A Retrospective on WGBH and Experimental Television, 1968-1970

This year, the WGBH Media Library and Archives (MLA), a participating station of the American Archive of Public Broadcasting (AAPB), has begun hosting quarterly archives screenings as part of the WGBH Insiders Screening Series. Last week’s screening, A Retrospective on WGBH and Experimental Television from 1968-1970, offered a unique look into WGBH’s role as one of the first public media stations to explore television as an artistic medium. Over 100 members and guests visited WGBH to view segments of WGBH’s experimental television, including What’s Happening, Mr. Silver?; Madness and Intuition, The Medium is the Medium, and Violence Sonata.

Panelists included:

• Fred Barzyk, the original producer of WGBH’s series New Television Workshop

• George Fifield, Founder and Director of Boston Cyberarts Inc.

• Aldo Tambellini, Multimedia artist who created work for WGBH/Public Broadcasting Laboratory’s 1969 production called The Medium is the Medium

The event was moderated by Ryn Marchese, Engagement and Use Manager for the American Archive of Public Broadcasting, and Peter Higgins, Archives Manager at WGBH Media Library and Archives. Digital Archives Manager Leah Weisse curated an exhibit of relevant production and promotional materials to provide context to the evening’s focus. AAPB and MLA thank Elizabeth Hagyard for her support and collaboration on the event, as well as other staff in events, legal, marketing, and engineering, and WGBH volunteers who helped make the night a success!

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Introductory slide for The Medium is the Medium (1969) displaying the six contributing artists. From left to right on stage: Peter Higgins, Ryn Marchese, Fred Barzyk, and George Fifield.
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Aldo Tambellini speaks about his video art in The Medium is the Medium (1969).
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Digital Archives Manager Leah Weisse curated an exhibit of relevant production and promotional materials to provide context to the evening’s focus.

Event slide deck:

Original post from WGBH Media Library and Archives’ blog at https://wordpress.com/view/blog.openvault.wgbh.org.

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