculptural form of the monitor box to be presented as large scale multi-screen projections within the gallery space. The gallery now acts as an immersive, potentially cinematic, space in which digital projection offers the spectacle of multi-screen projection in the work of Stuart Croft, Isaac Julien and Jananne Al Ani's The Visit (2004). However, video continues to be used as an element in installations which include other objects and materials, in the case of Katherine Meynell's Vampire S Eat a small screen is embedded in the seat of a chair, encouraging a very different viewing experience for the audience.

Installation shot of MFV

MFV Maureen

6 screen projection of a fishing trawler out in the North Sea.

Still from Kiss

The Kiss

The forced development of a hot-house flower.

Demolition / Escape installation

Demolition / Escape

An installation using seven monitors and a model steam train.

The Other Side installation

The Other Side

A film featuring panoramic vistas of ballroom dancers gliding dreamlike on the de la Warr pavilion balcony.

The Long Road to Mazatlan

The Long Road to Mazatlan

'A fantasia on the American Southwest that focuses with characteristic ambivalence on the social construction of masculinity in popular representations of that mythic landscape.'

Century City

Century City

Century City is a dual-screen film installation that creates a narrative and spatial impossibility.

The Visit

The Visit

The desert landscape in which Al-Ani places the suited man in a theatrical space of dislocation.

Vampire S Eat

Vampire S Eat

A single LCD screen embedded into the cushion of a chair, the image and sound of a licking tongue slurping against the glass conjuring up horrors.

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