[ISEA2022] Institutional Presentation: Bonnie Mitchell, Alexa Mahajan, Luis Wilson & Oliver Grau — Interconnecting Archives: Paving a Path Forward

Institutional Presentation Statement

Second Summit on New Media Art Archiving
June 10, MACBA – Convent dels Àngels. Invited presentation

Keywords: archiving, connections, database sanitization, wikidata, name authentication

The ISEA, SIGGRAPH, FILE, ADA and Ars Electronica online archives have been collaboratively developing a system to link information about the people and art events documented in their respective archives to each other. This panel discusses the challenging process of developing the technologies to connect new media art archives world-wide.

The concept of connecting information from various repositories of information has been around for quite a while, yet most online new media art archives exist independently without direct connections to each other. Programmers working on the ISEA, SIGGRAPH and FILE online archives have been collaboratively developing a system to link information about the people and art events documented in their respective archives to each other. This initiative will extend to include the Archive of Digital Art and Ars Electronica archives, as well as other archives, once the prototype is completed. This panel will discuss the challenging process of developing interfaces, building APIs, and working with wikidata as well as the process of analyzing, sanitizing, authenticating and modifying databases containing information about people and new media art events.

  • Bonnie Mitchell is a digital artist, animator, archivist as well as a professor at Bowling Green State University in Digital Arts, Ohio, USA. Mitchell’s artworks explore spatial and experiential relationships to our physical, social, cultural and psychological environment through interaction and physical immersion. Her creative work includes interactive installation art, environmental data visualization art, experimental visual music animation, net-art, and new media art archive development. Mitchell is the co-director of the SIGGRAPH History and ISEA Symposium online Archives and also a member of the organizing team of the Summit on New Media Art Archiving (first held in 2021 online and again in 2022 in Barcelona). She is also a member of the ISEA International Advisory Committee, the ACM SIGGRAPH History and Digital Arts Committees and is the SIGGRAPH 2023 History Chair in charge of the 50th conference celebration.
  • Alexa Mahajan is a senior at Bowling Green State University, USA, majoring in digital arts and minoring in computer science and math. She is interning at Pixar Animation Studios in the Pixar Undergraduate Program for technical direction, summer of 2022. Mahajan also works as a programmer for the SIGGRAPH History Archives, focusing on user interface development and content organization. She aspires to work as a technical director and get to combine her passion for animation and programming to develop tools that help others create with excellence.
  • Luis Wilson obtained a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education in Mexico in 2021. Currently he is a software engineer at Microsoft working in web development, his main area of interest. Since 2020, he has been a volunteer programmer for the SIGGRAPH History Archive, helping the site grow and reach its potential. He is also involved in the archive’s mission of creating interconnected data between new media art archives by creating tools that aid in establishing the relationship of data coming from different sources.
  • Oliver Grau (DE) is first Chair Professor for Image Science in the German-speaking countries at the Danube University since 2005 and has held more than 350 lectures and keynotes. Grau’s “Virtual Art,” (2003) is the most quoted art history monograph since 2000. He conceived scientific tools for digital humanities like the Archive for Digital Art (ADA, since 1999) and developed international MA programs like Image Science and the joint master in MediaArtsCultures. Grau was founding director of the MediaArtHistories Conferences. He has received several awards for books including Mediale Emotionen (2005), Imagery in the 21st Century (2011), recently: Digital Art through the Looking Glass (2020). 2014 he received a doctor h.c., 2015 he was elected into the Academia Europaea.