Sweeping Up the Place | LACDA by Jesse Russell Brooks

Image from   Sweeping up the Place   (2006) by Jesse Russell Brooks

Image from Sweeping up the Place (2006) by Jesse Russell Brooks

Los Angeles, Ca. - Originally commissioned by artist and curator Lee Walton through funding provided by Rhizome at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, NY. Sweeping Up the Place is the first of 2 video performances Brooks developed for Walton's project titled Remote Instruction.

Lee Walton has an expanded practice that includes curating, drawing, performance, and social examination. His shows often employ a system of rules, chance, and are driven by collaboration. In 2005, he conducted over 20 different artists in multiple countries to bring together a collection of video performances in which he titled Remote Instruction.  These performances were designed to explore the power of media in relation to communication, geography, and social collaboration. 

This collaboration led to the creation of two video performances by Brooks for Walton's show. Sweeping up the Place (2006) and Incognito (2006). These video performances took place at over 30 locations throughout the state of California including Vasquez Rocks, Mt Shasta, Los Padres National Forrest, and West Cliff Drive Santa Cruz.

Image from   Incognito   (2006) by Jesse Russell Brooks

Image from Incognito (2006) by Jesse Russell Brooks

Sweeping up the place and Incognito were presented as part of Walton's exhibit Remote Instruction at The New Museum New York in 2007.  Since then, several iterations of both works have exhibited internationally including a 5 channel video installation titled Natural Disobedience (2015), at the Los Angeles Center for Digital Art.

Sweeping up the Place will be on display at The Los Angeles Center For Digital Art from October 14, 2017 through November 9, 2017.


Los Angeles Center For Digital Art
104 East 4th Street, Los Angeles, California 90013
Curated by Michael Woods

Preview: Thursday, October 12, 7 - 9pm

Opening night reception on Saturday October 14, 2017 6pm - 9pm.
Food and beverages served. Attendance is free.


Alternate Divinations | 4 Short Films by Jesse Russell Brooks

Still image from   Calapesca's Reach (2016)   by Jesse Russell Brooks

Still image from Calapesca's Reach (2016) by Jesse Russell Brooks

Los Angeles, California - Curator and media artist Michael Woods has programmed four films by Jesse Russell Brooks in his vivid and deeply introspective exhibition at The Los Angeles Center for Digital Art. The exhibit is titled "How Analog Impedes, How Digital Infects" and is presented along side solo exhibit "Hail to the Chief" by digital artist Frank Synowicz and a performance/ media installation designed by Woods titled "The Numb Spiral: First Parasitic Event (Building a Wall)". 


How Analog Impedes, How Digital Infects examines how reality may become distorted by mass media and to what degree this distortion affects moral perspective and spiritual development. Woods' installation The Numb Spiral asserts that this distortion often becomes genre and at the very worst develops into lifestyle. Works from digital artists J.E. Sharpe, Victor Acevedo, and Gisela Guzman comment on our culture of mass broadcasting's developing caste system for not only information, but for both analog and digital mediums. Frank Synowicz solo exhibit "Hail to the Chief" presents the portraits of all the Presidents of The USA.  Synowicz "portraits" reveal the influence idealism has on historical viewpoints and contrasts this to society's ability to process opinion.

The films made by Brooks that are on exhibit are Seeing Within (2010), Make Me A Doorway (2012), Colapesce’s Reach (2016), and Driven by Light (2017). The compilation of these four films have been named Alternate Divinations.

Alternate Divinations is a film series that focuses on 4 separated modes of obtaining visual information. Cinema, television, crystal gazing, and the night sky.
— Curator, Michael Woods
Still image from the film   Driven by Li    ght (2017)  by Jesse Russell Brooks. 

Still image from the film Driven by Light (2017) by Jesse Russell Brooks. 

Brooks' films engage media theorist Marshall McLuhan’s assertion that “content of any medium is always another medium”.  Brooks’ hybrid of 8 and 16mm film with Hi8 digital, Mini DV, and a broad range of declining forms of video cassette formats are tightly woven against music and poetry that explore nostalgia, perception, and memory.

