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"Staring Down Andy" at Practical Art Invites You to be the Subject

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Bryn Corbett
Video portrait of Julie Rist

From 1964-1966, Andy Warhol filmed more than 500 video portraits -- 60 seconds of film fixed on a single, unflinching subject -- of his friends, collaborators, and various denizens of the '60s art scene. The works were collected as Screen Test and displayed to the public in a series of exhibitions, which included portraits of Lou Reed, Bob Dylan, Allen Ginsberg and Cass Elliot.

Now, local artist Bryn Corbett is updating the idea to create a contemporary aesthetic, using high-definition cameras to capture his subjects. The idea is to capture the intensity, the emotion, and sometimes the uncomfortableness of a minute-long connection.

"That's when it gets interesting," Corbett says. "'Oh, I'm not just sitting here posing for a snap shot. This is me. I'm conveying me.'"

This Saturday at Practical Art in Phoenixvisitors will have the opportunity to "stare down Andy" by volunteering for Corbett's project. They will find themselves the subject of a 60 second video portrait, recorded in high speed at 1080p. The result is an intimate and sometimes uncomfortable connection between the viewer and the video, one that will be collected for use in the future.

Corbett was born in the U.K. and has lived in Phoenix for the last 10 years. He said he was unaware of the Warhol project when he first began doing the video portraits.

Those interested can stop by Practical Art any time between 7 and 10 p.m., and can also make reservations if there's a specific time they want to request.

Practical Art is located at 5070 North Central Avenue in Phoenix. The recordings will run from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. this Saturday. Potential subjects can call 602-264-1414 to schedule a reservation. For more information visit the event listing on Practical Art's Facebook page.

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