The Association of Moving Image Archivists Student Chapter at New York University and Independent Media Arts Preservation present on October 13, 2012...

Archiving the Arts: addressing preservation in the creative process

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This symposium will explore the relationship between media artists and audiovisual archivists. Archiving the Arts calls for a dialogue in order to enhance mutual understanding between the two constituencies. By exposing these communities to best practices, working methods, and the technological and industry-specific realities faced by members of each group, we hope to foster a discussion, improve current conditions, and widen awareness of preventative preservation for the long term.

The problems associated with preserving born-digital works combined with the threat of media obsolescence intensify the urgency of preemptive preservation practices. Film and video archivists know all too well the risks media artworks face. At the same time, artists face the same concerns—not only with completed works, but also with the raw materials of film, video, audio, and digital objects, which are essential to artists’ ongoing creative process. But often these two groups lack a common language and a way for their communities to interact and develop tools to serve all parties. Archivists don’t necessarily understand the creative process. Artists don’t always think about their work in terms of its preservation.

Archiving the Arts promotes dialogue between working professionals, artists, students, and other interested parties whose goal is to prevent avoidable loss of creative works by integrating preservation strategies into moving image creation and production.

This day-long symposium will tackle the practical, theoretical, and technical issues that affect the artist and the archivist. Working across disciplines will spark a dynamic conversation and create a deeper understanding of the importance of preventative preservation.