The use of symbol within Colapesce’s Reach highlights McLuhan’s radical insight on visual literacy while the closing film Driven by Light spurs the exhibits' theme by suggesting that celestial objects are the catalysts for our civilization's first motion pictures.

From left to right :  Gardenias Garden   by Gisela Guzmán,   Alternate Divinations   by Jesse Russell Brooks , and    Septum Ring Secret   by Michelle Chu .   On display   at the LACDA.  (Photo Credit: Gisela Guzmán)

From left to right: Gardenias Garden by Gisela Guzmán, Alternate Divinations by Jesse Russell Brooks, and Septum Ring Secret by Michelle ChuOn display at the LACDA. (Photo Credit: Gisela Guzmán)

Alternate Divinations will be on display at The Los Angeles Center For Digital Art from January 11, 2018 through February 8, 2017.

Los Angeles Center For Digital Art
104 East 4th Street, Los Angeles, California 90013
Curated by Michael Woods

Preview: Thursday, January 11, 7 - 9pm

Opening night reception on Saturday January 13, 2018 6pm - 9pm.
Food and beverages served. Attendance is free.

MERGED INTO INFINITY | Curated By: Lili White by Jesse Russell Brooks

Production stills  (from left to right)  Ariane Loze's   Les Colombes (2016 ) , Kelly Gallagher's   More Dangerous Than a Thousand Rioters  , Jesse Russell Brooks'   Make Me A Doorway (2012)

Production stills (from left to right) Ariane Loze's Les Colombes (2016), Kelly Gallagher's More Dangerous Than a Thousand Rioters, Jesse Russell Brooks' Make Me A Doorway (2012)

New York, New York - Another Experiment By Women (AXW) has programmed Jesse Russell Brooks' poetry film Make Me a Doorway (2012) with their summer program titled "Merged Into Infinity". Curated by avant-garde filmmaker Lili White, the program presents work from six filmmakers that have utilized the film camera to reveal political, familial, social or body issues that are distinct to women. The majority of themes explored by Another Experiment By Women often go unseen within popular media.

The program runs 45 minutes at the renowned Anthology Film Archives located in Manhattan, New York. Guests will be treated to a selection from the archive that include multi-channelled installations, mixed media presentations, audiovisual compositions and films created on both 8mm and 16mm. In addition to Brooks' piece, the artists and filmmakers featured are Lana Z Caplan, Kelly Gallagher, Louise Harris, Ariane Loze, and Rrose Present.

Still Image from Kelly Gallagher's animated documentary on the life of Lucy Parsons.   MORE DANGEROUS THAN A THOUSAND RIOTERS (2016)

Still Image from Kelly Gallagher's animated documentary on the life of Lucy Parsons.

Another Experiment by Women (AXW) has promoted and screened women’s experimental films for the public since 2010. The presentation of experimental film in general remains invisible to the public and is not usually explored outside of an academic realm. Incorporating underrepresented themes and issues that are particularly unique and experienced by women has made AXW the heart of the woman's experimental film movement in New York. Lili White organizes and presents AXW events and screenings specifically to celebrate experimental work that is created by, on or about women.

Those interested in viewing the films that will be presented in the "Merged Into Infinity" program can download and view the lineup online by visiting AXW/Online.

Still image from the film   MAKE ME A DOORWAY (2012)   by: Jesse Russell Brooks

Still image from the film MAKE ME A DOORWAY (2012) by: Jesse Russell Brooks

Make Me a Doorway (2012) is a poem written by poetess Alexzenia Davis that was developed into a film by Brooks. The film explores gender perspective and intimacy by examining a collection of mixed media footage of three women. Each actress in the film represents a perspective in the memory of both poet and filmmaker while the various mediums presented visualize the passage of time for the viewer.  Davis' writing skillfully combines these perspectives while unerringly depicting the courage required to navigate a volatile gender gap.  The piece features the poetess as well as actress Erika Ewing and Laila Petrone.

