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The overall importance of the VJ presence.

Discussion in 'The Business Side' started by peet, Dec 15, 2003.

  1. peet

    peet New Member

    I was thinking. How important is the presence of visuals and a VJ really to the audience? And how important is the artform itself to the people? I notice the feeling with a lot of vj artists is that they over-qualify their importance to a party. I see visuals as an addition to the overall experience and ambience I get at a party.

    But do I really miss 'm when they're gone? Don't think so.

    You can't remove a DJ from a party and keep a party, the pleasure will go down when you stop selling drinks at the bar, but will the party go down when the VJ stops?

    No.

    So how should I see the importance of VJs?

    DISCUSS!
  2. Lucidhouse

    Lucidhouse :::*:::

    Hi Peet,
    I agree with you..the party will not stop if mr veejay doesnt perform. This might sound blasphamous, but I think that you can remove the DJ and still have a hot party, just have a good pre-recorded mix...can anyone tell the difference?

    I look at it simply... good reactive visuals will amplify the overall mood, even make the music sound a little better, that's why most music videos have large budgets and sexy provocative girls with shit voices that become megastars. Seems to me that visuals are an integral part of music, why should it be any different in clubs?
  3. Anyone

    Anyone New Member

    it`s a bit like asking if we can go back to being virgins
    once we`ve had intercourse...

    people were living perfectly fullfilling lives before the internet,
    but try now to take it away and they will feel great withdrawal

    people were living perfectly fullfilling lives before electricity,
    but try now to take it away and they will feel great withdrawal

    people were living perfectly fullfilling lives before the invention of writing,
    but try now to take it away and they will feel great withdrawal

    the same goes with VJing.
    people were having great nights out
    before VJing became part of their clubbing experience,
    but try now to take it away and they will feel great withdrawal

    ne1
  4. videoteque

    videoteque New Member

    Well, it depends. In a place with a lot of big screens and beautiful visuals, they will miss them a lot. In a place with the odd and old projector and downloaded content in Resolume Chaos mode: who will miss it??

    Our work is to make them MISS the visuals!!! So there will be visuals everywhere...
  5. oxygen

    oxygen V i d e o l o g y

    offcourse vj's will tell they are most important for a party.
    i guess there is a logic and a commercial reason for that.
    in a world where the image has become our most important aspect of communication, understanding and relaxing i can agree with that.

    at the same time the visual is an artform and therefore will always be secondary in a commercial and public space like a club.
  6. Rovastar

    Rovastar /..\

    I don't beleive even the most egotistical of us think that we make the night.

    well maybe 2012FX.... lol :) :D
  7. holly

    holly WetCircuit.com

    well, that was a short debate.
  8. peet

    peet New Member

    I can understand well what you mean, but still I think visual art will always stay inferior to e.g. music. It's not something as common as electricity. It takes time to depthen in to. If you know what I mean.
    The whole reason for this is that it's simply (at least for the overall audience) easier to enjoy music than to enjoy visual art or 'a vj perfomance'. You can't go say this is the cause of the disknowledge or unrecognision of visual art with the audience; it's just that music is an integral part of the human itself. On first sight visual art is not.

    I'm questioning if there's already a so-called 'quality standard' set in visual art, at least for the audience. Will the overall audience care if there will be less cool stuff on the video wall. ('less cool' in the mouth of a visual expert with a trained eye for visual art?). Most people won't care. They are satisfied quite easy. Maybe this is just because it's such a young artform.

    Well...maybe it will just take some time to let the VJ artform spread around the world and to make it internationally a definite part of the whole club and concert experience.

    Off-topic; It may seem so, but I didn't came here to go and attack the VJ artform. I just want to debate about the importance of visual art.
  9. holly

    holly WetCircuit.com

    As NE1 has said in a previous thread: VJ and Video Art are not the same thing.

    In a club setting video is complimenting and competing with hundreds of other visual stimuli (lighting, architecture, fashion, and the people themselves) as it should be. In a club, music dominates because it is the only constant in a sea of overstimulation.

    In a gallery, video can be the most demanding and complex focus in the space becoming at once environment, time, mood, motion, etc..., creating a fully immersive experience. If you insist on confusing the two, or treating them as interchangable, you will never realize the full power at hand.

    Plenty of people here are VJs without ever touching the art world. As a video artist AND a VJ, I try to understand the difference and create accordingly. I do not believe that the club environment is the proper place to showcase what I would call "art". Clubs are for entertainment. Why would you take anything seriously that you encountered in a disco?

