MACBA 1996-1998

Brian Springer. February 1998

  • Spin
    The author: Brian Springer is a producer and independent filmmaker in the U.S. He has actively collaborated in projects for American public television, especially in initiatives centrered on the community and public debate. He is a founding memeber of “Buffalo-Access Cable Media.” His recordings have been included in videos by other filmmakers, such as Feed, by Kevin Rafferty and James Ridgeway.

    Spin. EUA, 1995. 58’
    Spin is an experiment by Brian Springer, who, over the course of 1992 studied the unedited broadcasts of satellite television in th U.S. Springer taped more than 600 hours of material, during and outside the normal taping schedules in order to document and show the real structure of power hidden behind the media scenery of an election year. The artist, who also narrates SPIN, shares the results of his experiment as just another citizen, from one viewer to another. This piece exposes how U.S. television in particular, and that of the world in general silence public debate and weaken the critical atitutde of any audience outside the circles of influence made up of the clan of journalists, politicians, image consultants and televangelists. SPIN documents the Los Angeles riots caused by the Rodney King verdicts and the media spectacle of the 1992 U.S. presidential election campaign. SPIN exposes the illusionary character of television by using pirated signals from the network of satellite communications. This platform serves the big American television networks by distributing its unedited signals all over the country. These emissions include what the viewer doesn´t see of debates and interviews with personalities when the curtain is closed on regular programming, during commercial breaks, spaces when the big TV stars and politicians and their image consultants carry on discretely hidden conversations, outside the limits of public broadcasts. This material is technically accessible to more than three and a half million viewers who own parabolic antennae, through which they can get access to this virgin, unrefined information. Often this informative material reveals the dark and unknown face of political and media personalities, putting in eveidence strategies prepared to seduce the audience, and conserving in all its intensity the totalitarian potential of media mechanisms. The television fragments appropriated from the satellite web helps to understand the bases of the television factory, reveals the mask, and with total cruelty drwas a profile of a kind of fundamentalism at the service of political and economic interests. Presumably isolated from the precise gaze of the camera and the attentive ear of the microphone, media agents relax, get made up, and the habitual editing of their speeches is transformed into a crude and sincere declaration of their true ethical and human principles.