Edited by Jennifer Peterson
TABLE OF CONTENTS
3. Commercial Acquisitions
5. Institutions and Organizations
7. Online Resources
• Hitchcock’s The Ring Streamed Live Online on The Space
Alfred Hitchcock’s boxing melodrama The Ring (1927) an early highlight in the BFI’s summer-long The Genius of Hitchcock project, streamed live on July 13, 2012 thanks to an on-demand digital arts service called The Space. Online viewers across the UK were able to share the experience of seeing one of the director’s finest early films newly restored.
The result of a collaboration between Arts Council England and the BBC, The Spaceprovides an online window onto the wealth of cultural experiences being offered this summer as part of the London 2012 Festival. Available free via the internet, smartphones and connected TV, the initiative will bring the best of a summer of arts directly to people’s homes andhandsets.
The story of two boxers whose love rivalry plays out between the ropes, The Ring was streamed live during the theatrical screening at Hackney Empire, which included the premiere performance of a new jazz score for the film by SowetoKinch.
"We are very excited that the Arts Council has supported the BFI with an award to give everyone in the UK a chance to enjoy a fantastic screening of Hitchcock’s The Ring,” says Heather Stewart, the BFI’s Cultural Director. "Streaming the live event on The Space is an exciting new initiative, allowing us to connect we hope with a wide range of audiences interested in the arts, who otherwise may not easily have come to a screening of this restored Hitchcock silentfilm.”
In this virtual space, Hitchcock rubbed shoulders with everyone from Shakespeare to Berlioz, with a full-length performance of King Lear by the Belarus Free Theatre and a livestream from the Royal Opera House of David McVicar’s innovative production of Berlioz’s Les Troyens among the pick of this week’s offerings. Says Dan Phelan from the Arts Council, "The Space is becoming this summer’s go-to online destination to enjoy, discover and catch up on the UK’s incredibly rich and vibrant arts and culture scene and to take part in major events such as the BFI’s Genius of Hitchcockseason.” The Space can be accessed at http://thespace.org/.
• Rockefeller Archive Center to House Ford Foundation Archive
The Rockefeller Archive Center, repository for the records of the Rockefeller family, Rockefeller philanthropies, and other nonprofit organizations, announced on April 9, 2012 that it will house the archive of the Ford Foundation, the nation’s second-largest philanthropy.
The Rockefeller Archive Center, which was created in 1975 in a Rockefeller family property called Hillcrest, is headquartered in Pocantico Hills in Westchester County. The Center already houses the archives of a broad range of nonprofit organizations, including the Social Science Research Council, the Asia Society and the Foundation Center.
The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization, with more than $10.5 billion in assets and $500 million in annual giving. It works with courageous people on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.
Jack Meyers, president of the Rockefeller Archive Center, said, "Adding the historical records of the Ford Foundation to the numerous foundation records already held by the Archive Center will enable researchers from around the world to have an unprecedented look, under one roof, at the origins and ongoing achievements of many of the most important nonprofit institutions in the twentieth century.”
Luis Ubiñas, president of the Ford Foundation, said, "Our partnership with the Rockefeller Archive Center ensures that the foundation's records enjoy the highest quality organization and preservation while continuing to make our public collections accessible to a broad international community of scholars, students and professionals studying philanthropy and social change.”
The Ford Foundation Archive documents the Foundation’s extensive international leadership in economic development, human rights and microfinance, as well as major U.S. movements, including the environment, civil rights, legal aid, and women's rights, and such domestic challenges as urban development and reproductive health.
The records of the Ford Foundation join a collection in which scholars can currently research the origins of such hallmark organizations as the University of Chicago, the Museum of Modern Art, Lincoln Centerfor the Performing Arts, Colonial Williamsburg, Spelman College, the Asia Society and Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital. In addition, the Rockefeller Archive Center houses the records of the building of Rockefeller Center, Riverside Church and the Cloisters; the creation of National Parks such as Acadia, Jackson Hole, Grand Teton, Great Smokey Mountains, and Virgin Islands and the early history of organizations as diverse as the League of Nations, the London School of Economics, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, and the Mount Palomar Observatory.In addition to transferring the archive, the Ford Foundation has awarded the Rockefeller Archive Center a grant of $3.2 million to store and care for the collection and to maintain its accessibility to a broad international community of researchers.
The Ford Foundation Archive is the most recent non-Rockefeller family addition to the Rockefeller Archive Center, which has become the premier center in the U.S. for documentary research on foundations and philanthropy. The Rockefeller Archive Center originally brought together the records of the Rockefeller family and major Rockefeller philanthropies, including the Rockefeller Foundation, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the Rockefeller University. In 1985, the Archive Center board decided to accept the records of non-Rockefeller philanthropic and non-profit organizations.
The records of the Commonwealth Fund and the Russell Sage Foundation were the first non-Rockefeller records to be added to the collection, and in subsequent years, they were joined by the records of the Social Science Research Council, the John and Mary Markle Foundation, the Lucille P. Markey Charitable Trust, the Charles A. Culpeper Foundation, the Foundation for Child Development, the Near East Foundation, the William T. Grant Foundation, the Woodrow Wilson National Foundation, the Asian Cultural Council, the Trust for Mutual Understanding, the Population Council, the Trilateral Commission, the Asia Society, the Foundation Center and many other non-profit organizations.
Over the past 35 years, some 6,000 researchers have visited the Rockefeller Archive Center. In recent years, about 300 researchers have visited each year, while the staff has responded annually to an additional 800 to 900 inquiries from offsite researchers. Researchers working in the archives are senior scholars and graduate students, journalists and documentary filmmakers, local historians, genealogists and members of the general public. Many have come from Europe, Latin America and Asia.