    This isn't to poop on the VJ, but I wouldn't try to elevate the power of one bartender, or one gogo-dancer, or any other seperate element of clubland to any level of superceeding importance..., not even a DJ.

    I completely disagree. An appreciation of music must be developed just as an appreciation of visual art must be developed. Studies have shown that a newborn baby can recognize and respond to a human face within hours of birth. Certain visual stimuli is primal, probably more so than sound.
  10. cat

    cat Senior Moments

    "I completely disagree. An appreciation of music must be developed just as an appreciation of visual art must be developed. Studies have shown that a newborn baby can recognize and respond to a human face within hours of birth. Certain visual stimuli is primal, probably more so than sound."

    Ahh but a baby has been listening to the heat beat since it grows ears, so i think hearing comes first! the heart beat being the one conection between body and dance and music. 120bpm for disco has a reason!
    I see video as another layer in production, in a way it is icing on the cake, you dont have to have icing but it adds to the whole experience of a cake. I wouldnt eat xmas cake if it didnt have icing on it! mmmmm sugar......
    As I also do lighting I see the contection between lighting and music as being quite close, limited number of colours/ number of notes, and between video and words/lyrics, stories or images that capture your imagination.
    There should also be a connection between lighting and video, when there is you get transported into another enviroment that is completely at odds with the enviroment that is the venue with the lights on!
    When music/lights/video and sets all connect and draw from the same emotions they amplify each other more than simply add to each other. When they dont its just eyecandy, something to watch while your drinking!
    Personally I find visuals to be distracting if your socialising, I just cant stop watching them, but I'm a self confessed visual junky just trying to find that vein I can still get the needle in! Really if your going out dancing you should be looking at people not TV subsitutes! Bands/live acts however is a different story, your meant to be watching them so if theres something there for when you get bored of looking at the top of their heads and that gleaming apple logo.
    This is why IMHO electroinic music needs visuals more, lack of lyrics means meanings can be invoked through the use of visuals. When you work with lyric based music it becomes more challenging to do visuals for as there is already meaning there, so it limits the direction you can take (or gives you an avenue to explore, I nearly always end up doing new work for lyric based music)
    Thats my tuppence
    Cat
  11. oxygen

    oxygen V i d e o l o g y

    hmm holy,
    what you are saying is that when u project
    a video in a club it's not art
    and when u place it in a museum it is???
  12. holly

    holly WetCircuit.com

    No way, Oxy. The complete opposite!!

    I'm saying that the content I'd create for a museum is not at all like the content I'd create for a club! WHERE it's projected changes my intent and workstyle. I'm saying I wouldn't waste my serious art on a club, and I wouldn't be half as giddy in a gallery! There's a big difference in the energy of a party and the energy of a gallery!

    In a museum I would expect people to sit and watch a bit. I would explore some deeper themes and basically expect a viewer to have a longer attention span so I could really hope to take them on a cerebrial journey somewhere intimate and personal. A thinking place....

    In the clubs I totally design my images to go along with the THUMP THUMP THUMP of dance music - easy obvious themes and high-energy graphics. Things that make you want to move and dance. They generally don't play pumpin' house tracks at yer finer galleries around town.

    I make the distinction between art and entertainment. I don't pass a value judgement on either one, but obviously I plan for the environment in which my work will be experienced! Don't you?
  13. charlielangridge

    charlielangridge www.rho-d.co.uk

    Maybe when a magic stimuli - like the 120 bpm, is found for visuals, things might change, but for now in a club situ, the music takes presidence, ....for now....
  14. oxygen

    oxygen V i d e o l o g y

    holly ,
    ok i see your point, and YES, there is a differende as you say...
    but....
    I don't think there should be 'necesarelly' made a distiction in the approach of how you create or present your work for both places.
    in fact, making those interchangable might leed to surprisingly good and more interesting results.
    As ppl expect entertainment (eyecandy) in a club and more serious dedicated art in galleries I find it most challenging to play with those expectations.
    I think it's very important to make pple react on art and vj-ing in general .
    Not to make them bored because of the idea that
    something doesn't belong on a certain place.
    I have made installations and images for purposes in galleries, same
    time i have shown them on occasions in clubs.
    I am not saying it will always work, but thats what you're an artist for....
    (to make it work or adjust it to make it work).
    Few years ago there was a dutch museum wanted to have a modern "imago"
    and made an exhibition with videoclips and vj art. It was totally bollocks.
    But that was because they're idea of showing video/vj art inbetween some old paintings was too simplistic.
  15. peet

    peet New Member

    Maybe I wrongly phrased what I wanted to say but what I mean is;. visual art AND vj as art will ALWAYS stay inferior for the OVERALL audience. Ofcourse if I watch visual art, I qualify it as just as important to me as music or other artforms. But that's because I'm interested in it and have depthened it to it. Most people are not. If you would sell CDs with video art on them in a store, some might buy 'm but they wouldn't be sold as good as music CDs would. It's not as common as music. That's what I mean.

