Pola Weiss, Artist in distribution, Mexico, 1947

Pola Weiss (1947-1990) lived and worked in Mexico City; she is often called the first pioneer of video art in Mexico. She obtained a degree in Communication and Journalism, and wrote an innovative thesis in video format about artistic production for television. In 1973, she travelled to New York where she met Shigeko Kubota and Nam June Paik, whose method influenced Weiss’ oeuvre, for example in the use of video feedback which is also typical for Paik’s early works. From the early 1970s Pola Weiss has produced a series of videos which are characterized by highly personal explorations, a strong search for identity and a deep interest in her cultural roots. Throughout her oeuvre, she portrayed daily life in Mexico with great sensitivity and respect; in several works, she incorporated performance and dance while holding the camera, resulting in a form of expression that she labelled “videodanza” (video dance). Weiss’ work has been exhibited worldwide and was, among others, featured in the 1984 Venice Biennial.