Video Portrait of Selden

A video portrait of Selden featuring hands as they play an organ's keys, an apartment interior and text written over top
Portrait of Selden, Video Still I

A video portrait by Lincoln Schatz, Portrait of Selden, is a new-media portrait of an art student living in Chicago. By breaking away from traditional modes of portraiture, Lincoln Schatz produces a video composite of the individual. Here, we see Selden, immersed in the day-to-day.

This video portrait by Lincoln Schatz began with filming Selden over the course of a day. Filming with two HD cameras on wearable mobile rigs, Schatz and a production team spent the day tracing the artist’s footsteps. Additionally, Schatz’s team used more experimental methods to capture action footage on the streets of Chicago.

Filming sites for the project included the surrounding neighborhoods, her home and the roof above her apartment. The roof, a site for art installations, allows for Selden to explore projects as cameras recorded. As a result, Selden’s temporary interventions in this space become surreal cut-outs in the final video work. Displaying a slice of her life against the backdrop of the Chicago skyline. All of this various footage comes together to create a video portrait.

A Video Portrait of Selden features layers of images of the subject outside, riding a bike, walking on the street and reading
Portrait of Selden, Video Still II

Portrait of Selden opens up questions of what portraiture can be when created using new media technologies. Building on the ideas first explored in Cluster, Portrait of Selden pushes these initial ideas of chance even further. This work of video art, like many of Schatz’s projects, involves the use of computers, chance and algorithms to create a system that the video files are processed through. Each time the artwork is turned on, a new video is created in real time. Software designed by Schatz in studio, creates a non-looping, non-narrative video artwork that is constantly evolving and changing over time. As a result, this video portrait by Lincoln Schatz evades the tropes of narrative video and film.