Nancy Holt 1938-2014
Underscan (1974)
1974 | 00:09:20 | United States | English | B&W | Mono | 4:3 | Video

Holt's terrain is her Aunt Ethel's home in New Bedford, Massachusetts, presented in still images and excerpts from letters to the artist from her aunt. Holt pays particular attention to her aunt's poignant story of aging, altering the images by "underscanning" them—a technical process that compresses the edges of the video image—building an intrinsic limitation into the tape: the compression of time and personal history represented by the images and narrative. This process echoes Holt's reading, slightly distorting and compressing the information in the letters as she presents them.