Canadian, b. 1960
Television Spots, 1987–1988
silver print, colour videotape on paper, 4/5
17.8 x 21.8 cm Image: 15.4 x 19.4 cm
Collection of the Winnipeg Art Gallery; Acquired with funds from The Winnipeg Art Gallery Foundation Inc.
Television Spots is indicative of Stan Douglas’s practice during the 1980s, when he was preoccupied with documenting the effects of technological mediation on popular culture and collective consciousness. In this installation the artist addresses modes of representaion common to television advertising and melodrama during the 1980s. Television Spots is both active and static, simultaneously interspersed into contemporaneous television programming as well as displayed as photographs with text. Though broadcasted repeatedly in an aggressive fashion similar to commercials, Television Spots does not address a homogeneous general public. Instead, Douglas addresses each viewer directly and singly, on a one-to-one, individual basis. The WAG work exploits the inherent tension of mass marketing by entering the private and personal world through a very public mode.