Whitman is considered to play a key role in the understanding of performances. He was a forefather of the happening discipline in the art world as well as a pioneer in the use of new technologies as a tool of artistic creation. During the sixties, he will incorporate the film to his installations in order to encourage the public to have both a collective and intense aesthetic experience. His work is known its poetic and dreamy imagery achieved through the use of light, shadows and slides.
During 1968 and 1981 he participated in several projects in New York, Japan and India. However, it wasn’t until 2006 that the artist displayed his work in a Spanish museum. The MACBA curated an exhibition titled Playback which showed a wide range of Whitman’s work through the display of video and pictures of his past performances. This retrospective exhibition especially emphasized Whitman’s ability to explore poetic language through the use of new technology.