Waaaay Belated Recap of Final Projects

August 26th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Mormon Genealogical Archive Vaults, Little Cottonwood Canyon, NV, via http://bit.ly/IShv9J

Here’s what everyone did this semester:

  • Grace examined soil painting, dance, and song as archival practices among the Talaandig tribe in Bukidnon Province, the Philippine — which is where Grace is from.
  • Lily examined the influence of Belle Da Costa Greene, Pierpont Morgan’s personal librarian, in shaping not only the Morgan Library, but also the field of librarianship.
  • Sue studied various cases in which photography has been used to archive urban redevelopment.
  • Chris offered a fabulous psychoanalytic reading — using the work of Derrida and Carolyn Steedman — of the Mormon Archive.
  • Allison, who worked for the New York City Ballet, discussed historical and recent attempts to archive live dance performance, and her discussion included various approaches to dance notation.
  •  Christo explored the spatiality of databases: the space occupied by databases’ technical infrastructure; the departmental spaces linked together by an institution’s (e.g., police or immigration) databases; and the geographic spaces from which data is drawn, and which are housed together on a database.
  • Chris, who worked for UNICEF, critically assessed his own team’s efforts to introduce digital kiosks and SMS-based systems to increase access to information and “mirror the work of public libraries” in Africa.
  • Danielle examined the evolving material form of the book, and how that morphing object necessitates changes within the institutions charged with selling, storing, and cataloging it.
  • Maria, a native of Bogotá, examined her city’s network of public libraries — comprised of dozens of architecturally significant buildings constructed within the past 15 years — and the vital role they play in civic life.
  • Stephen, who maintains his own extensive database of videogame artwork, considered the notion of “fidelity” in regard to the archived, born-digital image.
  • Kelly conducted fieldwork in public libraries in and around Crown Heights, Brooklyn, to see how teenagers were being served, if at all.
  • Ran examined the archival practices (including how various media formats are processed) and politics of the Lesbian Herstory Archives.
  • Darrell studied the creation of the Fugazi Live Series by consulting with the band and participating archivists [you’ll find part of his project here].
  • Nick questioned the notion of the “document” in the work of Walid Raad and The Atlas Group.
  • Steve dug into the Stasi archive, focusing in particular on the epistemic shift – the intellectual “renovation” of the archives – that accompanies a regime change, as well as the political, cultural and affective consequences of that shift.
  • And Rory speculated on ways that libraries might make more material and transparent their systems for classifying and storing knowledge, particularly those forms of digital knowledge that seem to have no material body.

Images & Orphans @ NYU – April 26 – Today!

April 26th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Images and Orphans: Seeing Pictures in the Archive
April 26, 4:00-6:00 PM, 19 University Place, Great Room (Ground Floor)

NYU Workshop in Archival Practice

Workshop Leaders:
Tina Campt, Professor of Women’s Studies and Africana Studies at Barnard College
Dan Streible, Associate Professor NYU Cinema Studies; Orphan Film Symposium

Previous workshops this semester have addressed “The Radical Politics of Hidden Archives” and “Black Gotham in/outside the Archive.” Among many other issues, these conversations raised the possibilities of writing “partial” histories by honoring the trace or fragment in the writing process, emphasized the importance of archivists as cultural mediators and editors of context, and questioned the categories of “hidden” and “radical,” ultimately asking whether radical movements die or cease to be radical once they are archived.

With “Images and Orphans: Seeing Pictures in the Archive,” the Workshop brings the series’ aims to the specific terrain of visual media. What types of knowledge do visual media archives produce? What particularities of form, methodology or narrative strategies should guide young scholars as they seek to develop archival acumen in working with the still or moving image?  How do current topics like the surge of interest in digital humanities or recent litigation decisions involving Google affect us?  In seeking to craft scholarly work using “lost works” of visual media (photographs with partial histories or orphan films), what are the politics of un-hiding?

Final Projects & End-of-Semester Agenda

April 21st, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

BiblioBurro from jeitson on Vimeo.

After much schedule consultation, calendar making, and class discussion, I think I’ve worked out an end-of-semester plan that offers more advantages (e.g., no super-rushed 7-minute presentations, more time for discussion, better venue, food and drink) than disadvantages (e.g., three of you won’t be able to join us for the final meeting; you have to sacrifice a Friday night) and delivers the “greatest good” for the greatest number of people. Here’s the plan:

Our class on May 3 will be optional. You’re encouraged to attend if you’d like to workshop your final presentation, extend or wrap up any of our in-class discussions from throughout the semester, collaboratively reflect on the course, etc. But you’re not obligated to be there, and you won’t be penalized for not attending.