Make Me A Doorway (2012) will screen at Anthology Film Archive as part of the "Merged into Infinity" program on August 2, 2017.  Doors will open at 5:30 with a screening time of 6:00pm.

Anthology Film Archive
2nd Avenue & 2nd Street
New York, New York 10003
Curated by Lili White

Food and beverages served. Attendance is $7



Mapping Our Digital Cage by Jesse Russell Brooks

Image from Taly Oehler's ongoing photography series  Digital Cage. 

Image from Taly Oehler's ongoing photography series Digital Cage. 

Los Angeles, California - Visual artist Taly Oehler in collaboration with filmmaker Jesse Russell Brooks have completed a new iteration of images for Oehler's photography series Digital Cage. Partly inspired by Ava Du Vernay’s documentary about incarceration titled 13th; Digital Cage investigates restrictions that facial mapping and data collection may have on our psyche.

The photo series is conceptualized through a collection of portraits that echo the fervor of early 20th century anthropological imagery. Although Oehler’s Digital Cage doesn’t rely on solely physical characteristics as she sets her models apart.  Her team develops an extraordinarily precise digital mask to place upon the face of each model. 

Artistic director Tammy Barack designs these masks in collaboration with the model and photographer to visually represent how we may be “caged” by our electronic society.  The design is achieved by examining biometric points of one's face as a computer would map a facial structure. The points are then adjusted, augmented and re-imagined to reflect the model's technological personality.

Biometric Facial Points. Each point represents a person's unique biological property.

Biometric Facial Points. Each point represents a person's unique biological property.

There are no limits when examining the factors and ideas that influence the creation of an image during the workshop.  Constructive dialogue is greatly encouraged as the production design and the masks are being developed.  Topics such as genealogy, censorship, self-improvement and awareness quickly evolve to include issues such as gentrification, consumerism, and commercialism.

The observations made throughout the discussion are keenly woven into a portrait that may contradict, camouflage, or celebrate the model's self-expressed Digital Cage.  Though, the final images that emerge from the process allows both the model and artist to regain a sense of power over their identity as it is expressed, mapped, and the shared into cyberspace.

Image from Taly Oehler's ongoing photography series  Digital Cage. 

Image from Taly Oehler's ongoing photography series Digital Cage. 

The notes, designs, and expressions that aid the construction of each masks are archived as part of the project.

If you would like to participate or have some insight regarding Digital Cage that you would like to share with the artists please contact Taly Oehler's studio.

For more information on Taly Oehler's and her work as a visual artist please visit:


The Invisible Bully at LACDA by Jesse Russell Brooks

1_The Invisible Bully_Jesse Russell Brooks

Los Angeles, California - During the winter of 2017 filmmaker and media artist Jesse Russell Brooks conducted several stage and experimental video workshops focusing on inner dialogue, rumination and self-criticism. The Invisible Bully is the first installation created from this two week lab.

Inspired by Dutch philosopher and psychologist Hubert Hermans, The Invisible Bully explores a series of performances designed to visualize a theoretic concept known as The Dialogical Self. This theory describes the mind's ability to imagine different positions, and often participants in an internal dialogue that can be productive for some, and negative for others. The video installation juxtaposes demoded and technologically advanced modes of visual, written and oral language along side Hermans' ideas regarding inner dialogue.

The Invisible Bully is a one channel, time based media installation with a duration of 50-minute (on loop). The piece is divided into 3 sections with the first examining self-criticism as inner dialogue. This is followed by a performance exploring rumination and the closing act explores observation.

The project seeks to inspire audiences to observe negative thoughts as one would a calm breeze.
— Jesse Russell Brooks

The concept of self usually refers to something “internal,” something that takes place within the mind of the individual, while dialogue is typically associated with something “external,” that is, processes that take place between people involved in communication. As The Invisible Bully will show, there is not always a sharp separation between the inside of ones self and the external world, but rather a purposeful gradation.

