The Vasulka Effect
Steina (b. 1940) and Woody Vasulka (1937–2019) are recognized as two of the most essential analog video art pioneers, whose fervent early research into the possibilities of the video medium crossed formal boundaries of television, performance, and installation. Recounting the major points of their lives and works, The Vasulka Effect is replete with biographical detail, archival footage, and first-person reminiscences from both of its charismatic subjects.
The documentary traces their meeting in the early 1960s as students in Prague (she a classically trained violinist on fellowship from her native Iceland, he a television and film student at Prague’s Academy of Performing Arts), their marriage and eventual relocation to New York City, and their founding of the legendary performance space The Kitchen, all by 1971.
Over the following decades, Steina and Woody experimented freely with analog video technology while collaborating with and teaching generations of artists. The Vasulka Effect documents, with a distinct tenderness, the shared life and career of these longtime creative partners who worked, played, and lived as equal contributors for over half a century. (Hrafnhildur Gunnarsdóttir, 2019, 97 minutes)