Mark Dean began looping appropriated film as an art student in the late 1970’s, and in the 1980’s extended this technique into music; these practices were eventually combined in the methodology for which Dean became recognised as a video & sound artist from the 1990’s onwards.

Music has remained an integral part of Dean’s art practice, with looped and layered sound samples often providing the structural basis for video works. This treatment of music as primary material is paralleled by a consistent use of film as objet trouvé; however, Dean’s use of appropriation differs, at least from some of the more reductive interpretations of such work, in that it is based not on a theory of the emptiness of images, but on a theology of kenosis, or self-emptying; a practice grounded in the lived experience of trauma.

In 2021 Dean began publishing video albums on chaplachap records; while referencing vinyl concept albums, they also recall a time when video artists conceptualised a future of dematerialised art, distributed outside of commodification systems. The technology to realise this eventually arrived, but along with it came both a shift in patterns of consumption and a convergence of media, such that ‘video art’ itself may no longer exist except as an art-historical phenomenon; and yet here we are…