    And it again totally depends who you are. I love watching art. I love watching visual video art, graphical visual art. If I go to the movies I most of the time choose for an arthouse film. I'm interested and I enjoy it. But does the rest of the world? No.

    That's what I mean.
  16. asterix

    asterix IMAGINEER

    Peet - you're a lunatic!

    - More people go to cinema's than dance parties - I think music's already fairly weighted against a visual experience. On that note - why is music used in cinematography? (Thats a rhetorical question)

    - For FUN , would you rather eat a bowl of icecream - or some festive bowl of chocaholic cocktail from a upmarket gelateria with all the trimmings? Delish! Apply to your nighclub.

    - People are 80% visual beings. We catalogue emotionally, and remember visually more often. Ask anyone how their weekend was - I bet they'll tell ya what they saw

    - I go out soley for stimulation (and fun). The more stimulation - the better bang for my buck I reckon.

    - Take away all the elements in a nightclub aside from music. People, lights, visuals, alcohol... sounds like vanilla icecream to me
  17. oxygen

    oxygen V i d e o l o g y

    The visual is a product of the commercial and technical world we live in today.
    since music has become commercial the visual has followed .
    And even better, the visual has been (and still is) evolving as an artform because our way of life and perception has radically changed since MTV, internet and the pc. The thing is with visuals...they make us believe(in an illusion) or can make us see the world from a different point of view.
    Now, 'art' is a kind of sophisticated subject, not all humans are interested in.
    The discussion wether visuals are art yes or no, is interesting but not worth fighting for. As long as visuals 'can' be art is what matters.
    Wether music or visual is more important all depends in what context u place them and wether you are willing to accept there is a lot of crap in this world and there is a lot of great creative spirit too. u do the match.
  18. spaceman

    spaceman Member

    Visuals are always part of music otherwize why would "rock" bands bother looking so cool: Take Kiss for example, having smoke coming out of a guitar during a solo doesn't help making it sound any better but LOOKS sooo cool. If britney was short fat and ugly would she be so popular? Musicians always have been a VISUAL pleasure untill d.j.s came along.... How exciting is it to stare at some average looking block looking down at turntables, holding a pair of headphone to one ear!

    This is exactly why I got into V.J.ing; coming from a music background (was playing in a punk band for 10 years), when I got into the whole party scene, althu i loved the music i really missed the show.
    I think that v.j.s are actualy the new "Rock Stars", they provide the visual element to an otherwize incomplete show.

    As for quality, it is obvious that some v.j. acts are more entertaining than others, you can't set a standard on quality, it's not like we're manufacturing car and have to conform to European Safety Regulations. This is art.

    "visual art AND vj as art will ALWAYS stay inferior for the OVERALL audience. " is like saying "we're doing just fine with black and white T.V. why do we need colors"


    .A movie without music is just as incomplete as a party without visuals.
  19. julez

    julez Syn.thesia Visuals

    I think charlie said it best

    "VJs...saving your eyes from ugly djs for twenty years"

    :D

    I agree with u 100% oxygen. Who goes to the cinema to hear great music?? maybe a movie has a great soundtrack but like a vj in a club it only compliments the movie/dj
  20. eXhale

    eXhale video magician

    how pretentious and elitist... :rolleyes: art should touch the heart, not the mind. if someone need to have studied 4 years at an art school to "understand" your visuals, maybe you're doing something wrong.
  21. spaceman

    spaceman Member

    "I agree with u 100% oxygen. Who goes to the cinema to hear great music?? maybe a movie has a great soundtrack but like a vj in a club it only compliments the movie/dj"
    That's not the point - who wants to see a movie without a soundtrack......
  22. julez

    julez Syn.thesia Visuals

    ever heard of Dogme 95??

    my point was that soundtracks compliment movies...and btw i dislike going to clubs without visuals
  23. ristuuk

    ristuuk Member

    less than a hundred years ago everyone watched movies without soundtracks...then the organ accompanied....then came the soundtrack.
    What went wrong??!
  24. Anyone

    Anyone New Member

    if the visual element of music is so unimportant,

    how come every single signed artist in the world makes a promo video for every single track released?

    how come top manufacturers like edirol, pioneer and Korg have all produced hardware specifically for the VJ n mind?

    if visuals in general are so unimportant,

    why have films like The Matrix completely left behind any worries of script writing and invested millions in GCI and live effect as the main selling point of their movie?

