By 1969, Wise had established himself as a central figure in what has come to be known as the "art and technology" movement. His 57th St. gallery was one of the main showcases for kinetic and light sculpture, and initially Wise looked upon video as a kind of light work, an extension of kineticism. In 1969 he wrote, "Most Americans already have potential kinetic art right in their own living rooms: Television is kinetic art-it needs only to be "ordered" by an artist."4 Wise's step Into electronic art, however, was an Irreversible one. Within a year and a half after "TV as a Creative Medium" he closed his gallery and began plans for an organization designed to foster the work of video artists and their use of new technologies. That organization eventually became known as Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI).
Howard is a gentleman, which is rare in the art world. To appreciate him you have to be a little old-fashioned. He is the product of another and slightly more gracious age.5
Howard was very important because he went against the mainstream in his gallery.6
Howard was lucky to be born in the best time of American capitalism. He is a perfect balance of money and aesthetic. 7
-Nam June Paik
Howard Wise was born on Nov. 6,1903, in Cleveland, Ohio. He went to Europe for five years in the '20s, studied art at the Louvre and the Sorbonne and French, history, and constitutional law at Cambridge University in England.8 Upon his return to Cleveland, Wise went to work for his family's firm, the Arco Company, which manufactured industrial coatings. He successfully ran the company for 25 years, substantially expanding the business.
My father resigned during the Depression, so I had that responsibility at an early age. Like any other business, the Depression had hurt us a lot and we had a lot of labor unrest among the 300-400 employees. I -decided that I had better take a good look at the situation, and I got in touch with a labor consultant. He suggested that since we were a relatively small business we could keep an intimate relationship with the employees, so I did that. We had 10-year and
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