Colen Fitzgibbon

Born in 1950, Coleen Fitzgibbon was active as an experimental film and video artist under the pseudonym "Colen Fitzgibbon" between the years 1973-1980. A student of Owen Land (aka "George Landow") and Stan Brakhage during her years as a film/video student at Art Institute of Chicago (1971-73), she later attended the Whitney Museum of American Art's Independent Study Program under Ron Clark (1973-74), studying with international artists such as Michael Snow, Yvonne Rainer, Vito Acconci, Donald Judd, and Dennis Oppenheim.

Between the years 1973-1976 Fitzgibbon made some of her most rigorous experimental work to date on 16mm and super 8 film, screening at numerous international film festivals and museums.

Fitzgibbon's collaborative sensibilities continued when she co-founded the New York based Collaborative Projects, Inc. (Colab). Forming in 1977, Colab was an organized group of 30 to 60 artists seeking an alternative outlet that would call into question and challenge the emergence of the “art market” in their New York milieu.

Fitzgibbon recalls: “The Colab period was an attempt at a non-hierarchical socialist art movement within NYC's international capital finance system, and had been inspired by other earlier groups such as Oldenberg's Store, The Fox publications, Judson Dance Group and the teachings of Ron Clark, as well as others.”

The roster of artists in Colab included Robin Winters, Tom Otterness, Charlie and John Ahearn ”“ to name a few. An integral member in Colab, Fitzgibbon organized artist shows in her loft studio at 5 Bleeker Street with thematic titles such as “Income & Wealth,” “Manifesto” (with Jenny Holzer and Robert Cooney), “Just Another Asshole” (with Barbara Ess, Jane Sherry, and Virginia Piersol); as well as being one of the key organizers of the notorious Times Square Show in 1980.

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