    I`m telling you, visuals are alive and well,
    they`re just evolving at different speeds and different directions in different parts of the world...

    seing the importance of VJing has a lot to do with being at the right time at the right place....

    ne1
  25. Lucidhouse

    Lucidhouse :::*:::

    Theres no doubt that visuals are an integral part of music.

    My corcern aboute the whole veejay thing is that most of the stuff thats out there (glorified lightshow) could easely be replaced and surpased by an aotomated system. ie: randomly sound trigered visuals. Why pay someone to twidle a few knobs when a machine full of good content could do it better?

    A veejay is up against so much ...

    *competing for a slice of the cake with over payed overrated DJ's (they've cornered the market and are'nt gona give away their limelite and profits that easely)

    *capturing of the eyeballs. People have been brought up with slick, highly produced visuals from movies to adverts, pop vids, games... how interested or chalanged are they gonna be if a veejay performance does'nt live up to these high standards? (gray and brown muck and kalidascopic effects just wont do)
  26. littlecatalyst

    littlecatalyst Retireded

    i think what ur describing is a slave to a superior medium. which i don't agree, i can think of two recent films that would not have had nearly half of the vibe if they had some "compliment" type soundtrack-- one is Clint Mansel & Kronos' soundtrack on Requiem for a Dream (that score moeved the story, the themes were elemental in their influence on the storytelling as well as teh narrative structure) and "Fast Cheap and Out of Controll" a film about a lion tamer, teh leading expert on blind mole rats and a topiary gardener (the guys who sculpt animals out of shrubbery) there is no way that the story would have held together (no story actually, it was a documentary of sorts) if it werent for the soundtrack. Then you have something liek teh amazing La Jette, by chris marker which aside form dialogue narration has no soundtrack and people have been lovong that film for what, 30 years?

    i simply don't agree. sure, if its a lame soundrack and a movie with megastas, then the soundtrack can be what you describe, but since when do we look at the lowest common denominator to see what we are looking at?

    what is the question here? cause it seems like we will be as important as we want to be. for me, its kinda funny cause we're in (sorry for analogyland but here we go) the Model-T years right now, and maybe we still have to deal with slipping on horseshit on thw streets, or sharing the road with a horse and cart, but arguing whether the car and highway will ever be as important as the steamship seems to me to be downright silly. what i'm trying to say is that we are going to see so many new venues for our craft (be it art, in clubs, advertising, plasma towers, billboards et cetera-- not to mention pirate broadcasts and smuggled-in videohacktivism....) that i hardly think taking stock right now with only the present experiences as a compass will only leave us with anything but the sentiments that we may/may not be useless..... the 21st century has begun, what other medium do you know of that best suits these new times?

    even though i gotta say that i do go to parties without visuals, sometimes there's a dj i love, or some really great people are throwing a party and i want to be with my friends, regarless of visuals.... and you knwo what? when i am not stressing about a set, or watching the other vjs and looking at what they're doing, it's fun, not work, and having fun is still supposedto be a part of it
  27. peet

    peet New Member

    I definitely didn't mean to sound pretentious. And I'm also not talking about cinema etc. but solely about video art. I just mean to say that not a lot of people (as an example i mentioned before) will i.e. buy a cd with video art on it. At least not as many as people who buy music cd's. In that account, (most) people will always go to a party for the music and not in special for the visuals. At least not in current time.

    I wrongly phrased some posts before. And to rectify: I mean that video art and especially video art in i.e. a club is inferior to the music playing there.

    I'm sorry if you guys didn't understandly what I was saying or if I wasn't clear enough.
  28. eXhale

    eXhale video magician

    sorry peet, i got a bit carried away. anyway:
    is it the "fault" of the people who are not visually aware enough or is it only because the visuals are boring? wallpaper visuals just don't do the trick, no matter how refined the audience is. we live in a visual culture... maybe lucidhouse is on something regarding the competition with slick advertisements (including MTV video clips), although i think that ads work in an extremely limited framework (ie. selling a product) and there is so much more which can be done.

    and lilcat-- funny i was also thinking about 'requiem for a dream' when people mentionned soundtracks... i don't think the movie would be half as disturbing without the music. :scared: :eek:
  29. Anyone

    Anyone New Member

    truely timeless classical Art touches every major organ,
    including the heart, mind, guts and balls

    ne1
  30. holly

    holly WetCircuit.com

    Oli!
    :yep:

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