Scope and Content of Collection
Title: Long Beach Museum of Art Video Archive
Date (inclusive): circa 1964-2003
Long Beach Museum of
465 Linear Feet
(127 boxes, circa 5,000 videos)
The Getty Research Institute
1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100
Los Angeles 90049-1688
The Long Beach Museum of Art (LBMA) was
among the first museums in the United States to focus on video as an artistic medium. The
materials in the archive document LBMA's innovative approaches to collecting, producing and
displaying video art, primarily between 1974 and 1999. Materials include artist files;
exhibition records; LBMA's administrative records pertaining to the video program; materials
on the museum's grant and cable television programs; photographic materials; and almost
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Language: Collection material is in English
The Long Beach Museum of Art (LBMA) began collecting and exhibiting video art in 1974 and
in three decades developed one of the most significant video collections in the country,
comprising approximately 5,000 videotapes. LBMA's video program started when museum
director, Jan Adlmann, hired curator David Ross to establish the museum's video program.
Exhibiting video as an artistic medium was at the forefront of LBMA's mission during the
1970s. The video program allowed artists to display their videos through experimental
exhibitions like the Southland Video Anthology (1975-1978), which featured work by hundreds
of video artists. Video art exhibitions were already taking place in Europe and on the East
Coast in the mid-1960s, and LBMA played a pivotal role in bringing video art to West Coast
In 1976, LBMA became the first museum to provide an in-house production facility where
artists could produce and edit their videos. The production facility was located in the
museum's attic, and was internally known as the Artist's Post Production Studio (APPS). APPS
offered artists a place to create video art, and in exchange for this service, artists would
leave a copy of their work with the museum. Through APPS, the museum began to develop a
video collection, albeit inadvertently. Artists would also send copies of their work to the
museum to be included in the collection. Around 1979, LBMA received a grant from the
Rockefeller Foundation to open the Video Annex (also known as the Station Annex), located
next to a fire station the Belmont Shore neighborhood of Long Beach, California. The Video
Annex was primarily used as a post-production studio, and held two editing studios, Studio A
and Studio B. The Video Annex became a source of revenue for the museum, as artists rented
the space to edit their work using broadcast-quality equipment. LBMA established a residency
program, allowing artists to live in the Annex while producing and editing their work.
Artists were also commissioned to create works for broadcast television at the Annex, and
the space eventually housed the museum's growing collection of videos.
In addition to supporting the work of video artists through exhibitions and the production
facility, LBMA also offered grant programs, including Open Channels Television Production
Grant Program, the Video Access Program, and New Visions: Video Production and Presentation
Program. LBMA was able to present the medium to a wider audience by producing many cable
series and live broadcast events through local cable television networks, and in partnership
with other institutions, such as The Kitchen in New York, the University of California, Los
Angeles, and the University of Iowa. In the early 1980s, LBMA produced the cable series,
Shared Realities: A Cultural Arts Cable Series, which featured interviews,
art videos, music, and live performances. Other cable programs included
Arts Revue, and
Art Off the Wall.
LBMA also acquired the video archive of the Los Angeles Woman's Building after it closed in
1991. Founded in 1973, the Woman's Building was an independent feminist arts institution
that served as a center for education and activism.
In the mid-1990s, the museum closed its video program, but kept the Video Annex open for a
few more years to generate income. California artists played an important part in creating
video art history, and through the museum's innovative programming, artists and curators
were able to work together to create a substantial collection of video art. Collectively,
the materials in the archive trace LBMA's role in the early history of the medium through
its multi-faceted efforts to support artists and public understanding of video art.
Open for use by qualified researchers. Videos are unavailable until reformatted.
Long Beach Museum of Art Video Archive, circa 1970-2000. The Getty Research Institute, Los
Angeles, Accession no. 2006.M.7
Transferred from the Long Beach Museum of Art in 2006.
The following interns cataloged artists' tapes in Series VI and processed corresponding
records in Series I under the supervision of Jocelyn Gibbs and Andra Darlington: Amy Sloper
(2006-2007), Leah Kerr (summer 2007), Tim Wilson (fall 2007), Patti Peregrine (winter and
spring 2008) and Holly Larson (fall 2008). Darlington cataloged the Woman's Building tapes
in Series IX, many artists' tapes in Series VI and exhibition tapes in Series VII
(2007-2008). Devon Bella finished processing Series I-IV (2009-2010).
From 2009 to 2011 Annette Doss finished cataloging the artists' tapes in Series VI and
cataloged many exhibition tapes in Series VII. Under Doss's supervision, Natalie Snoyman
processed the photographs in Series V (fall 2010) and Philip Leers processed the tapes
related to grant and cable programs in Series VIII (summer and fall 2011).
