Originally named Experimental Intermedia Foundation (EIF), it was Summers who provided the definition of the term “intermedia” which still plays a prominent role in the aesthetic of Experimental Intermedia under Niblock. She says, “Intermedia is when you enter the image and get wrapped up in it. You become part of the image.” A true melding of multiple medias, this definition could be exemplified by her own use of the dancer’s body as a projection screen for the early experimental cinematography of Niblock’s, and it helped to inform the mixture of sound, movement and video/film that germinated into EIs later programming, especially its popular annual winter solstice event featuring eight hours of video, film and music.
Through the mid 70s the three most active members of the Experimental Intermedia Foundation were Summers, Niblock, and composer Philip Corner. For almost a decade, these three artists used the Foundation as a way to secure funding for their work, but Corner ceased EIF-related activities in 1976 and Elaine Summers made Niblock the sole director when she stopped producing projects under its umbrella in 1986. At that time, Phill changed the name to its current Experimental Intermedia (EI) even if EIF remains printed on records as label and copyright holder at least up to the 1990s.
Throughout its history EI has produced more than 1000 events in its New York lofts.
EI has also produced many intermedia events in other cities in the US and abroad (founding a subsidiary in Gent, Belgium in 1998).
EI manages its compact disc series, named XI.
EI develops and implements international projects in collaboration with like-minded organizations.