What is graff video :

The "graff video" is a new form of video art. The camera is handled as a spray paint can with light as pictorial material. Depending on the movements that you do with the video camera, you get different results. The camera can be agitated with very quick movements to obtain continuous luminous traces, or it may be jiggled in fits and starts to obtain matter effects or light ambiances. You can also use the zoom movement on a bright fixed spot, or you can face to illuminated sources in motion.
The term "graff video" describes both the practice and the result produced by this practice.

A brief story :

I realized a lot of "classic" graff with spray paint in the 80s. Since the early 90s, I did experiments the treatment of light in the video. In parallel, I developed the concept of "image substance" ("matière d'image"), an abstraction of the content to retain only the image itself, the video image as pictorial material. This "image substance" can then be re-used or processed in the same way that we painted with pigments.
As a continuation of these experiences I created this concept of graff video in the early 2000s. This is a case of use of "image substance", as a source of graphical compositions. With a parallel between the handling of the video camera and the spray painting.

A practice improvised and spontaneous :

Personally, I prefer a direct and instinctive creation, according to the general atmosphere, situations encountered, sound environment, and light of course. I do not know what will happen in advance, I can control neither the environment nor the situation. It's pure improvisation in the sense that I don't control lights (I don't come with my lights that I would install in place in advance) and that I don't know what will happen (the future sequence of events). The improvisation is made as it goes along. The recordings are taken directly, without editing or post-prod effect.
Beyond the images, videos are also witnesses of past moments, moments of life, and of the performances.
It's nice to share my creations with others (hence putting them online), to propose new forms of images, and receive feedback from viewers. But I also live the creative acts as moments of personal pleasure, and moments of surprise with new images generated. I sometimes not activate the recording, and simply look, through the screen of the video camera, the sequences of graff video performed live.

The graff video, a total art :

The graff video is at the crossroads of several domains of art :

  • the graphics, with features and shapes that are emerging. With the opportunity to obtain graffs in 3D, with immersion in space (you can move yourself around and inside the lights);
  • the music and sound, that interact with the images, sometimes at the origin of movements (impetuses given to camera movements), sometimes stressing or accompanying images (dialogue between image and sound, on the variations and composition);
  • the dance, with the gestures, the handling of the camera, the positions and movements in the universe filmed. To point out, the importance of the gesture, the movement is involved in the establishment of form, particularly with the phenomenon of persistence of light;
  • the digital arts, with the interactive process, the virtual signs, and the augmented reality in some cases (superpositions of graffs over "normal" images);
  • the show (in case of performances in front of a public);
  • and of course, the art video, and the vjing (in case of a live projection).

It is also a very playful art in practice (a game with the video camera, a game with the images, a game with the situations).

The graff video, a new way and a new practice of graff :

It's close, in many respects, to "classic" graff. The "tag video" (one form of graff video) is an extension of classic tag, Both tag as a spontaneous drawing, but also as a symbol (for example with my series of tags videos on chandeliers, symbol of luxury and academicism). There is also the concept of covering graff (when I coat an object or a situation with a graff video). And also for connoisseurs, the noise of the video camera shaken makes one think of a spray-can :)
However, the graff video is distinguished by the fact that it is generated with light instead of paint, and that it is somehow virtual : it can be seen everywhere by the tools of digital networking without a trace in the physical space. It offers another look on the reality, both in composition and improvised screenwriting. Beyond the medium and support, a major difference lies in the fact that this is a movie and not a fixed image, with a continuous flow whose sequence can be reviewed as many times as you want.
In fact, the graff video has positioned itself as a variant of "classic" graff. In the same manner as "light graff" (graff with photo cameras) or as "projection bombing" (graff projected on buildings), it enables to explore new territories of images and sensations, for both spectators and those who practice it.