Australian Video Art Archive

Eva Schramm and Gary Willis


Holy Word

00:04:07 1980

Holy Word sets up a semiotic slide, between image and text, between a kiss and a poem. It features an original score by Warren Burt. It was one of a series of six videos produced by Robert Randall and Frank Bendinelli (Randelli) ‘Video as Art’ which was based on 20th century modernist artists such as Marinetti, Magritte, Malevich.

The ‘Video as Art’ series was widely exhibited, both locally and internationally, in its time; beginning in 1981 with the Video Plus Group, Melbourne, Australian Perspecta, AGNSW; 1982 Sydney Biennale etc.

Although originally Schramm and Willis were invited to produce a work based on the erotic drawings of Brett Whitely, they elected to a produce a work based on their own aesthetics. In Holy Word the viewer observes the artists in an embrace through a scrolling text-based poem, which was marked in electrical tape on vynyl sheeting and chromakeyed across the video image. Its visual aesthetic sits within the context of Eva’s ‘Notches on my Gun’ series and Gary’s ‘The Five Senses’ series of the same period. (See Feel Like Target, National Gallery of Victoria, and Lone Tone, National Gallery of Australia).

This work was produced by Randelli with funding from the Australian Film Commission.

DVD available