[ISEA2011] Panel: Timothy Murray –– Out of Line? Archiving Internet Art Off-Line

Panel Statement

Panel: New Media Archives- New Intelligent Ambiances

The Rose Gold­sen Archive of New Media Art, in the Cor­nell Uni­ver­sity Li­brary, has en­gaged in an ag­gres­sive pro­gram of pro­duc­ing and archiv­ing in­ter­net art.   In my pre­sen­ta­tion, I will re­hearse chal­lenges faced by the Archive in pro­duc­ing the in­ter­net art jour­nal, CTHE­ORY Mul­ti­me­dia, which pub­lished fin­ished pieces of in­ter­net art, often re­quir­ing the freez­ing on open data sets for the pur­poses of pub­lish­ing and archiv­ing.  Com­pro­mises made in the pro­duc­tion of in­ter­net art, for the sake of pro­vid­ing data sets that would be equally avail­able to var­i­ous browsers helped to shape the archivist’s cu­ra­to­r­ial phi­los­o­phy in archiv­ing both CTHE­ORY Mul­ti­me­dia and other large repos­i­tory’s of in­ter­net art, par­tic­u­larly Computerfinearts.?com and Turbulence.?org.  To be dis­cussed with the pros and cons of the cu­ra­to­r­ial de­ci­sion to archive large sets of in­ter­net art off-line, pro­vid­ing a sta­ble backup and onset data set for oth­er­wise eco­nom­i­cally un­sta­ble hosts of in­ter­net art.   In con­sid­er­ing whether off-line archiv­ing is ar­tis­ti­cally “out of line,” I will cite the prece­dent of an off-line net art ex­hi­bi­tion that I cu­rated with Teo Spiller in Slove­nia, INFOS 2000, in which we cir­cu­lated in­ter­net art on CD-Rom to users and in­de­pen­dent media cen­ters whose eco­nomic po­si­tion pre­cluded ac­cess to high band­with in­ter­net ser­vice.  In this case the cu­ra­to­r­ial de­ci­sion was a po­lit­i­cal one, more flex­i­ble plat­forms for greater ac­cess.   How does these artis­tic and po­lit­i­cal par­a­digms shift in the case of on­site cu­rat­ing and preser­va­tion of large col­lec­tions of in­ter­net art?

  • Tim­o­thy Mur­ray is Di­rec­tor of the So­ci­ety for the Hu­man­i­ties, Pro­fes­sor of Com­par­a­tive Lit­er­a­ture and Eng­lish, and Cu­ra­tor of the Rose Gold­sen Archive of New Media Art, at Cor­nell Uni­ver­sity. USA. He is co-mod­er­a­tor of the empyre-soft-skinned space, new media list­serv and the au­thor of Dig­i­tal Baroque: New Media Art and Cin­e­matic Folds (Min­nesota 2008); Zonas de Con­tacto: el arte en CD-ROM (Cen­tro de la im­a­gen, 1999); Drama Trauma: Specters of Race and Sex­u­al­ity in Per­for­mance, Video, Art (Rout­ledge, 1997); Like a Film: Ide­o­log­i­cal Fan­tasy on Screen, Cam­era and Can­vas (Rout­ledge, 1993); The­atri­cal Le­git­i­ma­tion: Al­le­gories of Ge­nius in XVI­Ith-Cen­tury Eng­land and France (Ox­ford, 1987). He is ed­i­tor of Mime­sis, Masochism & Mime: The Pol­i­tics of The­atri­cal­ity in Con­tem­po­rary French Thought (Michi­gan, 1997) and, with Alan Smith, Re­pos­ses­sions: Psy­cho­analy­sis and the Phan­tasms of Early-Mod­ern Cul­ture (Min­nesota, 1997). His cu­ra­to­r­ial pro­jects in­clude CTHE­ORY MUL­TI­ME­DIA and Con­tact Zones: The Art of the CD-Rom.   goldsen.library.cornell.edu                subtle.net/empyrectheorymultimedia.cornell.edu    contactzones.cit.cornell.edu