Making Sense of Historic PhotographicCollections on Flickr The Commons:Institutional and User PerspectivesBronwen Colquhou...
• In what ways does Flickr TheCommons facilitate knowledgeconstruction around historicphotographic collections?• And how i...
Curate the Collection at the National MaritimeMuseum, (April – May 2012)http://www.flickr.com/photos/nationalmaritimemuseu...
My LOC Favorites at the Library of Congress(June - August 2012)http://www.flickr.com/photos/library_of_congress/sets/72157...
Uncovering Archives Photography at Tyne andWear Archives and Museums, (Nov – Jan 2013)http://www.flickr.com/photos/twm_new...
“Social ideas cannot existwithout physical content, butphysical objects aremeaningless without socialcontent”(Pearce, 1992...
The museum as:• an “institutional and spatial site whichstrongly encourages certain kinds oftheorizing”• an institutional ...
The “Technologies” of knowledgeconstruction• Architectural and decorativemanipulation of space• Selection, ordering and pl...
Knowledge Construction on Flickr:Two Components• The „technologies‟ evident within theframework of Flickr The Commons• The...
Selection, Ordering and Placing ofObjects• Groups–users assemble, classify and curatephotographs according to shared inter...
Interpretive Materials• Tags- individuals interpret andunderstand photographs in differentways• Comments - new contexts an...
Knowledge Construction on Flickr:Two Components• The „technologies‟ evident within theframework of Flickr The Commons• The...
1. The Aesthetic and TechnicalMerit of Photographs
“First of all it was the images that struckme immediately or created,not exactly the wow factor, but imagesthat caught my ...
Chicago, Illinois. In the waiting room of the Union Station - Library of Congress
“Why this? Ain‟t it obvious? Noexplanation needed”
2. The Relationship Betweenthe Past and the Present
[Objects] have the power, in some sense, to carry thepast into the present by virtue of the „real‟ relationshipto past eve...
HM Floating Dock, Medway - Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums
Photograph by rolleipp1
Photograph by rolleipp1
“As we pass everyday structures we takelittle note until they are gone. Theselong gone structures got me thinking ifthey w...
3. The De- and Re-Contextualization ofPhotographs
The Baron AberdareIncident- National Maritime Museum
Image 27 from a photograph album of presentations to shipyard workers, social events andlaunches - Tyne and Wear Archives ...
Image 22 from a photograph album of presentations to shipyard workers, social events andlaunches - Tyne and Wear Archives ...
Photograph by Andy Martin
“This is a response to an album of staff photosfrom JL Thompson‟sshipyard... My aim was toreturn some of these elements ba...
Key Findings• Flickr‟s core functionalities draw upon or“remediate” traditional museologicaltechnologies of knowledge cons...
b.r.colquhoun@newcastle.ac.uk
MW2013: B. Colquhoun, Making Sense of Historic Photographic Collections on Flickr The Commons: Institutional and User Pers...
MW2013: B. Colquhoun, Making Sense of Historic Photographic Collections on Flickr The Commons: Institutional and User Pers...
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MW2013: B. Colquhoun, Making Sense of Historic Photographic Collections on Flickr The Commons: Institutional and User Perspectives

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Conference presentation from Museums and the Web 2013, Portland, Oregon
17-20 April 2013

Published in: Art & Photos
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  • MW2013: B. Colquhoun, Making Sense of Historic Photographic Collections on Flickr The Commons: Institutional and User Perspectives

