Video art is an art form which relies on moving pictures in a visual and audio medium. Video art came into existence during the late 1960s and early 1970s as new consumer video technology became available outside corporate broadcasting. Video art can take many forms: recordings that are broadcast; installations viewed in galleries or museums; works streamed online, distributed as video tapes, or DVDs; and performances which may incorporate one or more television sets, video monitors, and projections, displaying ‘live’ or recorded images and sounds;.1
Video art is named after the original analog video tape, which was most commonly used recording technology in the form’s early years. With the advent of digital recording equipment, many artists began to explore digital technology as a new way of expression.
One of the key differences between video art and theatrical cinema is that video art does not necessarily rely on many of the conventions that define theatrical cinema. Video art may not employ the use of actors, may contain no dialogue, may have no discernible narrative or plot, or adhere to any of the other conventions that generally define motion pictures as entertainment. This distinction also distinguishes video art from cinema’s subcategories (avant garde cinema, short films, or experimental films, etc.). – Wikipedia
Since the 1960s, a range of artists previously working in painting, sculpture and other static forms turned to the use of moving image media in order both to record and to help create works of art that would exist in time. While some of these ventures borrowed from or engaged with the idea of experimental film, they were not identical with it. For one thing, the artist’s body in performance was often taken to be the site of a neutral or documentary style recording. The new technology of video tape recording offered different aesthetic possibilities, such as the real-time feedback loop, that did not exist with film. But perhaps most importantly, these works were not intended to form a completely separate and distinct practice from other forms of contemporary art, but rather to intervene in the ongoing stuggle over its definition and possibilities. While in the 1970s amd 80s, “video art” tended to be exhibited on single television sets in a gallery or museum space, artists since the mid-1990s have increasingly tended to incorporate the moving image within larger environments or situations, often using multiple screens. This work is often “site-specific” in the sense that it is not easy to distribute, and you either see it in the gallery or museum space in which it is presented, or you don’t see it at all. – Karagarga
I’m not sure if there really is a clear delineation between video art and avant garde cinema, short films, or experimental films, etc, but I am doing my best to make the distinction. I think a lot of videos/films can fit under many, and in some cases no, categories. Not that it really matters. It is more a matter of keeping the list from becoming too long.
Some of video art’s sub-genres:
Single-screen video tapes
‘Abstract’ synthesized video