Their work in the archives has yielded some 700 books, more than 900 articles, and hundreds of dissertations. An Archive Center survey in 2001 concluded that articles drawing on its materials had been published in no fewer than 238 journals around the world, testimony to the Center’s global scholarly reach. See www.rockarch.org/.
3. COMMERCIAL ACQUISITIONS
• Digidev Group Inks Deal to Launch Classic and Silent Feature Films Online
Digital Development Group Corp., a.k.a."Digidev,” a development stage company aiming to offer an in-depth portfolio of content for Internet TV distribution, announced on May 17, 2012 the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding("MOU”) as a step towards signing a licensing agreement that will provide access to a culturally significant body of silent and classic cinematography including legendary titles and performances from the golden era of film.
The agreement was reached with David H. Shepard, a noted archivist and film preservationist who has spent a significant portion of his career amassing a catalogue of extraordinary and exceptionally restored feature films from the early years of world cinema. He is a major influence on the archival film movement in the United States for the past 45 years. He spent thirty-four years teaching cinema at a number of prestigious university institutions and then as special projects officer of the Directors Guild of America for twelve years. He co-produced the Academy-Award winning Precious Images (1986) and several other films as well as documentaries for commercial and public television.Additionally, he has managed the theatre and archive departments of The American Film Institute, and served as Vice President of Blackhawk Films. Since 1983, David has been a voting member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and he enjoys an impressive list of awards honoring his exceptional career achievements.
Mr. Shepard states, "Releasing film classics in a technology never even dreamed of when these films were produced is very exciting.Digidev’s commitment to launch both a Silent Classic channel as well as a Classic channel will expose the Internet universe to the gems of world cinema. I have known some of the senior people at Digidev for decades and they share my passion.”
Digidev is targeting the rapidly expanding and revolutionary OTT technology arena in order to facilitate the online delivery of movies, games & apps to millions of desktops, mobile and smart TV devices around the World."OTT” or Over-The-Top Home Entertainment Media targets DVD players, video game consoles, mobile products and Smart TVs with built-in Internet connectivity. These devices piggyback on existing network services in consumers’ homes or offices, pull content from the Internet and deliver it to their TV set or display unit. It's referred to as "over-the-top” because the service rides "on top” of the Internet connection subscribers already use.
Using Digidev’s innovative proprietary technology, content providers will be able to reach previously "un-reachable” audiences with an easy to use, multi-purpose platform resulting in the ultimate engagement connecting a rapidly exploding audience of new online viewers to a vast network of content owners, developers and producers.
Martin W. Greenwald, CEO of Digidev, adds, "David Shepard has amassed an extraordinary library of classic films dating back almost 100 years. Bringing these titles to the OTT Internet space will give millions of people worldwide the opportunity to share and enjoy these treasures. I am so pleased that David has entered into this agreement with Digidev. Our goal is to secure a diverse roster of interesting and truly great programming for this exciting new consumer technology and The Film Preservation Associates library is a very welcome addition.”
Expanded details of the Company's plans and approach are now available online at www.digidevgroup.com where more information will be posted as it becomes available.
• Hark Inks Deal to Deliver Audio Clips from Universal’s Film Library
Hark will gain access to nearly 100 films in Universal’s vast film library and stream digital audio clips online. As a result, some of the industry’s most iconic movie moments, from
classic films such as Animal House, The Blues Brothers, and The Breakfast Club to modern blockbusters such as Bridesmaids and Fast Five, can be accessed and shared on www.hark.com.
Hark is the world’s largest platform for pop culture sound bites. Hark has grown into one of the 10 largest entertainment/movie sites on the Web (comScore, 2012) with more than 50 million visitors per month worldwide. Content from Hark is both viral and interactive and creates a powerful, compelling entertainment experience for consumers and an attractive audience platform for advertisers. Founded in 2007 by David Aronchick and Fouad ElNaggar, Hark is headquartered in Seattle.
Read the story here: www.marketwatch.com/story/hark-inks-deal-to-deliver-audio-clips-from-universals-film-library-2012-06-07
• A Report on the Academy Film Archive’s Film-to-Film Preservation Project
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has undertaken a unique expansion in film preservation. As the rise of digital technology drastically reduces the availability of film stock, the project accelerates the work of the Academy Film Archive to acquire and create new archival film masters and prints from at-risk elements. Under the banner "Film-to-Film,” the $2 million initiative, approved by the Academy’s Board of Governors, focuses largely on Academy Award®-winning and nominated films from across motion picture history, including works made as recently as the 1990s.
"This is a moment of great transition for our industry, and we are responding to the urgency of that moment,” said Dawn Hudson, Academy CEO. "By increasing our preservation efforts now, we are building a vital pipeline of films and film elements that we will not only safeguard, but also make available for audiences well into the future.”
Until recently, the mass production of film stock required for theatrical exhibition made this resource widely available and affordable for preservation work. However, as the industry continues its rapid transition to digital technology, film prints and the film stock required to create them are becoming increasingly scarce. The Academy’s Film-to-Film project is intended to take advantage of the remaining availability of celluloid stock to preserve a diverse slate of important works on film. At the same time, the initiative also ensures that high quality film elements will exist for easier, more cost-effective digitization in the future.
"Film-to-Film represents an extraordinary commitment to preserving our film heritage on film, but it’s also a part of our digital future,” noted Academy Film Archive director Mike Pogorzelski. "Once the industry has resolved the challenges still posed by digital preservation, including the lack of standard file formats and continuous technology migration, we will be able to scan these films without relying on brittle, fragile, or deteriorated elements.”
