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by Robert Rodger
‘Every letter I write is not a love letter’. Inventing sociality with Ray Johnson’s postal system.”
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Video Details and Descriptions

by Nicholas Maravell

DVD FOUR

Content Tags: Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, Nassau County Museum of Art, Picasso, The Cranbrook Academy of Art, Video

Ray’s Jasper Johns Portraits
  • December 21, 1987
  • 16 min. 9 sec.
  • Black and White
  • Taped: The Islip Art Museum, Islip, New York, with Museum Director Madeline Burnside
  • Equipment: Panasonic VHS recorder, Panasonic video camera

A presentation of portraits related to Jasper Johns. At the time, I edited the tape by recording frames at regular intervals with a time lapse function of the editor. I also added an overlapping multiple audio track. An unedited version of this video does not exist.

Ray’s Cranbrook Presentation
  • January 21, 1988
  • 45 min. 41 sec.
  • Color
  • Taped: To and from the T.S.S. Mall, Melville, New York and Greenlawn, New York, with Nelrose Maravell and Nigel Tangredi
  • Equipment: Panasonic SVHS recorder, Panasonic video camera

Ray and I set out to record his artworks for a potential exhibition at The Cranbrook Academy of Art. During 1988 Ray was working on several pieces that related to 1958 in some way. My mother and nephew are seen at the start of this video.

Link on a reference in this video

Owl & Turtle Reopens→

Ray Saying Ray Johnson
  • February 24, 1988
  • 1 min. 40 sec.
  • Color
  • Taped: The Nassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn, New York
  • Equipment: Panasonic SVHS recorder, Panasonic video camera

This is a recording of Ray saying his name.

Ray Shows Nick’s Car and Roy Rogers
  • February 24, 1988 * 18 min. 54 sec.
  • Color
  • Taped: The Nassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn, New York, and
    a nearby Roy Rogers Restaurant
  • Equipment: Panasonic SVHS recorder, Panasonic video camera

I had once asked Ray if he would be interested in painting the
exterior of my car. In this video, taped in the parking lot of The
Nassau County Museum of Art, Ray showed an artwork that related to
this request. We then went to a Roy Rogers restaurant for a meal and
more recording.

Ray at Les Levine’s House
  • 1988
  • 6 min. 50 sec.
  • Color
  • Taped: Les Levineʼs House, Long Island, New York
  • Equipment: Panasonic SVHS recorder, Panasonic video camera

Les Levine previously arranged to video tape Ray at his home.
Ray then brought me along to videotape the videotaping.

Ray at a Lawn Party and a Cinema Lobby
  • June 18, 1988
  • 25 min. 15 sec.
  • Black & White and also Color
  • Taped: Peterʼs home, Huntington Station, New York
  • The Community Cinema, Huntington, New York
  • Equipment: Panasonic SVHS recorder, Panasonic video camera

Ray and I attended a Picasso Party at the home of one of Ray’s friends. While there, Ray freely shared information on his art and other matters. After the party we went to The Community Cinema to see Wim Wendersʼ film, Wings of Desire. The footage that I shot on this day was the last I recorded of Ray. He had mentioned once of wanting to videotape again at a local pet cemetery, but this we never did.

Links on references in this video

Paul Morrissey →
Jane Forth→