At the opening night of the National Tertiary Art Prize I had an interesting conversation about the current popularity of video art. One theory is that the invention and dissemination of LCD televisions has returned video to the pictorial realm. Wall mounted flat screen video is the new painting; framed, contained.

One could argue that the LCD television and video projection cover much of the same ground. However, aside from issues of scale, I think that projection requires some specific environmental considerations which make it less accessible than wall mounted televisions.

At Sydney College of the Arts the sculpture studio is also known as the SPI studio. SPI stands for Sculpture, Performance and Installation. This year there will be over thirty televisions in the undergraduate degree show from the SPI studio alone. As far as I know the majority of these televisions are CRT not LCD.

Perhaps we are just working within our limits, hoping to upgrade to LCD when we make it big. The humble budget of the impoverished art student will not stretch to liquid crystal. Or is it possible that there is some aesthetic appeal to the old cathode ray tube?

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