Between 1992 and the launch of the Film-to-Film project, the Academy Film Archive had preserved approximately 1,000 titles. Under Film-to-Film initiative, which began in 2011, the Archive has preserved or acquired about 300 more, including feature films, documentaries, experimental works, shorts and the home movies of Hollywood luminaries. A number of the initiative’s preservation projects are being conducted in partnership with other institutions, including the UCLA Film &Television Archive and the British Film Institute, as well as other archives in countries including Hungary, Norway, Sweden and Japan.
The initiative’s most significant feature film preservation efforts include Sleuth (1972), which earned four Academy Award nominations; The Cardinal(1963), which earned six nominations including Best Director and Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Otto Preminger and John Huston, respectively; and Cock of the Air (1932), a comedy produced by Howard Hughes prior to the advent of the Production Code Administration.
Academy Award-nominated shorts under-going preservation includes Saul Bass’s landmark Notes on the Popular Arts (1977) and four short subject comedies from 1933 and 1935 currently on loan from the Library of Congress. Notable silent films include The Mark of Zorro (1920), featuring Douglas Fairbanks; The Blazing Trail (1921), which marked the screen debut of silent star Mary Philbin; and A Famous Duel (1911), a short directed by industry pioneer Edwin S. Porter.
Efforts are also underway to preserve a number of Academy Award-nominated documentary shorts including The Odds Against(1966) and Naked Yoga (1975), and the Oscar®-winning Young at Heart (1987), which chronicles two octogenarians’ romance.
The project is preserving a host of experimental and avant-garde works by such filmmakers as Stan Brakhage, Will Hindle, Nina Menkes, Penelope Spheeris and others; and reels of home movies from the collections of Steve McQueen, Esther Williams, William Wyler, Sam Fuller and James Wong Howe. Other reels being preserved document a range of subjects that includes Grauman’s Chinese Theater in 1926, Japanese-American life in Southern California prior to World War II, and behind-the-scenes footage from My Blue Heaven (1950), The Prisoner of Zenda (1937) and The Thomas Crown Affair (1968).
As part of the Film-to-Film project, the Academy has acquired a diverse slate of 35mm prints including 42nd Street(1933), The Asphalt Jungle (1950), Barry Lyndon (1975), Grease (1978), The Princess Bride (1987) and others.
Dedicated to the preservation, restoration, documentation, exhibition and study of motion pictures, the Academy Film Archive is home to one of the most diverse and extensive motion picture collections in the world, including the personal collections of such filmmakers as Alfred Hitchcock, Cecil B. DeMille, George Stevens, Fred Zinnemann, Sam Peckinpah and Jim Jarmusch.
For more information about the Academy Film Archive, visit www.oscars.org/filmarchive.
• National Film Preservation Foundation Awards 35 Preservation Grants
On June 12, 2012, the National Film Preservation Foundation announced grants to save 60 films, including Tod Browning’s underworld melodrama Drifting(1923), starring Wallace Beery and the 15-year-old Anna May Wong, and a newly discovered film by composer John Cage and sculptor Richard Lippold, The Sun Project (1956). Awards went to 35 institutions located across 22 states.
Also slated for preservation are Liferaft Earth (1969) by Robert Frank and Danny Lyon; a 1924 tour of the Showley Brothers candy factory in San Diego; footage of the Taos Art Colony in 1917; Julie Dash’s Illusions (1982) about a Hollywood executive who passes as white; That Other Girl(1913) with Pearl White; the only known moving image footage of novelist Ford Maddox Ford; the comic Parson Sue (1913), about a female minister who goes West; The Instant Guide to Synanon, made to woo corporate supporters; the student-film-turned-cult-classic 33 Yo-Yo Tricks(1976); abstractions created by Jordon Belson for the Vortex Concerts; two profiles of Chicago’s Vice Lords gang; documentaries about the Navajo, Apache, Yaqui, and Zuni; home movies by Slavko Vorkapich, the Everly Brothers, a Penobscot tribal elder, a Pullman porter, an American foreign service officer stationed in 1930s China, and two brothers touring Europe on the eve of World War II; and other historically significant American films unlikely to survive without public support. For a full list, visit www.filmpreservation.org.
"Who would believe that a film by John Cage would turn up in a storage facility or that a Pearl White comedy would be uncovered in a mislabeled film can? I am constantly amazed at the treasures that come to light through the National Film Preservation Foundation’s preservation grants,” said Paolo Cherchi Usai, Senior Curator at George Eastman House. "And, of course, Eastman House is thrilled by the grant to preserve Tod Browning’s Drifting. Using complementary material from other collecting institutions, we plan to preserve the feature with new English-language intertitles and make it available to American audiences for the first time in decades.”
The NFPF preservation grants target newsreels, silent-era films, documentaries, culturally important home movies, avant-garde films, and endangered independent productions that fall under the radar of commercial preservation programs. The awards provide support to create a film preservation master and two access copies of each work. Films saved through the NFPF programs are made available to the public for on-site research and are seen widely through screenings, exhibits, DVDs, television broadcasts, and the Internet.
Since its creation by Congress in 1996, the NFPF has provided preservation support to 248 institutions and saved more than 1,946 films and collections through grants and collaborative projects. The NFPF also publishes the award-winning Treasures from American Film Archives DVD series, which makes available rare films preserved by public and nonprofit archives that have not been commercially distributed. The NFPF receives federal money through the Library of Congress to distribute as grants but raises all operating and project funding from other sources.
The National Film Preservation Foundation is the nonprofit organization created by the U.S. Congress to help save America’s film heritage. The NFPF is the charitable affiliate of the National Film Preservation Board of the Library of Congress. For the complete list of projects supported by the NFPF, visit the NFPF Web site: www.filmpreservation.org.
• John Huston’s Let There Be Light Restored and Available Online Summer 2012
The National Archives’s new restoration of Let There Be Light (1946), John Huston’s controversial World War II documentary about the rehabilitation of psychologically scarred combat veterans, screened on the National Film Preservation Foundation’s website from May 24 through the end of August 2012. The free presentation was made possible by Fandor.
