Data sheet (Research project):
|Metadata to describe works that use variable media: "Archiving the Avant-Garde"|
|Title of research project|
Archiving the Avant-Garde: Documenting and Preserving Digital / Variable Media
|Location of research project|
4- Cataloguing structures for works of media art
Observer: Mélanie Avice
The research project Archiving the Avant-Garde: Documenting and Preserving Digital / Variable Media is closely linked to the development, documentation and dissemination of strategies to describe and preserve digital art and works that use variable media (performances, installations, conceptual arts). This research is being conducted in collaboration with the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Rhizome.org, Franklin Furnace Archive and Cleveland Performance Art Festival and Archive. One of the objectives of the project is to develop cataloguing rules and schemas for works that use variable media. The new metadata standards developed as part of the project will need to be compatible with those used in the arts and cultural communities. Metadata compatibility will allow information in records pertaining to variable media to be used in conjunction with information on works using traditional media (paintings, sculptures, etc.), while permitting metadata in the cataloguing of works using variable media to be integrated into a database that consolidates data from multiple institutions, such as the Museums and the Online Archive of California and the Art Museum Image Consortium.
Each partner in the Archiving the Avant-Garde project will conduct case studies on works that use variable media. As part of this process, cataloguing models must be tested with input from the artists of the works themselves. A series of descriptive elements must also be developed that correspond to the behaviours of the works rather than their physical aspects. The research project puts forward a metadata schema with the potential to create minimal descriptive records for variable media works of art (and the technologies they deploy) by mapping the metadata proposed by the project to existing metadata standards in the cultural milieu: Dublin Core, Encoded Archival Description, Categories for Description of Works of Art and Machine-Readable Cataloging. The cataloguing standards available in Metadata Encoding and Transmission Standard (and other standards under development by the Library of Congress) are better suited to the detailed recording of the artistic and technical structure of variable media works of art. The metadata standards for a detailed description produced by the project must therefore correspond to these metadata.
Section of the University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive Web site on the current digital media research project: Archiving the Avant-Garde: Documenting and Preserving Digital / Variable Media [On-line] (Page consulted November 3, 2005)