With Tate’s Glam! looking at pop style in the early 70s (February next year) and now this new exhibition celebrating the The Art of Pop Video at FACT, next year’s looking pretty good already.

In The Art of Pop, opening in March 2013, more than 70 video clips will tell the story of the pop video, marking the medium’s substantial contribution to popular culture.

From early Fred Astaire shorts to big-budget MTV mini-epics, the exhibition aims to offer a greatest hits of this most powerful of musical unit-shifters, as well as celebrating the art and technology that lies behind the drowning Simon Le Bon, the robot-challenging Beastie Boys, or the bootyliciousing Beyonce.

Artists featured include Björk, Michael Jackson, Pet Shop Boys, Fred Astaire, Man Ray, Madonna, Daft Punk, Lady Gaga and Radiohead.

Directors featured include Michel Gondry, Spike Jonze, Dudley Murphy, Anton Corbijn, Andy Warhol, Uwe Flade, Julien Temple, Wim Wenders and Chris Cunningham. With a list like this our only hope is that the curators haven’t skewed it too much into the present, in the hope of grabbing the attention of the kids, as is the case in a lot of so called ‘retrospectives’. There is a much more interesting story to be told about the artform’s earlier days – and its pioneers, such as Russell Mulcahy and Sweden’s Lasse Halstrom, who both went on to Hollywood success. But we’ll reserve our judgement.

The exhibition showcases the work of major visual artists whose work has been heavily influenced by the pop video. Artists featured include Andy Warhol, Pipilotti Rist, Wolfgang Tillmans, Bruce Conner, Carsten Nicolai and Christian Jankows.

We can’t wait. And we can’t wait for the arguments that, inevitably, will follow in its wake. “What? No Sledgehammer…” etc etc.

The Art of Pop
Wood Street

Exhibition runs from 14 March – 26 May 20

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