The third in the World War II trilogy commissioned from Academy Award-winning director John Huston by the US Army Signal Corps, Let There Be Lightfollows the treatment of emotionally traumatized GIs from their admission at a racially integrated psychiatric hospital to their reentry into civilian life. Made decades before post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) entered the vocabulary, the documentary was created to help Americans understand the challenges faced by returning veterans and to demonstrate that the psychological wounds of war, though very real, could heal through therapy.
Huston’s compassionate portrayal was too much for the top military brass, which pulled the film shortly before its premiere at the Museum of Modern Art and commissioned a replacement in which white actors took all the speaking roles. Let There Be Light was first shown publicly in December 1980, after a chorus of Hollywood leaders, joined by Vice President Walter Mondale, persuaded the Secretary of the Army to authorize its release.
The restoration was be available for free streaming and downloading and presented with extras providing historical context, including:
- The Battle of San Pietro (1945), the second film in Huston’s WWII trilogy
- The Reawakening (1919), about the treatment of returning WWI veterans
- A documentary about the National Archives’ film preservation operations
- Program notes about the film and its restoration
Let There Be Light was added to the Library of Congress’s National Film Registry in 2010. "The mental trauma of the soldiers depicted in the Huston documentary made visceral to my generation, which came of age after WWII and Korea, just what is the cost in individual lives of any war, even of a ‘good war,’” commented John Bailey, who represents the American Society of Cinematographers on the National Film Preservation Board. "Let There Be Light is as timely and, sadly, as painful to watch today as it was more than sixty years ago. Its shadow looms over the wars of Iraq and Afghanistan.”
The motion picture holds a special place in documentary film history for its almost unprecedented use of unscripted interviews. It’s only now, with the new soundtrack restoration, that these interviews—many with battle-weary soldiers who can only mumble or whisper personal stories—can be heard with their full emotional force. The services to restore the soundtrack for Let There Be Light were donated by Chace Audio by Deluxe through the NFPF grant program. Hosting the premiere is Fandor, a curated on-demand movie service for independent and international narrative and documentary films.
The National Archives and Records Administration is the independent federal agency that preserves and shares with the public records that trace the story of our nation, government, and the American people. From the Declaration of Independence to accounts of ordinary Americans, the holdings of the National Archives directly touch the lives of millions of people. The National Archives carries out its mission through a nationwide network of archives, records centers, and Presidential Libraries, and on the Internet at www.archives.gov.
• Fandor Supports Web Premiere of Hitchcock’s The White Shadow on NFPF Site
The National Film Preservation Foundation has announced the generous pledge from Fandor.com, the curated on-demand movie service, to host the web premiere of The White Shadow, the lost Hitchcock film discovered at the New Zealand Film Archive in 2010. The free program will screen on the National Film Preservation Foundation’s website beginning in mid November 2012 and run for three months.
The White Shadow (1924) is the earliest surviving feature linked to Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980), the film’s assistant director, art director, editor, and writer. Directed by Graham Cutts, the silent-era feature is a wild, atmospheric melodrama starring Betty Compson in a dual role as twin sisters, one angelic and the other "without a soul.” The first three reels were identified by the NFPF among the cache of American nitrate prints at the New Zealand Film Archive in 2011. No other copy is known to exist.
Fandor’s gift matches donations received through an Internet drive organized by the 2012For the Love of Film: The Film Preservation Blogathon. Bringing together more than 100 film fans from five continents, the event raised $6,600, which will be enough to fund the creation of a digital copy and the recording of the musical score originally created by Michael M. Mortilla for the gala re-premiere screening in September 2010 at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The pledge from Fandor will enable the NFPF to move ahead with the presentation. "Fandor was created to enable audiences to experience important but difficult-to-find films,” said Fandor co-founder Jonathan Marlow. "Not everyone has the ability to attend archival screenings of The White Shadow in Los Angeles, Washington or New York. We’re thrilled to collaborate with the NFPF, the Academy Film Archive, and the New Zealand Film Archive in making this fascinating discovery available to Hitchcock fans around the world.”
The White Shadow was preserved to film at Park Road Post Production in New Zealand, under the direction of the NZFA. A new preservation master and exhibition print was sent to the Academy Film Archive. The film is among 176 early titles recovered and sent to the United States through a multi-year preservation collaboration of the New Zealand Film Archive / Ngā Kaitiaki O Ngā Taonga Whitiāhua, the American film community, and the National Film Preservation Foundation. Some 70 percent are thought to survive nowhere else. For more about the project, click here.
Fandor is the leading on-demand independent film service, expanding the audience for independent films and offering an innovative new distribution platform that shares revenue with filmmakers. Fandor’s rich editorial environment and active community of film fans makes it easy and rewarding to discover movies from its handpicked library of independent and international films. Founded in 2011 in San Francisco by entertainment and technology veterans, Fandor offers unlimited access to its catalogue of thousands of feature films and shorts for $10 per month. For more information, please visit www.fandor.com.
• Restoration of Shirley Clarke’s The Connection Receives Theatrical Premiere
A new print of Shirley Clarke’s first feature, The Connection (1962), released by Milestone Film and preserved by the UCLA Film & Television Archive, premiered at the IFC Center in Greenwich Village, New York on May 4, 2012. The restored film will play in theaters nationwide in 2012, and will be released on DVD in 2013. The Connection is the first release of "Project Shirley,” a four-year mission by Milestone to explore the life and work of Shirley Clarke by partnering with archives around the world to bring out the best versions of her films. Milestone has already acquired four of Clarke’s features, more than a dozen of her short films, and has gained access to her home movies, letters, and files. For more information, see www.milestonefilms.com/products/the-connection.
