Tag Archives: 1960s

March 2014: Videofreex go to Washington

A picture of my dad, Chuck Kennedy, throwing snowballs in Lanesville, NY, circa 1970. Gotta love the snow suit.

My dad, Chuck Kennedy, plays in the snow in Lanesville, NY, some time in the 1970s. Gotta love the snow suit. Photo courtesy of Bart Friedman.

No one knows whether springy or snowy weather will greet these events, but I look forward to going. Cross posted from Videofreex.com.

Videofreex and friends are coming to Washington, D.C. in March. Join us for two events.

1) On Sunday, March 9, the National Gallery of Art will host a screening of Videofreex material and a talk by Videofreex members Skip Blumberg and Parry Teasdale, along with Tom Colley of Video Data Bank.

Early Video Pioneers: Videofreex with Portapaks

Sunday, March 9, 4:00
 p.m.

East Building Auditorium, National Gallery of Art

6th St. and Constitution Ave. NW, Washington, DC

FREE

2) The next day, the work of the Videofreex and their contemporaries comes to the DC Arts Center. The event will debut a new edit of the compilation Videofreex Pirate TV Show and feature video from the landmark May Day protest of 1971.

Videofreex and the May Day Video Collective at DCAC (Facebook event)

Monday, March 10, 7:30 p.m.

DC Arts Center, 2438 18th St. NW,  Washington, DC

Tickets: $8    Ticket reservations: 202-462-7833

After party to follow nearby. Contact us for information.

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Discerning the Videofreex

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A woman with an automatic rifle was one of the images in a Videofreex screening held in Washington, D.C. in January 2011. Photo by Rhea.

The package came a couple of months ago. It contained a free copy of Nancy Cain’s Video Days: And what we saw though the viewfinder. The author had signed the title page, “To Rhea with love. (Videofreex: the next generation)”

I tucked into the book eager to learn more about my father’s life before I existed, hoping to understand more now that he’s gone. I found something unexpected.

Video Days chronicles Nancy’s adventures beginning in the era of 30-pound cameras that democratized the art. It continues until 1996, a few years short of the one-handed Flip Cam era. During the social revolution that straddled the late ’60s and early ’70s, the young Nancy runs off to join the New York video-making collective known as the Videofreex. There, she works alongside my dad, Chuck Kennedy. They all live in a rambling former boarding house in Lanesville, N.Y.

Somewhere in this Freex section, I hit a passage that struck me as familiar:

Chuck was born in the Bronx and spent a large part of his youth in a Catholic orphanage. At a certain point, he was given the choice between reform school or the Army, so he joined up. In the Army, Chuck learned electronics and saw the world. Continue reading

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Filed under Community of writers, DC, Other arts