|Note: If you see this text you use a browser which does not support usual Web-standards. Therefore the design of Media Art Net will not display correctly. Contents are nevertheless provided. For greatest possible comfort and full functionality you should use one of the recommended browsers.|
Gerry Schum combined the roles of mediator between the television institution and the artists, of curator of the programme, and of producer. His antenna for developments in contemporary art unfailingly brought his attention to the major artists of the period. The pieces produced with Schum were for many of them the first forays into filming for TV – and few of these artists continued to work in film or video after Schum's premature death. Schum wanted to use TV as a direct artistic medium, wanted the broadcasts to be works of art as opposed to mere reports on art. For that reason, he refused to comply with the requests for commentated broadcasts put to him by the TV stations after the initial transmission: 'During all the 38 minutes of the Land Art show there is no word spoken. No explanation. I think an art object realized in regard of the medium TV does not need a spoken explanation.' This conviction was one reason his hopes of establishing the broadcast on a permanent basis were not to be fulfilled. In 1971, Schum opened a video gallery in Düsseldorf which marketed art films and videotapes as edition copies, and developed a concept for a video section in the Folkwang Museum, Essen. Neither project met with the anticipated success. The death of Schum at a young age deprived video art of one of its foremost communicators.