5. INSTITUTIONS AND ORGANIZATIONS
• Indiana University Libraries Film Archive Digitizes 197 Historic Educational Films
From a woodchuck in doll clothes to a defense of the Korean War, 197 newly digitized films from the Indiana University Libraries’ educational film collection capture numerous aspects of American life from the 1940s through the 1980s. Covering topics as diverse as microbiology, filmmaking, pioneer life, and drinking responsibly, these IU-produced 16mm films, originally intended as instructional materials, now offer a readily available primary source for historical and cultural insights. The films can be viewed online through digital streaming from the IU Libraries Film Archive at go.iu.edu/5hB.
The ongoing digitization project, which has prioritized 16mm films at the greatest risk for deterioration, has invested several years and more than $35,000 in preserving these historical films in digital format. The IU Digital Library Program has now made these films available to the public and searchable through an online interface. Drop-down menus describe featured topics, places, creators, genres, and years of production, while a search function scans film titles and descriptions for keywords.
"Though educational films can now be viewed as amusing, cultural relics from another era, many of these films serve as important historical documents from the past,” said IU Libraries Film Archivist Rachael Stoeltje. "We have several ‘day in the life’ films that show school children of different ages, technology-related films depicting what was then state-of-the-art photography and filmography, and fascinating films about different aspects of college life. You can watch films like Your Daughter at I.U., which attempts to explain some of the reasons a woman would attend college, and the ‘Inner City Dweller’ series that depicts some of the urban social challenges of the 1970s.”
Other notable films include Booze and You’s, a 1977 primer on drinking responsibly, which generated a great deal of controversy in its characterization of alcohol consumption among college students. The Fraternity Idea, produced in 1958, features former IU President Herman Wells recalling his fraternity years, while Chucky Lou: The Story of a Woodchuck introduces viewers to a rescued woodland creature who allows children to dress her in doll clothes. Several films also relate directly to the history of IU, such as the 1961 film Presenting IU and the 1943 film IU Goes to War. Additionally, two newly digitized films from 1984 feature acclaimed IU film scholar and Chancellor’s Professor Emeritus James Naremore. He directed A Nickel for the Movies, which serves as an introduction to film theory, and stars in Having Something Printed?, which explains the process by which printed documents are prepared and produced.
The IU Libraries Film Archive will continue to digitize films from its collections of more than 55,000 film reels. The archive contains one of the most extensive collections of historic educational films in existence, with more than 48,000 films intended for classroom use. The archive also houses the Bradley Film Collection, one of the largest personal film collections ever assembled, several films of which have also been digitized by the IU Libraries.
For more information, visit the IU Libraries Film Archive online at www.libraries.iub.edu/filmarchor contact Rachael Stoeltje at firstname.lastname@example.org.
• George Eastman House Launches Certificate Program in Photographic Preservation and Collections Management
George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film has announced the launch of a one-year certificate program in Photographic Preservation and Collections Management, an intensive eight-month, graduate-level immersion program for professionals, students, and independent scholars. This comprehensive combination of practical and classroom experience will be based in the unparalleled collections of Eastman House, the world’s oldest museum of photography. The program begins in September 2012.
Participants will have access to collections material, the Museum’s renowned library of photographica and state-of-the-art conservation lab, and internationally recognized faculty and staff. The program will encompass the history of photography and museum studies and train students in the practices of photographic preservation, collections management, photographic process identification, digital preservation, working with conservators, writing about photographs, photographic cataloguing within museum systems, and exhibition development.
"There is no other program like this anywhere else,” said Dr. Alison Nordström, Eastman House’s senior curator of photographs and head of faculty. "It is an amazing opportunity to engage directly with these wonderful objects and to work side-by-side with staff in a working museum. Students who earn this certificate will have a resumé comparable to one who has been working in the field for years.”
Collections of photographs are found not only in museums, but also galleries, auction houses, artist estates, universities, libraries, historical and corporate archives, and private collections. As the significance and value of these collections increase, so does the need for specially trained professionals who can document, organize, interpret, and care for the objects.
"My time at George Eastman House was key to coming to grips with the inner-workings of a cultural institution,” said Marc Boulay, photographic archivist in the Department of Special Collections at University of St. Andrews in Scotland. "Eastman House’s specialization in photographic media provided me with valuable insights into how this field differs from all others. Being mentored in this institution is a rare and valuable opportunity.”
The certificate in Photographic Preservation and Collections Management will prepare participants for positions working with varied collections, as an archivist, registrar, collections manager, gallery manager, or entry-level curator.
"People who have trained at George Eastman House are currently employed by museums and archives around the world,” Nordström said. "We’ve been training the next generation in the photographic field since our founding in 1947, but in this changing world of photography there is now a greater need for this type of formal, high-level education program.”
To apply: Applicants must possess an undergraduate degree or equivalent experience. Post-secondary education in the areas of art history and photography are preferred but not essential. Work-related experience in museum and archive collections is considered an asset. For international students, you must submit TOEFL scores if English is not your first language and Eastman House is authorized to issue J-1 student visas to qualified applicants. Tuition for the eight-month certificate program, which spans September to April, is $15,000.
For more information or to schedule a visit, please call (585) 271-3361 ext. 360 or email email@example.com. More information is online at http://education.eastmanhouse.org/PPCM/
George Eastman House also offers a two-year Master of Arts degree in Photographic Preservation and Collections Management, in collaboration with Ryerson University in Toronto. To learn more about that program, please visit www.imagearts.ryerson.ca/photopreservation.
• UCLA Film & Television Archive Announces New Head of Preservation
The UCLA Film & Television Archive has announced its new Head of Preservation. The position, which had been vacant for several years, has been filled by Scott MacQueen.
