media burn / ant farm. 1975

“Media Burn” by Ant Farm. Excerpt from Ant Farm’s classic video art piece examining and satirizing the media, particularly the impact of television. On July 4, 1975, what a TV newscaster described as a “media circus” assembles at San Francisco’s Cow Palace Stadium. A pyramid of television sets are stacked, dowsed with kerosene, and set ablaze. Then a modified 1959 Cadillac El Dorado Biarritz, piloted by two drivers who are guided only by a video monitor between their bucket seats, crashes through the pyramid destroying the TV sets.

ARTIST: Ant Farm NATIONALITY: United States DATE_OF_WORK: c. 1976–2004 MATERIALS: offset printing on paper DIMENSIONS: sheet: 11 x 8 1/2 in. CREDIT_LINE: University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive; Purchase made possible through a bequest of Thérèse Bonney by exchange, a partial gift of Chip Lord and Curtis Schreier and gifts from an anonymous donor and Harrison Fraker