Robert Whitman created some of the earliest and most important performance works of the 1960s. In his performances, the poetic and often surprising interaction of film, lights, sound, live performers, props, and objects that take on a life of their own create a dense visual, non-narrative dramatic structure.
This DVD captures for the viewer important and seminal examples of this ephemeral art form. It makes available for the first time original recordings of three of Whitman’s 1960s performances and documents the creative thinking of an innovative artist – and the artistic climate of the time.
Included is original footage of The American Moon (1960) and Flower (1963), both filmed by Whitman as notes to himself, and short documentaries about the works – featuring interviews with Trisha Brown, Jim Dine, Simone Forti, Claes Oldenburg, Lucas Samaras, and the artist. A recent performance of Prune Flat (1965) is accompanied by an interview with Whitman on the piece. A bonus video presents Ghost, Whitman’s recent theater work, first performed in September 2002, with notes by Lynne Cooke and Arne Glimcher.