[-empyre-] Closing thoughts on Archiving New Media Art: Ephemerality and/or Sustainability

claudia claudiakozak at yahoo.com.ar
Sun Oct 10 09:10:42 EST 2010

Dear all,

In response to the enthusiastic welcome by Tim, Renate and each of the
participants of the past month debate, I would like to thank not only Tim
and Renate for inviting me to be part of the -empyre- list, but everybody
for the posts. As I've been preparing a paper for a Coloquium which will be
held in Rio de Janeiro next week on "Práticas do Acaso/Practiques du
Hasard"), I couldn't find time to follow the very interesting debates of the
past two weeks closer, but I intend to reread everything!


-----Mensaje original-----
De: empyre-bounces at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
[mailto:empyre-bounces at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au] En nombre de Timothy Murray
Enviado el: sábado, 09 de octubre de 2010 05:53 p.m.
Para: soft_skinned_space
Asunto: [-empyre-] Closing thoughts on Archiving New Media Art: Ephemerality
and/or Sustainability

Hello, everyone.   As we transition into another special topic, soon 
to be introduced by Renate, I want to express my thanks and 
enthusiasm for the  multilayered discussion of "Archiving New Media: 
Ephemerality and/or Sustainability."  Particular thanks go to our 
featured guests, Vanina Hofman from Taxonomedia, Claudia Kozak  and 
Ricardo dal Farra from Argentina, Jon Ippolito and Mona Jimenez from 
the US, and Gabriela Previdillo from Brazil.   When we framed this 
discussion in dialogue with the Buenos Aires Taxonomedia conference, 
we hoped that the framework of " ephemerality and/or 
sustainability," would provide the occasion for reflections on not 
only the practice of archiving but also its socio-cultural 
implications.  Particularly welcome, from my point of view, is the 
importance of contributions from Latin America that have made more 
visible very crucial  issues of indigeneity that bear not only the 
various platforms of art practice but also on the politics and 
institutionalization of archiving itself.

Those of us who have been engaged in institutional archival projects, 
such as my Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art, at Cornell 
University,  continually find ourselves involved in spinning 
justifactory narratives regarding the viability of archiving new 
media art writ large but also pertaining to the challenges to 
accessibility due to obsolescence, etc.   One of my greatest lessons 
from this kind of work has been an ongoing sensitivity to the 
extensive variations of  both "new media" and "archive" per se, as 
well as to very different needs and articulations of the 
international community we try to serve at the Goldsen Archive that 
subsequently expand the parameters of the archive, in matter and 
theory.    This resulted, for instance, in the broad expansion of the 
initial mission of the Goldsen Archive away from focusing solely on 
computer-based art to include the longer history of video art and its 
relation to electronic art, partially in response to the important 
overlap of performance and video in theWen Pulin Archive of Chinese 
Avant-Garde Art, which we brought to the Goldsen from Beijing six 
years ago, and more recently with a partnership with Experimental 
Television Center.

Key to these shifts have been the expression of need by communities 
for whom new media (and video) have been vital to cultural and 
political expression, often in less than ideal institutional 
circumstances.   One very fruitful outcome of this month's discussion 
has been the welcome addition to the -empyre- dialogue of very 
specific accounts of the relation between new media and indigenous 
practices and politics across Latin America, from Chile to Argentina 
and Colombia to Brazil.   These accounts have stimulated extremely 
interesting dialogues with our discussants from better known media 
and performance initiatives in the UK , US, and Spain, in a way that 
has foregrounded the importance of culturally and politically based 
practices to the development of new media and to the emergent 
complexities of its archivization.

Thanks again for sharing time to focus on these very important 
issues.  I end by extending a particularly warm welcome to the new 
Latin American members of our -empyre- community.



Timothy Murray
Director, Society for the Humanities
Curator, The Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art, Cornell Library
Professor of Comparative Literature and English
A. D. White House
27 East Avenue
Cornell University
Ithaca, New York 14853
empyre forum
empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
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