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'Documenting, Archiving and Preserving Ephemeral Art' Online Course by Node Center

'Documenting, Archiving and Preserving Ephemeral Art' Online Course by Node Center
Node Center for Curatorial Studies


- Duration: Nov 9 - 30, 2017 - Application deadline: Nov 6, 2017 - Lecturer: Tina Madsen - Participation fee: 148 EUR


Node Center for Curatorial Studies
Oranienstr. 24
10999 Berlin

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An Online Course by Node Center

The archive has a place in every institution and most contemporary artists document their work more extensively than ever before. While the collections are the main axis in any museum, ephemeral and performative art forms challenge these and other types of documents entering institutions. Contemporary artists additionally use archives in their artworks and create dynamic projects based on archival theory as a main topic and material for their work.

This course will give a thorough insight into the processes of documenting, archiving - and potentially preserving, performative and ephemeral art. The course will take both a theoretical and practical approach to the topic, going into depth with case studies of, for example, digital, net-based art, performance art, conceptual art as well as sound- and time-based works. These will be approached from the independent curator and artist's point of view as well as from the institution, to discuss and give solutions and methods for a useful documentation, archival and preservation practice.

*Video conferences every Thursday at 7pm Central European Time. Recordings available in case you miss a live session!

- Duration: Nov 9 - 30, 2017
- Application deadline: Nov 6, 2017
- Lecturer: Tina Madsen
- Participation fee: 148 EUR



Week 1: Introduction to the field
•Why document, preserve and archive art?
•A historical overview and distinction of the disciplines
•From object to dynamic processes
•The challenge of ephemerality
•The performative
•What to use archives and collections for as cultural producers and artists?

Week 2: The archive
• The archive in a historical perspective
• Archival theory
• Institutional approaches to archiving
• The move away from chronology
• Artistic approaches and use of archives as material and theme

Week 3: Documentation
• Methods to use for documentation
• Performance art: capturing the moment
• Re-creation and re-enactment as artistic genres
• Digital art: software as performance instruction
• Sound and time-based art capturing
• Documenting the exchange between work and audience

Week 4: Preservation
• Preservation methods used in institutions today
• Variable media initiatives
• The performance document and remains as artworks
• Digital art and Internet art preservation
• Notation and score-based works / conceptual art
• Reconstruction of artworks
• Documentation instead of preservation – when other strategies fail
• A dynamic approach to preservation
• Experimental strategies – challenging the formats