[ISEA2020] Institutional Presentation: Bonnie Mitchell & Janice Searleman — SIGGRAPH Archive Research and Development: A Creative and Innovative Approach to Historical Digital Art Documentation

Institutional Presentation Statement

Also short Summit presentation

Keywords: SIGGRAPH, archive, preservation, electronic arts, digital art, repository, computer art, collections, visualization

This institutional presentation focuses on the innovations and interconnections in the ACM SIGGRAPH Digital Art Archive (https://digitalartarchive.siggraph.org/). Bonnie Mitchell and Jan Searleman have led a team of undergraduate students developing the back-end infrastructure and enhancing the content for this archive of SIGGRAPH, SIGGRAPH Asia, and the Digital Art Community Art Shows from 1980 to the present. In addition to adding innovative connections between the data, the archive now has the ability to create curated Collections of Art content from the archive resources. The latest achievement is the ability for artists to access the data to create custom visualizations.

ACM SIGGRAPH is a Special Interest Group of the ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques, and each year since 1981 they have held a digital art show at their annual conference. Most of the exhibitions have been documented in catalogs but are not readily available; therefore our team developed an online archive that collates all the material in a single place. The archive contains the artworks, scholarly papers, abstracts, videos, audio and presentations from the SIGGRAPH and SIGGRAPH Asia conferences, as well as the ACM SIGGRAPH Digital Art Community Online Exhibitions. Academics, students, independent artists, and people working in visual art and animation benefit in a myriad of ways from access to these historical materials. The archives contain over 4000 images, 4000 people pages, and 200 writings that are accessible in a myriad of ways.

In 2019, we added the ability to create Collections therefore enabling curators to recontextualize the materials in the archives in thematic ways. The first Collection was curated by Everardo Reyes and focuses on the artwork from the SIGGRAPH 2019 Art Papers. Over the next few years, we hope to add additional Collections such as the Traveling Art Shows and on Women Pioneers. One of the exciting new features is the ability to export the data as CSV and JSON which enables data visualization artists to create works that reveal trends and relationships between the data. The ACM SIGGRAPH Art Show Archives is now one of the largest collections of digital artworks, and the team is working with ISEA to create an infrastructure that enables the two archives to share resources. The SIGGRAPH Archive is part of a larger consortium to cooperate with other digital art archive developers around the world. One of our goals has been to improve the accuracy and completeness of the archives as well as add the new DAC, SIGGRAPH and SIGGRAPH Asia exhibitions. This work will continue into the following year and we will be adding unique standard name identifiers, gender identification, and other assets that enable researchers to understand the development of an innovative movement that changed the world.

Art of the SIGGRAPH 2019 Art Papers Collection
  • Janice Searleman, Adjunct Research Professor of Computer Science, Clarkson University, USA digitalartarchive.siggraph.org
  • Bonnie Mitchell, Bowling Green University, OH USA. SIGGRAPH Art Show archivist. member of the ISEA International Advisory Committee, former ISEA International board member. digitalartarchive.siggraph.org