GBH Openvault

New Television; Double Take

Part of New Television Workshop.

Approximate date: 1989

License Clip

This program cannot be made available on Open Vault.

More material may be available from this program at the GBH Archives. If you would like research access to the collection at GBH, please email

New Television
Double Take
Series Description

"New Television" began as a local pilot production of WNET (New York) in 1986. In 1987, WGBH signed on as co-producer, and the shows were aired in Boston and New York. In 1988 and 1989, KCET (Los Angeles) and WETA (D.C.) became producers in association. In 1991, PBS picked up "New Television," and it was broadcast nationally. The following year, the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio, replaced WNET, WETA, and KCET as co-producer with WGBH. In 1993, WGBH ceased to be a co-producer for the series, and the "home base" moved to Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) in Hartford, CT.

"New Television" commissioned, produced, and acquired programming. In its early years, "New Television" broadcast works commissioned by The Contemporary Art Television (CAT) Fund. Increasingly, experimental films as well as video works were broadcast as a part of this series. Many of the later episodes of "New Television" contain works that play with and deconstruct the documentary genre. Series release date: 1986

Program Description

"[Lynn] Hershman delves into different aspects of truth, illusion, and reality in a quasi-documentary that never lets on exactly where objectivity ends and subjectivity begins. The artist tells the story of an obsessive relationship between a transient young woman and a videomaker, giving no hint as to whether the footage was staged or spontaneous." -- WGBH press release. Dennis, the videomaker, talks about his mounting interest in a young girl, Lian, who lives on the streets. He introduces footage of her. Lian vacillates between seeming self-possessed and strong and seeming incredibly vulnerable. Dennis' interest becomes increasingly suspect. Lian's therapist discusses her history and the relationship between the two. At one point, Lian is filmed singing in the Hall of Flowers in Golden Gate Park. The work was broadcast as a segment of episode 503 (1989), and episode 109 (1991), of "New Television.

Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Homeless youth
Video recordings--Production and direction
Interpersonal relations
Film and Television
Hershman-Leeson, Lynn, 1941- ()
Koszegi, Zsuzsa ()
Amber, Lian ()
Matthews, Dennis ()
Chicago: “New Television; Double Take,” GBH Archives, accessed April 17, 2024,
MLA: “New Television; Double Take.” GBH Archives. Web. April 17, 2024. <>.
APA: New Television; Double Take. Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
If you have more information about this item, we want to know! Please contact us, including the URL.