The Invisible Bully will be on display at The Los Angeles Center For Digital Art from April 19, 2017 through May 13, 2017.

Los Angeles Center For Digital Art
104 East 4th Street, Los Angeles, California 90013
Curated by Rex Bruce

Opening night reception on Saturday April 22, 2017 6pm - 9pm.
Food and beverages served. Attendance is Free.

The 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial by Jesse Russell Brooks

Istanbul, Turkey - Artist / architect Cheryl Wing-Zi Wong commissioned filmmaker Jesse Russell Brooks to document her sculpture and public performance designed for The City of Inglewood, California.  The film of Wong's performance is titled "Inglewood Urban Stage: Construction as Performance" . The 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial is the most recent venue to feature their collaborative experimental documentary.

The 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial will explore the relationship between design and human beings. It won't just be a chance to see designers' creativity in action. It is also a place for designers to meet with other artists and thinkers to re-evaluate and revive their craft.

The organizers of this years Istanbul Design Biennial wanted to re-design the very idea of design. More than 70 artists we invited to participate and hundreds of imaginative pieces are on exhibit at the event. The biennial will be the world's largest temporary design laboratory. It’s four weeks of panels and presentations will bring together large teams of expert filmmakers, architects, critics and philosophers.

The theme of The 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial is ARE WE HUMAN: The Design of the Species. American architects Beatriz Colomina and Mark Wigley created the event and believe strongly that we are living with outmoded forms of design and it's time to come up with new ones. They are looking to challenge and accomplish this in four specific areas. These areas are how design relates to the body, the planet, to life and time.

The 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial is opened to the public and is located through out five venues in Istanbul, Turkey.  You will can find Brooks' film 'Inglewood Urbanstage' within the halls of Istanbul's ALT ART SPACE. Address provided below.

Birahane Sokak No: 1
Bomonti, İstanbul
34381 Turkey

Opening hours: 13:00 - 21:00
Tue - Sun

Museums and the Web 2016 by Jesse Russell Brooks

Los Angeles, California  -  Museums and the Web's 2016 convention will present two shows as part of the conference's exhibition initiative. The first exhibit is located at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel Los Angeles in the Tiffany Room and South Foyer.  Featured artists include Andy Lomas, Todd Ingalls, Daniel Leighton, L.A. Art Collective, Tiffany Tranda, Eder Cetina, Victor Soloman, Mary Neubauer,
Adrian Sierra Garcia and Carlos Ulloa.  The work of these artists primarily focus on data driven art that is influenced directly by our forever-shifting environment.

The show is curated by Rex Brucethe director of Los Angeles Center for Digital Art and will run from April 7, 2016 through April 9, 2016. You can register for this event here.

A second exhibit hosted by Museums and the Web 2016 is running almost concurrently at The Los Angeles Center for Digital Art. Scheduling for this event is April 6, 2016 through April 9, 2016. The show is free and open to the public from 12 - 5pm each day.  Curated by Arpad Kovacs of the Getty
and Peter Frank from the Huffington Post, the gallery's headlining show features the work of artist Gary Justis.

LACDA is also presenting TEN ARTISTS TO WATCH 2016, An international group exhibit titled RAW: An exploration of the unframed and the work of video artists Carlos Luna, Jesse Russell Brooks,
Cheryl Wing-Zi Wong, Gregory King and Jennifer Sharpe. These video installations range from sculptural, conceptual and archival.

Museums and the Web is a collaborative space for professionals creating culture, science and heritage on-line, hosted by the Museums and the Web team. Each year MWX hosts a conference that brings together the professionals and explores topics of relevance to museum practitioners working with, affected by, digital media and technology.

Los Angeles Center For Digital Art propagates all forms of digital art as well as the vast panorama of hybrid forms of art and technology that constitute our moment in culture. The center supports local, international, emerging and established artists through exposure in the gallery. There are ongoing scheduled exhibits, events and competitions. The center also produces editions of wide format archival prints and collaborate in the production of digital artworks in it's studios.  The gallery is constantly interacting within the art community and engages often with events and conferences outside of the gallery schedule.

