Welcome to VIVO’s Crista Dahl Media Library & Archive

The Crista Dahl Media Library & Archive (CDMLA) at VIVO Media Arts Centre is situated on the stolen Unceded Coast Salish Territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. It houses a significant repository of videotapes by artists and independent producers. Spanning 60 years of production, its 8000 media works reflect the complexity of video art history.

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49 Years of Satellite Video Exchange Society Programs 
The Satellite Video Exchange Society – operating as Video Inn, Video In, Video In Studios, and VIVO Media Arts Centre – has produced public programming since 1973. Some of these events have been documented. So has, much rarely and more informally, the internal workings of the collective and organization, and its cultural workers.  For the past year, we’ve been digitizing our documentation collection including videos, audio, photographs, and documents. A portion is now available online or by request. 
This Project has been made possible in part by the Documentary Heritage Communities Program offered by Library and Archives Canada / Ce projet a été rendu possible en partie grâce au Programme pour les collectivités du patrimoine documentaire offert par Bibliothèque et Archives Canada.
A video still as an image of a black and white paste-up publication to an image of a 1984 image of a tan Macintosh Computer with a pixellated script of the word "hello" on the screen. The page includes captions.
A/Mending the Little Books of Margaret DraguOngoing
Dragu Videos include Captions and Audio Description
This Sticky Impulse revisits and reimagines Margaret Dragu’s publishing project Little Books (1987-2011) aka Same Day Edit Press. These “create-in-one-day” paste-ups of “poetry, manifestos, stand-up monologues, short stories, and rants” capture the slippery struggles of Margaret as artist, wage labourer, mother and activist. Dragu, in collaboration with Access Artist, Cheryl Green, continues her investigation into the potentiality of publishing in three new videos that amend and expand on original content from her Little Books. Includes a conversatin between Jacob Wren and Margaret on writing and performance. (transcript available).
From the Paul Wong Archive
Art, Culture & Politics Through the Portable Video Lens (1973-1993)
This exhibit features the early video experiments by Vancouver media artist, Paul Wong – as creator, videographer, director, and collaborator – with the first portable video technology that emerged in the 1960s (1/2″ open reel) and the much smaller and lighter formats of the 1980-90s (Video 8/Hi-8 cassette). Wong captures the cultural and artistic trends of this place: early works of now well-recognized artists and the influence of American and international artists and practices. Included are rare recordings commissioned by Helen Goodwin for The Performance Warehouse. His personal, previously unreleased recordings feature environmental protests and insightful and intimate portraits of family, revealing iterative themes and strategies evident in Wong’s practice today as he continues to embrace portability and stealth through the extraordinary capabilities of smartphone technology.



Celebration ’90
Gay Games III & Cultural Festival
Online at Digital Museum Canada
Celebration ’90 chronicles the fascinating eight-year journey taken by a small group of Vancouver amateur athletes which led to the first Gay Games to be hosted outside the United States. The exhibit is centered around s video documentation and interviews with staff, volunteers, and athletes, shot by Fast Forward Productions  founded by Vancouver producer and lesbian activist,Mary Anne McEwen).

Women & West Coast Labour 
80 years of action for equity in domestic & workplace labour by women in B.C.
This exhibit features media and publications from the Sara Diamond and Women In Focus fonds.
Part 1: Chambermaids to Whistlepunks
Part 2: Working Women In Focus

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Archive/Counter Archive
Gendered Violence: Responses & Remediations
VIVO is an institutional partner with York University’s SSHRC project Archive/Counter Archive. Our case study starts this April. Researchers include Gabriela Aceves-Sepulveda, Amber Berson, Zoe Druick, Susan Lord, & Cait McKinney. Public programs begin this fall.
Recollective: Vancouver Independent Archives Week
Recollective is a joint initiative of 221AArtspeakgrunt galleryRungh MagazineThe Morris and Helen Belkin Art GalleryVIVO Media Arts CentreWestern Front, and Allison Collins, Curator.
VIVO projects Pisces Midheaven: The Lenore Herb Cassette Collection and Trans Archival Futures with Chase Joynt & Chris E.Vargas.




Every Queer Thing
A Subject Guide to Archival Materials of Queer Identity or Experience.
A searchable online finding aid for LGBTQ2S+ media, publications, and Special Collections at the CDMLA.
What Remains: Meg Torwl
The most recent iteration of the Sticky Impulse,  a series that features our Special Collections. The What Remains exhibit drawn from the Meg Torwl fonds. Video, radio, poetry, drawings, and photographs related to the practice of  queer and disability activist, Meg Torwl, created in British Columbia and New Zealand.
Women, Art & the Periphery
Mujeres, arte y periferia
Documentation of Chilean artists Diamela Eltit, Nellie Richards, and Lotty Rosenfeld In Residence at Women In Focus and Video In, 1987.
Cerizay: they dared_En Greve
En Grève! 1970s French Activisms at the CDMLA
1970s French militant video & related CDMLA resources. A supplemental exhibit and guide to videos presented as part of  En grève: 1970s French Labour Activism on Screen, a project of Unit Pitt and VIVO.


Open by appointment only. Occupancy limits apply.
Please forward appointment requests to library@vivomediaarts.com.
We are also happy to assist with remote research.