TV Museum: Contemporary Art and the Age of Television, Bristol and Chicago: Intellect Books, 2014. ISBN 9781783201815.
A critical analysis of the critique and memorialisation of television in art and curatorial practice, with chapters on exhibiting television; soap and sitcom formats in artists’ video; reality TV and the social turn in contemporary art; artists and TV archives; broadcasting and art in the public realm; television talk in art institutions, and labour practices in art and TV cultures.
RESPONSES TO TV Museum:
‘Scholarship on the art world’s encounter with television takes a massive step forward with the publication of TV Museum. In this original and intelligent book, Maeve Connolly lays out a comprehensive anatomy of the shape this encounter has taken in recent decades, focusing not only on artists but also on curators, cultural agencies, and community organizations. Her research base is international in scope, her prose is concise and lucid, and her analysis has a freshness that readers will appreciate. This book leads the field beyond overly familiar binaries – high vs. low, authoritarianism vs. democracy – by showing that working professionals in contemporary art do not treat TV as a singular apparatus or set of effects. It is at once a physical object, an audiovisual archive, a source of entertainment, a business model, and a public purveyor of history, and Connolly’s thoughtful analysis traces the kinds of work that are made possible as artists, curators, museum directors, and gallerists increasingly acknowledge television in all these forms. This visually stunning book, packed with well-chosen color illustrations, promises to be the authoritative text on the incorporation of television and art for a very long time.’
Anna McCarthy, Professor of Cinema Studies, New York University
‘Maeve Connolly […] keenly analyzes the medium’s particular public dimension to place TV alongside that flagship institution of the decaying public sphere: the museum. Her argument is supported by shifts both in readings of TV and in artistic practice. […] TV Museum looks closely at the construction of museums as a realm of high art and TV as a realm of low art to show how these statuses were in fact constantly in the processes of being negotiated and legitimated, while suggesting that these concepts are both now fully under threat with our changing notions of the public sphere. This is the central (and substantial) contribution of the study to the field.’
Review of TV Museum: Melissa Gronlund, ‘Network Theork’, Artforum, January 2015, 31-32, contd. 238.
‘Connolly undertakes a compelling and exhaustive study of the ways in which contemporary artists are re-imagining TV now that it has lost its central position in the arena of mainstream entertainment culture and its products have been remediated across diverse platforms, on and offline. She makes a compelling case for the repurposing or cross-purposing of professional television studios and galleries […]. Connolly gives us hope that the “televisual turn” and the artists she has championed so convincingly in this book, will help to bring what is now a quotidian cultural form back into critical focus’.
Catherine Elwes (review of TV Museum), MIRAJ: Moving Image Review & Art Journal, Volume 3 Number 2, 2015, 282-290.
‘By linking television and the museum [Connolly] charts a history of contemporary art’s increasingly enamored incorporations of television, revealing the laziness of a hastily applied high/low cultural dichotomy. Harnessing the comparative brevity of this relationship […] “televisual distance”, or an outsider’s perspective, provides a tool to examine the museum’s operations from a new and revelatory perspective.’
Alison Wielgus, (Review of TV Museum), Millennium Film Journal 62, Fall 2015: 51-53.
‘In TV Museum: Contemporary Art and the Age of Television, Maeve Connolly reassesses the place of television in art as it intersects with new institutional pressures on museums of modern and contemporary art to negotiate their own relevance within a broader cultural field dominated by the experience economy. […] TV Museum weaves together arguments drawn from discourses that often do not intersect: television and media studies, communication studies, and contemporary art criticism. It asks questions equally relevant to artists, curators, art historians and theorists of media.’
Erica Levin, ‘TV Museum: Contemporary Art and the Age of Television by Maeve Connolly’. Book Review. Alphaville: Journal of Film and Screen Media 10 (Winter 2015). Web. ISSN: 2009-4078. http://www.alphavillejournal.com/Issue10/HTML/ReviewLevin.html
The Place of Artists’ Cinema: Space, Site and Screen Bristol and Chicago: Intellect Books, 2009. ISBN 9781841502465. [The book is now out of print, but an e-book version is available for purchase from Intellect’s website].
RESPONSES to The Place of Artists’ Cinema:
‘Maeve Connolly is the first film scholar in any language to explicate in depth contemporary artists’ insights on the cinema, new media, photography and cinephilia. She engages the specialist as well as the educated reader, by addressing the difference between information and translation, animation and re-enactment in the context of major art exhibitions all over the world.’
Angela Dalle Vacche, Professor of Film Studies, Georgia Institute of Technology (endorsement, back cover).
‘This is a timely work – one that formulates ideas about the flowering of film and moving image work that has taken place since the 1990s: something that is only now being reflected upon. As a contribution to this debate, Maeve Connolly’s book is a welcome and a critical one’.
Mo White, review for The Art Book, Volume 17, Issue 2 May 2010, pp 65-66.
‘The Place of Artists’ Cinema’s rigorous interdisciplinary inquiry into the conditions of production and exhibition associated with post-1990’s artists’ cinema, both inside and outside the institutional context of contemporary art, is a welcome and long overdue contribution to the extant literature.’
Kate Mondloch, ‘Placing Artists’ Cinema’, Jump Cut 52, Summer 2010.
‘The concept of ‘artists’ cinema’ is tirelessly operationalised and consistently enlivened across five detailed, rather different and differentiating (but always cogent) substantive chapters. […] Connolly’s arguments force us to think of ‘artists’ cinema’ as a form or practice that raises interesting questions, for example, about the nature of ‘place’, about the ‘market’ or ‘post-Fordist capital’, about the notion of the ‘public space’, about the status and scope of ‘events’’
Robert Porter, review for Variant 36, Winter 2009: 36-37.
‘[Connolly] pays particular attention to how social relations are structured within these spaces, and to the relationship that moving images within the gallery have to notions of place and site. […] One of the most interesting chapters in the book focuses critical attention on attempts to make film and video legible within the discourse of art and therefore legible to the market.’
Dan Kidner, review for LuxOnline, October 2009.
‘Focusing on developments since the mid 1990s, Connolly […] examines the various ways in which contemporary art practitioners have claimed the narrative techniques and modes of production associated with cinema as a cultural form. She notes that the explicit commercialisation of film and television production over the past decade, especially within the UK context, is likely to have impelled certain practitioners towards the gallery. […] Thus The Place of Artists’ Cinema […] opens up a new set of questions about cinema and the place of artists within the public sphere.’
Bethsheba Achitsa, review/article, Artmatters.info: Flaunting Arts and Culture in Africa, September 2009
A collection of artists’ texts and projects by Matthew Buckingham, Valerie Connor, Ania Corcilius, Michelle Deignan, Bettina Funcke, Andrea Geyer, Brian Hand, Lana Lin, Dennis McNulty, Andrea Ray and Eva Rothschild, among others. The Glass Eye is available to by from Project Arts Centre.
RESPONSES to The Glass Eye:
‘The Glass Eye’ includes artists’ projects created specifically for the book, examples of work in progress and theoretical texts in which artists investigate different aspects of television. [Connolly and Ryan] want the book to act as a starting point for the artists who have contributed and those who will come to experience their work – rather than masquerading as the definite statement that an exhibition catalogue often provides.
Cristin Leach, RTE Arts website, 7 December 2000