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National Center for Experiments in Television Records
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Accruals
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Preferred Citation
  • Scope and Contents
  • Separated Materials
  • Conditions Governing Use

  • Language of Material: English
    Contributing Institution: BAMPFA Film Library
    Title: National Center for Experiments in Television records, 1967-1975, 1998-2003
    creator: National Center for Experiments in Television
    creator: KQED-TV (Television station : San Francisco, Calif.)
    creator: Beck, Stephen, 1950-
    creator: Hallock, Don
    creator: Howard, Brice
    creator: Sears, Loren
    creator: Kyger, Joanne
    creator: Olson, Charles, 1910-1970
    Identifier/Call Number: PFA.MSS.001
    Physical Description: 2 storage cartons 2.5 linear ft.
    Date (inclusive): 1967-1975, 1998-2003
    Language of Material: Collection materials are in English
    Physical Location: UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive Film Library and Study Center

    Conditions Governing Access

    The Collection is open for research.


    Accruals are not expected.

    Biographical / Historical

    The National Center for Experiments in Television (NCET) was an unusual artists' research center initially affiliated with San Francisco's public television station, KQED. Initiated in 1967, the NCET sought an answer to a simple but hitherto overlooked question: Can artists work with the medium of television? Under the guidance of director Brice Howard, the NCET developed the concept of "videospace," an expressive realm that shunned the conventions of theater and cinema. In videospace, the electron served as raw material, and the monitor's surface of phosphors as a lively canvas. In 1975, the NCET closed its doors due to lack of financial support, leaving behind a groundbreaking body of works that redirected video technology toward unconventional visual modes. NCET members, artists from various disciplines including composers, visual artists, writers, choreographers and others, collaborated to create explorations in the artistic possibilities of television. They created approximately 120 videoworks and approximately 15 research papers dealing with aesthetic concerns that had important political and social implications, making connections among the disparate fields of psychology, social anthropology and moving image making. Several of the members participated in the Television: Art and Technology Meeting in Asilomar, California in 1973 where they presented papers.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], National Center for the Experiments in Television recorcds.[PFA-MSS-001]. UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, University of California, Berkeley.

    Scope and Contents

    This collection comprises reports, researchpapers, correspondence, artist files, meeting transcripts, and other papers relating to the National Center for Experiments in Television. Also contains secondary source materials and materials relating to the BAMPFA exhibition about the NCET, Videoscape, in 2000.

    Separated Materials

    All videocassettes from the collection have been separated to the BAMPFA film and video collection. Posters relating to the collection are included in the BAMPFA Film Library and Study Center's poster collection.

    Conditions Governing Use

    Property rights reside with the University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. Literary rights are retained by the creators of the records and their heirs. For permission to reproduce or publish, please contact the Head of the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive Film Library and Study Center.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Experimental films--United States
    Video art--California
    National Center for Experiments in Television
    National Center for Experiments in Television
    KQED-TV (Television station : San Francisco, Calif.)
    Beck, Stephen, 1950-
    Hallock, Don
    Howard, Brice
    Sears, Loren
    Kyger, Joanne
    Olson, Charles, 1910-1970