All final projects will be due by the beginning of class on May 10. This means you’ve got a one-week extension. Your means of submission will depend on the particular format of your project. If it’s a paper, just submit it via Google Docs. If it’s a full-scale recreation of Otlet’s Mundaneum, we’ll need to talk strategy.

In class on the 10th, we’ll have our first set of presentations. The day’s program will obviously include those of you who won’t be able to join us for our outside-of-class-meeting on the 13th (about which more below), but I’m hoping we’ll get a few additional volunteers. Ideally, we’ll have 5 or 6 presentations, of 15 minutes each, today. **UPDATE: Allison, Lily, Kelly, Sue, Nick, and Maria will be presenting on the 10th!**

Then, on Friday the 13th, from 6 to 10pm (we’ll end early if we finish early), we’ll have our remaining 10 or 11 presentations in room 1204 at 2 West 13th Street. I’ll order pizza. We’ll have drinks. As I mentioned above, three of you will unfortunately be unable to join us; you of course won’t be penalized for your absence. I’m also aware that a couple of you will be unavailable for the full four hours. That’s fine; we’ll accommodate your schedule.

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Feedback? Recommendations? Post a comment.

Scheduling Our Final Presentations

April 13th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

via Letterology: http://bit.ly/gOkHtA

There seems to be some interest in canceling one of our final two Tuesday afternoon meetings — either May 3 or May 10 — and scheduling a longer outside-of-class, and outside-the-classroom, meeting for (some of) our final presentations. Please respond to this availability poll before next Tuesday, so we can finalize our presentation schedule in class. If none of the polled times works for you, or if you’d simply prefer to present during one of our regular Tuesday afternoon meetings on May 3 or 10, please reply to this post or write me privately with your preferences.



Update: April 18: It’s looking like our best option is Friday the 13th. Oh no.

New Deadline for Project Proposals

April 6th, 2011 § 1 comment § permalink

Library Card, 1916, by Paul G: http://bit.ly/hGIwBZ

You’re welcome to take an extra week with your final project proposals. They’re now due before class on Tuesday, April 19. Of course you’re welcome to submit them before then! See the “Assignments” area for more details.

April 5: We’re Going on a Field Trip!

March 31st, 2011 § 1 comment § permalink

School Bus, by Phillip Capper on Flickr: http://bit.ly/gv4hGE

…to the Library! We’re meeting with Wendy Scheir and Allen Jones at 4pm in room 908 at 55 West 13th Street.

Digitization Discussion

March 25th, 2011 § 4 comments § permalink

Neo Libre – Content Digitization from Neo Libre on Vimeo.

The two most popular recommendations for use of our open week on April 5 were (1) discussing digitization and (2) welcoming a guest speaker. I’ve combined the two by inviting both Wendy Scheir, Director of the Kellen Archives, and Allen Jones, Director of Digital Library Programs at The New School, to talk with us about the practical concerns of digitization in libraries and archives. They’d like to respond to your specific interestsso please propose discussion topics and questions by replying to this post.



Field Trip to Municipal Archives, 3/1

February 22nd, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

On March 1 we’re meeting at the Municipal Archives at 4:15. According to the Archives’ website: “The Department of Records and Information Services is located in the Surrogate’s Court Building at 31 Chambers Street in the Civic Center area of lower Manhattan. The building is located on the northwest corner of Centre and Chambers Streets. All visitors to 31 Chambers Street must present a photo ID and pass through security magnetometers.”

via iamos on Flickr: http://bit.ly/hRFNzY

Again, from the Archives’ website: “The Brooklyn Bridge station on the 4, 5, 6, and the J, M, Z subway is one block from 31 Chambers Street. The City Hall Station on the N and R subway, and the Chambers Street Station on the A, C, E, 1, 2, 3 and 9 subway all are within a short distance.”

Our tour begins at 4:30, but please get there early so we have time to go through security.

Reanimation Library, February 19, 2-4pm

February 15th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

We are meeting at the Reanimation Library, at 543 Union Street (@ Nevins) in Brooklyn, on Saturday at 2pm. You can take either the F/G train to Carroll Street (from which the library is a three-block walk) or the R to Union Street (from which it’s a two-block walk).

Walk through the gate on Nevins Street, past the left-hand entrance to Cabinet magazine’s event space, and back to the Proteus Gowanus gallery entrance, also on the left. The Reanimation Library is in the back of the gallery.