    1. 1. Making Sense of Historic PhotographicCollections on Flickr The Commons:Institutional and User PerspectivesBronwen ColquhounPhD Researcher, Newcastle University
    2. 2. • In what ways does Flickr TheCommons facilitate knowledgeconstruction around historicphotographic collections?• And how is this process different toa cultural institution?
    3. 3. Curate the Collection at the National MaritimeMuseum, (April – May 2012)http://www.flickr.com/photos/nationalmaritimemuseum/sets/72157629833584010/
    4. 4. My LOC Favorites at the Library of Congress(June - August 2012)http://www.flickr.com/photos/library_of_congress/sets/72157631581164451/
    5. 5. Uncovering Archives Photography at Tyne andWear Archives and Museums, (Nov – Jan 2013)http://www.flickr.com/photos/twm_news/sets/72157632680824846/
    6. 6. “Social ideas cannot existwithout physical content, butphysical objects aremeaningless without socialcontent”(Pearce, 1992: 21)
    7. 7. The museum as:• an “institutional and spatial site whichstrongly encourages certain kinds oftheorizing”• an institutional agent that constructsknowledge through the “orchestration ofvarious interrelated media”(Whitehead, 2009)
    8. 8. The “Technologies” of knowledgeconstruction• Architectural and decorativemanipulation of space• Selection, ordering and placing ofobjects• Placement and content ofinterpretive materials(Whitehead, 2009)
    9. 9. Knowledge Construction on Flickr:Two Components• The „technologies‟ evident within theframework of Flickr The Commons• The key interests and motivations ofFlickr users and how are they framedthrough these technologies
    10. 10. Selection, Ordering and Placing ofObjects• Groups–users assemble, classify and curatephotographs according to shared interests• Galleries–users assemble, classify andcurate photographs according to personalinterests• Favorites - replicates the act of collecting
    11. 11. Interpretive Materials• Tags- individuals interpret andunderstand photographs in differentways• Comments - new contexts andnarratives for photographs• Notes – anecdotal information andfactual content• Sharing Tools– de- and re-contextualisation of photographs online
    12. 12. Knowledge Construction on Flickr:Two Components• The „technologies‟ evident within theframework of Flickr The Commons• The key interests and motivations ofFlickr users and how are they framedthrough these technologies
    13. 13. 1. The Aesthetic and TechnicalMerit of Photographs
    14. 14. “First of all it was the images that struckme immediately or created,not exactly the wow factor, but imagesthat caught my eye and peakedmy curiosity and had an impact.”
    15. 15. Chicago, Illinois. In the waiting room of the Union Station - Library of Congress
    16. 16. “Why this? Ain‟t it obvious? Noexplanation needed”
    17. 17. 2. The Relationship Betweenthe Past and the Present
    18. 18. [Objects] have the power, in some sense, to carry thepast into the present by virtue of the „real‟ relationshipto past events.(Pearce, 1992)In the context of memory institutions, collectivememory commonly refers to a shared remembrance ofpast (public) events, enabled either by individualssharing objects such as pictures or stories with others toenhance social cohesion in communities, or byinstitutional decisions (e.g. museums, archives) toexpose such objects to the public eye.(Van Dijck, 2010)
    19. 19. HM Floating Dock, Medway - Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums
    20. 20. Photograph by rolleipp1
    21. 21. Photograph by rolleipp1
    22. 22. “As we pass everyday structures we takelittle note until they are gone. Theselong gone structures got me thinking ifthey were still amongst us, dottedthroughout the landscape, in some formor another. Represented here is theMedway floating dock, placed in aposition that commuters to Newcastleoften pass with littlethought, superimposed on the Bykerbypass.”(rolleimpp1, 2012)
    23. 23. 3. The De- and Re-Contextualization ofPhotographs
    24. 24. The Baron AberdareIncident- National Maritime Museum
    25. 25. Image 27 from a photograph album of presentations to shipyard workers, social events andlaunches - Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums
    26. 26. Image 22 from a photograph album of presentations to shipyard workers, social events andlaunches - Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums
    27. 27. Photograph by Andy Martin
    28. 28. “This is a response to an album of staff photosfrom JL Thompson‟sshipyard... My aim was toreturn some of these elements back to where theyoriginated. The photo was taken on the RiverWear very close to where Thompsons used tobe, with the path in the picture reminiscent of alaunch slipway. I modified the TV to allow one ofmy favourite images from the album to bephysically added and lit from inside. It was shoton Ilford Delta 100 - no digital processing besidesdust removal and levels/toning.”(Andy Martin, 2012)
    29. 29. Key Findings• Flickr‟s core functionalities draw upon or“remediate” traditional museologicaltechnologies of knowledge construction• Technologies that contribute to knowledgeconstruction on The Commons substantiate thekey interests and motivations that generatemeaning around photographic collections• Collections are largely understood as a result ofthe participatory and interactive frameworkwithin which The Commons operates.
    30. 30. b.r.colquhoun@newcastle.ac.uk

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