Match Match Their Courage

Match Match Their Courage acts on the device of acoustic feedback and features Nancy Holt and Charlemagne Palestine, shot with two cameras and seen in close-up on a split screen. For the mise-en-scène, Serra equipped both artists with a video monitor showing the image of the other, while each was at the same time confronted with the audio feedback of their own voice and the actual locution of the other through earphones. Corresponding to their divergent responses to the challenging audiovisual exchange, the two parts of the screen have different color schemes: Holt, who reflects on the setting rather rationally, is colored in cool blue, while Palestine, who comments rather emotionally and sensually on the situation, is bathed in warm orange. In the course of the videotape, the interaction between Holt and Palestine becomes more and more intense. Originally, the work was a videotape made in the television studio Windsor Total Video, New York, in cooperation with the art dealer Leo Castelli. Subsequently, due to Serra’s artistic choice, the NTCS tape was transferred to 16mm film to visually enlarge the spatial and temporal qualities of television (such as the split screen, the immediate feedback, the nature of colorization). Eventually, when it came to the distribution of the film, the Leo Castelli Gallery made the work available as videotape.