For more information on the Los Angeles Center for Digital Art please call: 323.646.9427



ASSEMBLING IRVING KLAW by Jesse Russell Brooks

Los Angeles, California - Moving images of Bettie Page have been stereoscoped, superimposed, chopped, screwed and then looped by provocateurs and feminists for museums more often than her 16mm prints played on the peep show circuit.  If you would like to fact check this, you are invited to a seemingly innocent cocktail at The Silver Bullet Gallery where the stag films of Irving Klaw will be presented as part of it's inaugural show, The Fetish Factory.  Curator Franceasca Seiden whips this aerodynamic gallery into action as part of Pretty in Plastic's 10th Anniversary celebration on April 2, 2016.

Filmmaker Jesse Russell Brooks was asked to produce an arrangement of Irving Klaw's work to project for the event.  A great deal of the footage pulled for review is housed in the archives of Movie Star News in Las Vegas, Nevada. These archives are not only what remains of Irving Klaw's mail order business that ushered in a new wave of media censorship, they also hold one of the largest and most diverse collections of vintage Hollywood photo and film negatives in the world.  Brooks spent several days hunting for rare and unusual footage authored by Klaw for this event.

I planned to present a Klaw film that could not be found easily on the internet. I quickly discovered that everything he shot with Bettie Page is now ubiquitous in world media.
— Jesse Russell Brooks

There are approximately 6 films created by Irving Klaw that are said to be lost and have yet to resurface.  The 2004 cult classic Bettie Page: Dark Angel made by Dutch underground filmmaker Nico B. "faithfully" recreated these missing stag reels that Page did for Klaw.  What Nico B. used for reference is anyone's guess. So, until experimental filmmakers Jesse Russell Brooks and Nico B. meet up in the same editing room; curators, artists and historians will continue to wait patiently for that one yard sale where the stag film find of the century will take place.  Video projectors and the eyes of gallery goers will then glow with new images to obsess over from Bettie's past.


Pretty in Plastic |  10th Anniversary Art Party
6818 Vineland Ave, North Hollywood, California
The Fetish Factory Curated by Franceasca Seiden
April 2, 2016 From 2pm till 6pm

YLANGYLANG - IN DA ZONE by Jesse Russell Brooks

Montreal, Canada -  YlangYlang, aka Catherine Debard has collaborated with Jesse Russell Brooks to completed a music video for a track titled In Da Zone off the split tape series "Studies In Trance".  An album in which both her work as well as Hazy Montagne Mystique appear.  Both artists are musicians and seasoned arrangers of Trance.  Trance as in "Transcendental", not as in the late 90's house music craze associated with the island of Ibiza. The album was the eleventh volume released on April 15, 2015 on Arachnidiscs Recordings.  Arachnidiscs is a Canadian boutique label that has been successfully releasing drone, chant, outsider & "Music for and by Weirdo's" since 1999.  The creation of this late music video release was done in part by label owner Jakob Rehlinger. Brooks submitted his portfolio to Rehlinger with an interest in developing visuals for another artist.  In Da Zone was emailed over to Brooks as a more specific suggestion.  Rehlinger's intuition was more than accurate.

"I am interested in shooting projects based on how I feel rather than what I know and I think Jakob sensed that from the start. YlangYlang's work is based on that principle."                                                                                                                                                                         -Jesse Russell Brooks

In Da Zone is likely not the last video collaboration from the two artists. Jesse Russell Brooks continues to develop both music video work and live broadcast videos for Arachnidiscs. YlangYlang has since released several new projects garnering reviews from Exclaim!Decoder Magazine.  

Watch the music video here: YlangYlang: In Da Zone

Studies In Trance: Vol. 11 is available on Arachnidiscs Recordings - Hazy Montagne Mystique: analog synths, destruction of moog, temple volant (54M1) recorded at l’app of love / jeunesse cosmique.
YlangYlang: Enregistré sur 4-track, hiver 2015