Scott comes to the archive with more than twenty years of experience overseeing and managing film and media restoration projects for major studios and media content holders worldwide. He is one of the select few in the field who have balanced the technical challenges of the laboratory and media suite with negotiating the studio system and pursuing his interests as a film historian, including an impressive record of publishing and lectures.
Scott has personally overseen numerous cooperative projects with major institutions and content holders, from private collectors and independent distributors such as Milestone Film & Video and The Cohen Film Collection, to major studios including Turner Entertainment, Paramount, and SONY. He has also partnered with all of the major archives, including the George Eastman House, Library of Congress, Museum of Modern Art, the BFI, and the Academy Film Archive.
He is a graduate of the New York University film program. After several years as a freelance filmmaker in various capacities, he joined Cine International Associates (a Division of Screen Gems) as a producer and production manager. In 1991, he joined the Walt Disney Company as Senior Manager for Film Restoration, where he successfully rebooted their moribund film preservation program. In 2003, he moved to Pro-Tek Media Preservation, a Division of Eastman Kodak Company.
Most recently, Scott joined UCLA Film & Television Archive to work on a preservation plan for the Carol and Ken Schultz-funded Laurel & Hardy project. Looking forward, he will be responsible for all aspects of the UCLA film preservation program as it makes the transition from analog to digital preservation technologies.
• Budget Cuts Severely Impact Libraries and Library and Archives Canada
The elimination of a national archives program and $1.7 million in funding will have a far-reaching and devastating impact on the preservation of Canada’s history for future generations, says Lara Wilson, a University of Victoria archivist. The elimination of the National Archival Development Program – and the government funds it distributes – will affect teachers, students, historians, genealogists, authors, filmmakers and others, said Wilson, who is also chairwoman of the Canadian Council of Archives. Read more at www.timescolonist.com/business/Program+devastating+archivist+says/6565340/story.html.
For a statement by the Canadian Library Association on these federal budget cuts, see "Canadian Library Association Dismayed By Impact of Budget Cuts on FederalLibraries” at http://clagov.wordpress.com/2012/05/02/cla-feds/.
• New Film Preservation Centre to be Built for Irish Film Institute at National University of Ireland, Maynooth
In November 2011, the IFI officially launched the IFI Irish Film Archive Preservation Fund to expand access to, and preservation of, the Irish national film archive collection. An innovative partnership with NUI Maynooth presented the IFI with a unique opportunity to build a new custom built Research and Preservation Centre on campus.
The Irish Film Institute, together with NUI Maynooth and key funding partners the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, announced on April 5, 2012 plans for the development of this new Preservation and Research Centre at NUI Maynooth. The shortfall in funding has now been met, enabling the realization of the Centre. The Centre will allow the IFI to ensure that future generations can continue to learn from, and enjoy, Ireland’s moving image heritage.
This will be the first project to come to fruition as a result of this Fund. Eve-Anne Cullinan, Chairperson of the IFI said: "This exciting project will not only provide a secure home for the IFI Irish Film Archive collections ensuring their safety for the future, but crucially will facilitate research into ways in which digital technology can ensure the collections are widely accessible for many years to come by people in Ireland and internationally.”
Professor Philip Nolan, President of NUI Maynooth, said, "It is a privilege for NUI Maynooth to be involved in the IFI Research and Preservation Centre. The IFI Irish Film Archive offers us unique insights into our culture, history and place in the world, and is a rich source for scholars and educators. We look forward to a long partnership between IFI and NUI Maynooth.”
James Hickey, Chief Executive, Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board said "Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board are delighted to support this initiative. The Archive is vitally important in collecting, preserving and documenting Ireland’s screen history.The new archive Preservation and Research Centre will ensure that Ireland’s film heritage will now be safe and accessible for years to come.”
The IFI Irish Film Archive is custodian of one of Ireland’s most remarkable resources – the nation’s film. The IFI collection spans over one hundred years of stories from everyday life to the great achievements of Ireland’s filmmakers on the global stage. Collectively this material tells Ireland’s artistic, social and political story over the last century as well as being a record of Irish film culture. Visit the IFI’s website at www.ifi.ie/.
• Film Preservationist Nancy Mysel Dies
Nancy Mysel, a film preservationist with the UCLA Film & Television Archive who was a leading specialist in restoring black-and-white movies in the film noir genre, died June 17 after an eight-year battle with metastatic breast cancer. She was 45. Mysel supervised the restoration of Joseph Losey’s The Prowler and Robert Parrish’s Cry Danger, noir films that were rediscovered.
"Nancy was a skilled and versatile preservationist and her loss has been, and will continue to be, profoundly felt by many on both a personal and professional level,” said Jan-Christopher Horak, director of the archive. Mysel began work as a film preservationist at UCLA in 2000 after having joined the archive the previous year.
Other film noir-related projects included the restoration and assembly, with Robert Gitt, of production outtakes from 1955 classic The Night of the Hunter and the restoration of Douglas Sirk’s Sleep My Love, Anthony Mann’s Strangers in the Night, Fritz Lang’s Cloak and Dagger and Edgar G. Ulmer’s Ruthless. Mysel’s restoration of the The Chase will premiere at the UCLA Festival of Preservation in March.
Mysel also did a considerable amount of work on non-noir projects, collaborating with organizations such as the Film Foundation, Sundance, Film Noir Foundation, the National Film Preservation Foundation and Outfest. Her eclectic output included George Stevens’ Penny Serenade, four films by pioneering female director Dorothy Arzner, documentaries and groundbreaking LGBT works.
Mysel was born in Paterson, N.J., graduated from Boston U.’s School of Communications and was assistant picture and sound editor for National Geographic in Washington, D.C., for seven years. She is survived by her parents, a brother and a sister.
