Artist Spotlight: E.S.P. TV

In a time when television and media dominates the consciousness of America’s daily life, it’s become more difficult to find authenticity in those who create mixed media for our television screens. It’s a medium driven by ratings and advertising revenue. Its something that would scare most artists away from the possibilities, due to the fact that their art may be compromised by executives who are ruled by those goals.

We tend to ignore the fact that television production is an art form. Even if the current industry is looking for ways to dominate our lives daily, they aren’t giving us anything creative or inspiring. We are haunted by false reality programming, disguised as REAL. News networks latch onto negative stories, in hopes to have those stories translate into our daily conversations. People sell their souls for 15 minutes in front of a camera. We give our likeness away, where it will become exploited as a means to draw others into the abyss of cable television.  Those that choose to film you, aren’t looking for the way to best represent you, or your story, but instead are looking for ways to use your story to fulfill their agenda.

This is why we should all be paying more attention to those who use television as a platform. The company that inspired us, is E.S.P. TV based in Brooklyn, NY.

From their website:

“E.S.P. TV is a project dedicated to promoting the performing and media based arts through direct collaboration with artists via live television production.

We run a multi faceted organization that acts as a live studio broadcast, a program on public access television, and expanded cinema. All events are taped live with a crew of cameramen, sound engineer, and video mixing team using broadcast media. Tapings of E.S.P. TV are in front of an audience with live green-screening, signal manipulation and video mixing. The live mix is then edited for time and aired on Manhattan Neighborhood Network public television (MNN), every Tuesday night at 10PM. After airing, the episodes are posted onlineatwww.esptv.com for later viewing. Our mission is to preserve public broadcast as a relevant outlet for transmission based art and to develop new video and performance works with local artists.

E.S.P. TV originally formed out of Brooklyn project space Louis V E.S.P in 2011 as a working idea of how to both document and showcase ephemeral art practices in a different way. Headed by Scott Kiernan and Victoria Keddie, E.S.P. TV has held over 50 live taping events throughout the country and internationally and has aired over 60 episodes to date on our cable access program in Manhattan. In addition to our live tapings and screenings, we have initiated the TUBE Archive as a means for republishing works and ephemera from early artist-based engagements with broadcast media. We are building a mobile broadcast van to tour the United States in partnership with organizations and artists across the nation.

E.S.P. TV works locally and internationally, with smaller venues as well as larger institutions and museums. Our goal is to track down and showcase the pulse of artistic activity, creative innovation, and action in each location we visit. E.S.P. TV has worked with various venues including: New Museum, Museum of Arts and Design, Printed Matter, Millennium Film Workshop as a part of INDEX Festival, Clemente Soto Velez Center (NYC); Interstate, Present Company, The Schoolhouse, La Sala, 285 Kent, Vaudeville Park, Spectacle Theater, Issue Project Room, Roulette (Brooklyn, NY), Franklin Street Works (Stamford, CT), Liminal Space (Oakland), Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Queens Nails Projects (San Francisco), General Public (Berlin), Kling and Bang (Reykjavik) and Pallas Projects (Dublin).”

E.S.P. TV recently raised enough money to get a broadcast van that has allowed them to tour the U.S., where they collaborate with local artists, and put together a collage of art, music and live performance. All shows are edited, mixed and manipulated live through analog hardware and new technologies. The end result, is a brilliant blend of nostalgia, and progressive concepts that reveal an exciting time for artists to look at broadcast television as a medium.

They are currently on the road, visiting cities across the U.S., with a few dates left to experience their magick, as a part of the live audience (see below).

E.S.P. TV Live Taping at Secret Service, Minneapolis

Thursday, April 23, 2015

8:00pm  11:00pm

Dreamweapon, Tender Meat, Chris LeBlanc and Mach Fox + more TBA

Video works by: Peter Burr, Sabrina Ratté, Jeremy Couillard, and Jeremy Rotsztain

Collaboration with Jonathan Thomas (The Third Rail)


E.S.P. TV Live Taping at Nightingale, Chicago, IL

Saturday, April 25, 2015

7:00pm  9:00pm

ONO, Matchess, Nick Ciontea, Mothergirl

Video works by: Heather Dewey-Hagborg & Thomas Dexter, Fern Silva, Sabrina Ratté, Jeremy Couillard, Jeremy Rotzstain, Peter Burr

E.S.P. TV is a non profit, affiliated with the Fractured Atlas Charity. They have the right intentions, and are doing this for the sake of making art that is new and exciting, while discovering artists internationally to collaborate with. Take the time to explore the website and their videos, and if you can afford a donation, at least you know it is going toward something culturally important that could *hopefully* change the way we look at TV broadcasting, and true reality television, through the eyes of an artist. If you are in Minneapolis, or Chicago this week, go visit these gypsies.

“Blessed are the gypsies. The makers of music, artists, writers, dreamers of dreams, wanderers and vagabonds, children and misfits: for they teach us to see the world through beautiful eyes.”


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