Categories
Publications

Glimmer: Refracting Rock

Glimmer: Refracting Rock,” LA+ 12: GEO (University of Pennsylvania, 2020)

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Publications

The Spectacle of Data: A Century of Fiches, Fairs and Fantasies

The Spectacle of Data: A Century of Fiches, Fairs, and Fantasies,” Theory, Culture & Society, special issue edited by Ryan Bishop and John Phillips (2020) [I presented part of this work as a keynote; you can find my copious slides here

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Publications

Encrypted Repositories

Encrypted RepositoriesAmodern 9 (April 2020)

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Projects

Code, Craft & Catalogues: Arts in the Libraries: 2019

On March 9, 2019, I partnered with the Metropolitan New York Library Council and the Finnish Cultural Institute in New York to host a half-day symposium on arts in the libraries. [Photos by Aidan Grant + Neta Bomani]:

What role do the arts and design play in today’s libraries? Our major public institutions frequently commission high-profile public art, some libraries feature dedicated exhibition space, and artists and designers have long drawn inspiration from archival and library collections. Yet today, as we access and create knowledge through an expanding array of designed platforms and interfaces, infrastructures and algorithms, aesthetic operations are integral to the core services that libraries provide. We see a growing number of library- and archive-based artists’ residencies and exhibitions, and expanding interest in more sustained collaborations across the library and art worlds. In this symposium we gather librarians, artists, designers, and representatives from allied fields to examine recent examples of library-centered creative practice, discuss the mutual benefits of such collaborations, and propose new models for growing and sustaining these partnerships.

Live-documentation provided by Neta Bomani & Cybernetics Library.

Presenters included: Greta Byrum, Toisha Tucker, Salome Asega, Anni Vartola, Laura Norris, Jussi Parikka, Ilari Laamanen, Trent MillerJer ThorpBurak Arikan, Kameelah Janan Rasheed

Event program

Videos:

Zine

Design by Johanna Lundberg:

Categories
Publications

The Archival Apparatus

The Archival Apparatus,” PROPS 18: The Disciplining Image (Yale/MIT: August 2017) [pdf here]

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Publications

Closet Archive

Closet Archive,” Places Journal (July 2017) 

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Classes

Archived Course: Archives, Libraries + Databases

Graduate seminar elective

“There has been more information produced in the last 30 years
than during the previous 5000.”

We’ve all heard some variation on this maxim. As U.S. publishers add 250,000 printed books and close to 300,000 print-on-demand books to our libraries each year; as we find ourselves wading through over 200 million websites; as we continue to add new media – from Tweets to Apps to geo-tagged maps – to our everyday media repertoires, we continually search for new ways to navigate this ever more treacherous sea of information. Throughout human history we have relied on various institutions and politico-intellectual architectures to organize, index, preserve, make sense of, and facilitate or control access to our stores of knowledge, our assemblages of media, our collections of information. This seminar looks at the past, present, and future of the library, the archive, and the database, and considers what logics, priorities, politics, audiences, contents, aesthetics, physical forms, etc., ally and differentiate these institutions. We will examine what roles the library, archive, and the database play in democracy, in education, in everyday life, and in art. Throughout the semester we’ll examine myriad analog and digital artworks that make use of library/archival material, or take the library, archive, or database as their subject. Some classes will involve field trips and guest speakers. Students will have the option of completing at least one theoretically-informed creative/production project for the class.

I was invited to talk about our work in this course at the 2014 Digital Preservation conference at the Library of Congress (talk + slides here), on the LOC’s Signal blog, and at the 2015 New York Art Resources Consortium conference at the Museum of Modern Art (talk + slides here). Archivist Extraordinaire Rick Prelinger has also had some nice things to say about the course:

Fall 2014: Syllabus | Course Website

Fall 2013: Syllabus | Course Website | Recap of Semester + Student Projects

Fall 2012: Syllabus | Course Website | Recap of Semester + Student Projects

Spring 2011: Syllabus | Course Website | Recap of Semester + Student Projects

Categories
Classes

Archived: Bookshelves to Big Data: Archaeologies of Knowledge

Graduate elective

“There has been more information produced in the last 30 years than during the previous 5000.”

We’ve all heard some variation on this maxim. As we find ourselves wading through a billion websites; as publishers supply over two million books to the world’s libraries each year; as we continue to add new media – from apps to geo-tagged maps – to our everyday media repertoires, we continually search for new ways to navigate this ever more treacherous sea of information. Meanwhile, our analog audio-visual archives are deteriorating, and our ever-volatile digital media and data sets present their own preservation challenges. Throughout human history we have relied on various institutions and politico-intellectual architectures to organize, index, preserve, make sense of, and facilitate or control access to our stores of knowledge, our assemblages of media, our collections of information. This seminar looks at the past, present, and future of our archives, libraries, and data repositories, and considers what logics, politics, audiences, contents, aesthetics, physical forms, etc., define them. We will examine what roles these collections play in a variety of contexts: in democracy, in education, in socio-cultural heritage, in everyday life, and in art. Throughout the semester we’ll examine myriad analog and digital artworks that make use of archival/library material, or take the archive, library, or data repository as their subject. Some classes will involve field trips and guest speakers. Students will have the option of completing a substantial traditional research project, or a research-based, theoretically-informed creative/production project for the class.

Fall 2016 Website
See also Archives, Libraries & Databases (previous version of the course: 2011-2014)

Categories
Publications

A Brief History of the Shelf

A Brief History of the Shelf,” Harvard Design Magazine 43, “Shelf Life” Special Issue on Storage, December 2016.

Categories
Publications

Indexing the World of Tomorrow

Indexing the World of Tomorrow,” Places (February 2, 2016)

on filing and the 1939 World’s Fair — or, on the aesthetics of administration and the urban imaginary