Currently the exhibition tapes are still being processed and cataloged, and a number of
miscellaneous tapes also remain unprocessed. Numerous videos have been digitized and are
to on-site readers and Getty staff.
Many videos have been reformatted. Some DVD use copies are available in the repository, as
indicated in the catalog records for individual video works; other videos are
to on-site Readers and Getty staff.
Scope and Content of Collection
The Long Beach Museum of Art Video Archive documents more than three decades of LBMA's
engagement with video art, from the late 1960s through 2003. At the heart of the archive are
approximately 5,000 videos collected or produced by LBMA, including single-channel video
artworks and installation works, taped interviews with artists, collectors, and curators,
and video documentation of exhibitions, performances and other events at the museum and
throughout Southern California. The paper component of the archive contains LBMA
institutional records pertaining to the museum's activities in video art collecting,
exhibition, production and distribution.
Series I contains files on most, but not all, of the artists whose work is included in the
video collection, as well as additional artists whose works are not represented in the
archive. Some materials relate to the artist in general and some pertain to specific
artworks. Artist files often include materials such as acquisition and donor forms,
correspondence, artists' curriculum vitae, press clippings, screening announcements, project
proposals, and a few drawings and sketches. Artists with particularly substantial files
include Eleanor Antin, John Baldessari, Chris Burden, Gary Hill, Nam June Paik, Ilene
Segalove, and Bill Viola.
Series II documents video exhibitions organized by and/or presented at the Long Beach
Museum of Art from 1975 to 1999. Exhibition records often include press releases, printed
announcements, catalogs, posters, text for printed materials, program notes, screening
schedules, installation notes and sketches, correspondence, mailing lists, acquisition
forms, loan and payment receipts, and press clippings. Among the exhibitions represented in
the series are Southland Video Anthology (1975-1978), California Video (1980), and The
Artist and the Computer (1983).
Documenting LBMA's grant-making programs for video production, Series III contains press
releases, subsidy applications, artists' applications and video proposals. The primary grant
programs were Open Channels Television Production Grant Program, the Video Access Program,
and New Visions: Video Production and Presentation Program. Also in Series III are records
pertaining to LBMA's distribution of video art through cable programs such as
Viewpoints on Video,
Art Off the
Shared Realities. These materials often include
programming notes, budgets, tape rental forms, and reports for the museum's collaborative
The Administrative records in Series IV are comprised of executive and managerial
documents, such as the LBMA Foundation curatorial grant applications and reports consisting
of capital and operational support requests and supplementary materials. Also included are
papers relating to the production facility at the Video Annex; records documenting the
development and preservation of the video archive and library; David Ross papers, consisting
of correspondence and files he kept on institutions; meeting notes relating to advisory
organizations, such as the Video Council and National Alliance of Media Art Centers (NAMAC);
subscriptions, serials, newsletters, and mailings.
Series V contains photographic materials, including artist portraits, documentation of
installations, and video stills. This series contains black and white prints, negatives,
contact sheets, color photography, and transparencies. The majority of the files include
installation shots from exhibitions organized by and presented at LBMA between 1974 and
1998, as well as video stills from individual artists' works. In addition, there are a few
instances of correspondence in the series, usually between the artist and staff members of
Most of the artist videos Series VI and exhibition videos in Series VII have been cataloged
and may be found in the
by searching for artists' names or the titles of works
or exhibitions. To browse through all cataloged works, search for the title, "Long Beach
Museum of Art Video Archive."
Series VIII, Grant and cable program videos, is comprised of 237 videotapes that document
video art, interviews, performances and events that were produced by LBMA and aired on cable
television from 1983 through 1993.
Series IX contains more than 250 tapes from the Los Angeles Woman's Building, and includes
feminist performance videos, video art, and documentation of the feminist movement in
Southern California through interviews, performances, readings and other events. The Woman's
Building tapes have been cataloged and may be found by searching the
for the Woman's Building in the author field.
Videos are unavailable until reformatted.
information about how to request reformatting.
Arranged in nine series:
Artists' files, circa 1966-2002;
Series II. Exhibition files,
Series III. Grant and cable program
files, 1976-1999, undated;
Series IV. Administrative
Series V. Photographs, 1964-1998,
Series VI. Artists' videos, circa
Series VII. Exhibition videos,
circa 1970-circa 2003;
Series VIII. Grant and cable
program videos, 1983-1993;
Series IX. Woman's Building videos,
circa 1973-circa 1991.
Subjects - Topics
Art museums -- Exhibitions -- United States
Art exhibitions -- 20th century
Long Beach Museum of Art -- Exhibitions
Genres and Forms of Material
Videocassettes -- United States -- 20th century
Black-and-white prints (photographs)
Video art -- United States -- 20th century
Color slides -- United States -- 20th century
Long Beach Museum of