GBH Openvault

New Television; Digital Speech

Part of New Television Workshop.

Approximate date: 1984

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New Television
Digital Speech
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

The artist tells the amusing true story of a trip to Turkey and his attempts at learning and speaking the Turkish language. At first, he sits in front of the camera and tells his story directly. Then he is shown telling the story on a monitor in what seems to be a studio. His face is sometimes shown in extreme close-up, out of focus, or in a darkened room with his face dimly lit. His speech sometimes changes from a common form of speaking to a deliberately articulated, poetic, philosophic language. Periodically, the story is interrupted by a shot of rapidly gesticulating hands with a voiceover of a man's voice, electronically altered, speaking rapid Turkish. The piece as a whole touches on themes of communication and the roadblocks that language poses. It is approximately 12 minutes in length.

Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Turkish language
Language and languages
Film and Television
Meneses, Jim ()
Rose, Peter ()
Chicago: “New Television; Digital Speech,” GBH Archives, accessed April 17, 2024,
MLA: “New Television; Digital Speech.” GBH Archives. Web. April 17, 2024. <>.
APA: New Television; Digital Speech. Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
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