Category: Video

The End: Vis-à-Vis Society Exhibition at V2

Vis-à-Vis Society (lead by Drs. Ink and Owning, a.k.a. Sierra Nelson and Rachel Kessler) will be showing “The End,” a selection of their interactive installations and video works spanning over a decade, at Velocity’s V2 art space for its final month of exhibitions and events.

Stop by the OPENING PARTY DECEMBER 8th (Capitol Hill 2nd Thurs Art Walk), 5:00-8:00 p.m. at V2. when the Vis-à-Vis Society will be performing and facilitating interaction with their work throughout the evening.

The exhibition opening will be followed by a Feelings Open Mic at V2 hosted by Velocity, with brief audience-interactive poem intro by Vis-à-Vis Society. (Feelings Open Mic sign-up starts 5:00 p.m., first come first serve; feelings soapbox begin 8:00 p.m.) For more info:

LOCATION: Velocity: V2, 1525 11th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122 (in the Old Value Village)
EXHIBITION: December 1—December 17, 2016
OPENING PARTY: 2nd Thursday, December 8, 5-8 pm (Feelings Open Mic 8-9 pm)
GALLERY HOURS: Wed—Fri 12-2 pm (and by appointment)
SPECIAL WEEKEND HOURS: Sunday, Dec. 4 and Dec. 11, 2-6 pm
2ND PARTY: Saturday, December 10, 9:30 pm-12:00 am (“Last Dance” V2 closing party, $5 cover charge)

This exhibition is concurrent with the “American Painting Today” exhibition at V2, organized by Matthew Offenbacher, showcasing an encyclopedic collection of paintings by artists from the greater Seattle area. For more info: and

V2 is an initiative of the Capitol Hill Arts District, managed by Velocity Dance Center, in partnership with One Reel. It is a temporary collaborative arts space in Capitol Hill’s old Value Village, providing 30,000 square feet of arts space for community rental for artists and art organizations, as well as a gathering place for events, exhibitions, rehearsals, artist residencies, performances and community forums. Sadly, V2 will come to a close at the end of December. All are invited back to the closing party on December 10th to celebrate again these exhibitions and V2 itself.

Vis-a-Vis Society’s NEW video poem an homage to Spaghetti Westerns and Sergio Leone

You can watch an excerpt of “The End” here.IMG_8670.jpg

The Vis-a-Vis Society teamed up with Britta Johnson and drove out to the desert last summer to shoot some Spaghetti Western, Sergio-Leone-esque choreography experiments, when the forest fires leaped over I-90, forcing us to re-route to Umtanum. We drove and drove, topped off the hot engine’s oil, until we found this remote site, strewn with bullet casings and shattered glass, just like T.S. Eliot described it in “The Wasteland,”

where the sun beats,
And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief,
And the dry stone no sound of water. Only
There is shadow under this red rock,
(Come in under the shadow of this red rock),
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
Dr. Ink, in the late stages of pregnancy, and Dr. Owning chomping on a cigar for the first time, donned their labcoats and white pumps, strapped on holsters and vintage Buck Rogers laser guns (thanks to the extraordinary Webster Crowell), and proceeded to conduct a series of movements testing theories on how to end.
IMG_8694.jpgAfter discovering 1,000 ways to end, and recording the results in Dr. Owning’s dad’s home laboratory, Ms. Johnson edited an incredible 23-minute video piece of this investigation. It premiered at the final installation of NEPO 5K “Don’t Run” in our “Registration” piece. This instructional video demonstrated ways to end as participants registered by selecting a race bib printed with an ending phrase. Photos below by Megumi Shawna Arai and Makenzie Stone.
You can watch an excerpt of “The End” .
Watch an excerpt of “The End” here.
We loved watching found poems form throughout the 5 kilometer art walk.

This young art walker loved the part where we fell down



This video by the Vis-a-Vis Society debuted at the NEPO 5K Don’t Run on September 8th, 2012. It was created by Drs. Ink and Owning as an instructional demonstration for DOWN + HILL to encourage participants at the event.

At the start of the 5K course, participants checked in with the Vis-a-Vis Society to select one (1) unique verb for Going Down from a list of 580 verbs and phrases generated in the Vis-a-Vis Society laboratory. After selecting a unique verb, the participant then pinned the word onto his/her front or back for the duration of the 5K experience; each participant was also asked to demonstrate in some physical manner, at least once but preferably multiple times, the selected verb while on the course. The 2012 NEPO 5K Don’t Run traversed from Beacon Hill down to the International District in Seattle, beginning under a large banner created by the Vis-a-Vis Society which read: IT’S ALL DOWNHILL FROM HERE.

* Video Credits*
Scientists: Drs. Ink & Owning (a.k.a. Sierra Nelson and Rachel Kessler).
Intrepid Cameraperson for “Hill” sections: Britta Johnson.
Music: Kent Kessler.
Dog: Smudge.