• AMPAS Selects Acclaimed Architects Renzo Piano and Zoltan Pali for New Academy Museum
Award-winning architects Renzo Piano and Zoltan Pali will design the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced on May 30, 2012.
"Renzo’s track record of creating iconic cultural landmarks combined with Zoltan’s success in transforming historically significant buildings is a perfect marriage for a museum that celebrates the history and the future of the movies,” said Dawn Hudson, Academy CEO.
Piano, who in 1998 was awarded the Pritzker Prize – architecture’s highest honor – is the founder of the Renzo Piano Building Workshop. With offices in Paris, Genoa and New York, RPBW has been acclaimed for its international commissions. Piano’s significant design accomplishments include the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, the Central St. Giles Court in London, the Kansai International Airport Terminal in Osaka, the Menil Collection in Houston, and the headquarters of TheNew York Times.
Piano also designed the expansion of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), whose campus will include the upcoming Academy museum.
"We as architects make buildings that are portraits that represent our clients," said Piano. "The Academy museum will take the visitor through the back door of cinema, behind the curtain, and into moviemaking magic.”
Pali, a Los Angeles native, is the design principal and co-founder of Studio Pali Fekete architects (SPF:a). He has been lauded for his design of the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, for which SPF:a received a Los Angeles Business Council Architectural Award and an AIA Los Angeles "Next LA” Award. In addition, Pali is renowned for his Los Angeles-area restorations of the Greek Theatre, the Gibson Amphitheatre, and the Pantages Theatre, the latter earning SPF:a an LABC Award for Historic Preservation. For the firm’s work as the executive architects on the renovation and expansion of the Getty Villa museum, SPF:a received the AIA Los Angeles Presidential Award.
"It is an honor and privilege to work with the Academy in bringing to life a historic, iconic building that I love with the story of motion pictures,” said Pali.
The Museum Committee is composed of Academy governors Craig Barron, Jim Bissell, Gale Anne Hurd, Rob Friedman and Robert Rehme; Academy member Kathleen Kennedy and former president Sid Ganis; and Academy President Tom Sherak.
The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures will be established in the historic May Company building, now known as LACMA West. Opened in 1939, the building is a 325,000-square foot art moderne landmark located at the corner of Fairfax Avenue and Wilshire Boulevard.
• Il Cinema Ritrovato Highlights
The 26th annual Il Cinema Ritrovato, the renowned festival of restored and rediscovered films, took place from June 23-30, 2012 in Bologna, Italy. Organized by the Cineteca Bologna, the screening and event schedule was packed with over 300 films. Highlights included retrospectives on Lois Weber, Jean Grémillon, and Raoul Walsh, a tribute to Alma Reville, and too many films to list here, including Teinosuke Kinugasa’s Tsukigata Hanpeita (1925), Jacques Demy’s Lola (1961), Agnes Varda’s Documenteur(1981), Otto Preminger’s Bonjour Tristesse (1958), Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943), and a daily program of films from 100 years ago, along with panel discussions on cinephilia. For a complete listing of events, see www.cinetecadibologna.it/en/.
7. ONLINE RESOURCES
• Instant Cinema, Platform for Experimental Film, Video, and Computer Art, Now Online
Instant Cinema is a comprehensive platform for experimental film, video and computer art, making the best audio-visual work of artists of all generations available to a worldwide audience.
For many years, experimental films and art films were almost exclusively screened in museums and at film festivals. Instant Cinema aims to compensate for half a century of under-exposure of film/video and computer art by exhibiting some of the great classics of recent history, side by side with the work of today’s most talented media artists.
To maintain the highest possible degree of quality, Instant Cinema membership is by invite only. Every participating filmmaker receives five invites that can be sent to other filmmakers or artists who, in turn, have the opportunity to invite five more new people.
Instant Cinema is an initiative by filmmaker Rene Daalder and EYE Film Institute Netherlands in association with designer Folkert Gorter. Instant Cinema is made possible in part due to the financial support of the Mondriaan Foundation.
Currently, Instant Cinema is in beta. A great deal of material is already available, however, including for example Bas Jan Ader’s Fall and Fall 2 (1970). All work posted on the site requires the permission of its makers and/or copyright owners. View the site at http://preview.instantcinema.org/.
• BBC Northern Ireland Archive Footage Now Online
The BBC has launched "Chronicle,” a project which will see BBC Northern Ireland’s television archives made available online, in partnership with JISC and the British Universities Film and Video Council (BUFVC).
"Chronicle” will digitize part of the BBC’s vast archive footage, stored since the 1920s, for use in Northern Irish and UK further and higher education. Authorized users will have access to the footage which covers landmark moments in Northern Ireland’s history, including the appointment of BBC Northern Ireland’s first television news reporter in 1955, The Troubles, and the launch of digital technology.
The move to digitize the archive footage comes after calls for the preservation of footage between 1963 and 1981 which is at risk of deteriorating. Footage filmed after 1981 was recorded on Beta or Digibeta tape, which is a longer lasting medium than 16mm.
Martin Doherty, Department of Social and Historical Studies, University of Westminster, which is reviewing the academic value of the project, says, "The value of the BBC Northern Ireland News footage cannot be overstated. Access to this corpus of materials means that at the same time as fostering understanding and appreciation of ‘The Troubles’ within education, the academy is also given the opportunity to build on this through new avenues of research using innovative techniques.”
Caroline Thomson, Chief Operating Officer, BBC says, "The BBC is committed to making the best possible use of its enormous archive, and this project is an important step forward in finding ways to use archive material to serve both the academic community and the BBC's broader public purposes.”
"Chronicle” is located at: http://chronicle.bufvc.ac.uk/.
