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Towards a critical art librarianship conference

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Gustavo Grandal Montero slides

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Towards a critical art librarianship conference

  1. 1. Activist documentation: Recordings and the African- Caribbean, Asian & African Art in Britain Archive Towards a critical (art) librarianship: theories & practices University of the Arts London 25 May 2018 Gustavo Grandal Montero Academic Support Librarian
  2. 2. 2 Activist documentation: past, present and future • Many important histories of activist practices in (art) libraries and archives, within and outside institutional frameworks • Examples relevant as theoretical and practical precedents, to inform current practice and debate on critical and radical practices • Need to bring this historical work into present by re-activating the collections and their wider context
  3. 3. 3 The African-Caribbean, Asian & African Art in Britain Archive • Histories of activist practices in libraries and archives, within and outside institutional frameworks • Examples relevant as theoretical and practical precedents, inform current practice and debate on critical and radical practices • Need to bring these historical work into present by re-activating the collections and their wider context
  4. 4. 4 Recordings Compiled and edited by Melanie Keen and Liz Ward Co-published by Iniva (created in 1995) and Chelsea College of Art in 1996 Digitised in 2018 (CC Attribution-NonCommercial)
  5. 5. 5 A Conversation about Recordings
  6. 6. 6 Re-activating the Archive • Increase in use, new interest by researchers and curators, e.g. exhibition loans and publications • Expanding work with courses and use in curriculum • Collaboration with SU and other students, including some active in initiatives to de-colonise the curriculum, etc. • Range of projects including a reading group, exhibitions, digitisation and a film
  7. 7. 8 Re-activating the Archive: Reading Collections • Key initiative: new reading group from 2016/17 • Co-led by Rahul Patel and Gustavo Grandal Montero • “All the readings are taken from the Archive, and participants will gain an understanding of the reasons for its establishment, its content, and the significance of primary documentation and its curation in relation to the representation of potentially marginalised groups. They represent critical arguments, and relate to important exhibitions, publications and other interventions in Black British art in the 1980s. Participants get a chance to learn more about existing primary source materials and the range of possibilities of research into Black British art in the 1980s.”

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