Peter Campus

Peter Campus  :  isthmos  :  August 25 - September 30


notes on digital landscape:

1. my digital camera is apart from me, different, a tool.  its images are different from my own experiences.  it is important not to recreate my experience.

2. the camera adds to my experience by showing something i could not have seen, or known in any other way.

3. i bring my camera to a location, one that is in harmony with my intensions.  i am there, in that place, looking for an image that reverberates inside and out.  i am looking for a work that is in balance physically and mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

4. the camera takes a sliver of the landscape, a small bit of time, a restricted field of view.  the images imply what is outside, but must express what is within its boundary.  the camera is foveal, set within the larger field.  it is selective and simplified.

5. my camera's view is different than mine.  it is rigid, compared to the constant motion of my eye.  it is passive, and simply records what appears in front of it. 

6. i stand lost in that momentary landscape, looking through the camera, moving it this way and that.  looking again, moving again, until it is right. 

7. my fixed leica lenses are perfect for the long island light.  i compose for image and set various parameters, then leave the digital camera in place to receive data.  a chunk of durational space.

8. 24 images per second, 1/1200 of a second exposure.  each frame is distinct, discontinuous.  a bird jerks from still frame to still frame until it passes out of the field.  i am in the present, at that place, a little distant from my  camera.

9. i wait.  i can relax into my separate awareness of the land.

10. i know the land here, and the light.  i have swum in the ocean and the bay.  i have walked the dunes and the beach.  i have seen a solar eclipse here.  my comprehension of its infinity is part of my life.

11. in my workroom i am surrounded by screens: the tower screen for working on my videos, and the screen fed by the video player showing its final state.

12. the images from my camera are displaced to here.  they have been extracted much like a core sample from the earth, to be looked at, to be studied.  my first job is to sort out which images sing.  this can take months, to let my understanding of them evolve.

13. in the end the video is displaced to an exhibition, a gallery, someone's home.  it is away from me.  it belongs to others, and their own perceptual distortions and interpretations.  i can only hope they don't vary too far from my own.

-Peter Campus, 2014

An artist talk will be held Wednesday, Aug. 27, at 6 p.m. in the Delkin Recital Hall located in the Vivian Bull Music Center. A reception for Campus will follow in the Linfield Gallery.

The show, which features Campus’ latest single channel videos, will be his first solo exhibition on the West Coast. Eight videos, all from 2012 - 2013, will run concurrently on separate screens throughout the gallery.

Campus is widely considered a seminal figure in the history of video and new media art, and one of the very first to pick up a video camera and create art. He is known for his interactive and single-channel video work of the early 1970s, along with an extensive body of photographic and digital video works to the present day. He is known for his contribution to the transformation of video art into an accepted fine art medium. Campus has also worked with photography and computer imaging, focusing on the subject of nature and the exterior.

Campus' newest video works are increasingly abstract and gloriously hued. Pieces combine colors and loosely structured forms with a brilliant saturation and pixelation that could only be achieved in the digital era. Continually interested in cognitive psychology and perception, Campus explores the gap between what we see, what the camera records and what we imagine a landscape to be.

Since 1972, Campus has had over 40 solo exhibitions, including shows at the Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum in New York City. His works are part of numerous collections including Museum of Modern Art, New York; Guggenheim Museum, New York; Reina Sofia, Madrid; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Centro Cultural de Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City; and others.

He holds degrees from Ohio State University and the City College Film Institute. He has held fellowships from John Simon Guggenheim, National Endowment for the Arts and the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Peter Campus is represented by Cristin Tierney Gallery.
546 West 29th Street, New York, NY 10001

The exhibit is sponsored by the Lacroute Arts Fund, the Linfield Gallery, and the Department of Art and Visual Culture. 

The Gallery will be closed on September 1 in honor of Labor Day.

*Image Courtesy of the Artist and Cristin Tierney Gallery
red crane (still), High definition digital video. 49:26 minutes, Edition of 5


Exhibitions of regional, national and international stature are on view throughout the academic year in the 1,500 square foot space at Linfield College. Patrons can expect challenging shows that exemplify diverse approaches to the practice of contemporary visual art. Exhibits are organized by Linfield Gallery Curator and Director Cris Moss.

All exhibits are free and open to the public. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday from noon to 5 p.m. The gallery is located in the James Miller Fine Arts Center on the Linfield College campus (map). Ample parking is free. For more information, call (503) 883-2804.