• New Online Collection and Book Features Rare Garden Lantern Slide Images
The Library of Congress has released online the digital images of a rare collection of more than 1,000 hand-colored, glass-plate lantern slides of American gardens taken a century ago by one of the first professional female photographers to achieve international prominence, Frances Benjamin Johnston.
A selection of 250 color images can be seen in a new book by house and garden historian Sam Watters titled Gardens for a Beautiful America, 1895-1935: Photographs by Frances Benjamin Johnston.The Library is unveiling the online images as a complement to the book, which was published this month by Acanthus Press in association with the Library.
The entire collection, 1,130 digital images, can be found in the Library’s Prints and Photographs Online Catalog (PPOC) at www.loc.gov/pictures/collection/fbj/. This online collection expands the book significantly by providing hundreds of additional images that reveal more fully such beautiful and vanished places as the color-themed gardens of the artists Albert and Adele Herter in East Hampton, N.Y. The collection also includes urban sites in New York City and estates from Pasadena, Calif., to Brookline, Mass. The Library has also uploaded the images to Flickr.
These remarkable color slides have not been seen since Johnston last projected them during lectures in the 1910s to 1930s to rally Americans to grow gardens on tenement lots, in row-house yards and in parks, which had deteriorated from industrial pollution and neglect during the Gilded Age.
The Library of Congress is the repository of Johnston’s personal papers and approximately 20,000 photographs. But the absence of garden names, locations and dates had kept the 1,130 lantern slides from general public access, until Watters took the challenge to catalog the garden collection. After five years of research in libraries and archives, he has transformed vague earlier library notations, such as "California garden,” into detailed data that enhances the cultural, historical and preservation contributions of the images. To cite just one example, an unlabeled slide was recognized as a prize winner in a 1922 design contest and is now identified as "The Janitor’s Garden, 137 E. 30th St., New York City.”
Johnston has long been acknowledged as an important photographer for her many contributions to early photojournalism and documentation of historic architecture. But her front and center role in the Garden Beautiful movement as an advocate and artist working with garden clubs, horticultural societies and museums has been neglected, until now. Johnston advocated for gardening the nation back to "America the Beautiful,” one elm, one rose and one fountain and shady terrace at a time.
The collaboration among Watters, Acanthus Press, and the Library of Congress has resulted in a fully accessible public archive of garden photographs with rich descriptions. The inspiring images can spark new ideas for backyard gardeners and outdoor living designers alike, while the thorough research notes in the book bring new sources to light for both landscape and photography historians as well as students of material culture and the environment.
Watters writes and lectures on American houses and gardens. Educated at Yale University, the University of Marseilles and the Royal Botanical Garden at Kew, Watters is the author of books and numerous articles on subjects ranging from gardens of the White House to cactus theft in the Mohave Desert.
Gardens for a Beautiful America, a 400-page hardcover book presents 250 garden photographs in large full-color illustrations. The book includes informative essays that describe the importance of Johnston’s work with gardens and explain the techniques she used to compose lantern slides that resemble delicate miniature paintings. The book is available for $79 in bookstores nationwide and in the Library of Congress Shop in Washington, D.C., or shop online at www.loc.gov/shop/index.php?action=cCatalog.showItem&cid=1&scid=78&iid=4523.
The Prints and Photographs Division is responsible for acquiring, preserving, securing, processing and serving the Library's unique and vast collection of visual materials, which includes more than 15 million photographs, historical prints, posters, cartoons, fine-art prints, and architectural and engineering designs.
Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution. The Library seeks to advance the knowledge and creativity of the American people through its collections, programs, and services. Many of the Library’s rich resources can be accessed through its website at www.loc.gov.
Sample Photographs of Johnston Lantern Slides:
- West Potomac Park, Washington, D.C. Irises along the embankment, April 1921.
- Casa de Mariposa, Walter Franklin Cobb House, Montecito, Calif. Garden gate, Spring 1917.
- Janitor apartment, 137 E. 30th St., New York. Stairwell garden, ca. 1922.
- Mount Vernon, George Washington House, Mount Vernon, Va. Privy in Vegetable Garden, 1894.
- Pavillon Colombe, Edith Wharton House, Saint Brice-sous-Fôret, France. 1925
• Database of Historical Film Colors Now Online
The Timeline of Historical Film Colors, at www.zauberklang.ch/colorsys.php, consists of approximately 240 entries, illustrated with approximately 400 images from archives and private collections. The database was compiled by Barbara Flueckiger, professor of film studies at the University of Zurich, and is based on her research at Harvard University in the framework of her project Film History Re-mastered. The database is a work in progress, and will eventually be developed into a collaborative platform, which will allow researchers to collaborate on a global scale.
• Grateful Dead Archive Now Online
The University of California Santa Cruz has gone live with its online Grateful Dead archive, which officially opened on June 29, 2012. The Grateful Dead Archive Online (GDAO) is a socially constructed collection comprised of over 45,000 digitized items drawn from the UCSC Library’s extensive Grateful Dead Archive (GDA) and from digital content submitted by the community and global network of Grateful Dead fans. Digitized content – including concert hotline recordings, decorated fan envelopes, fanzines, photographs, posters, radio interviews, tickets, T-shirts, and videos – can be found on the site, as well as web resources such as David Dodd’s "The Annotated Grateful Dead Lyrics” website and the fan recordings of concerts archived by the Internet Archive. These materials reflect the range of materials collected, managed, preserved and made available by the University Library’s Special Collections and Archives department to support teaching, learning and research. With the GDAO website, UCSC has a unique opportunity to engage a devoted community and provide this network of fans with social media tools to tag, comment, upload and share their digital files, memories, and knowledge and contribute to the construction of this educational resource.
The Grateful Dead Archive represents one of the most significant popular culture collections of the 20th Century and documents the band’s activity and influence in contemporary music from 1965 to 1995. The collection contains works by some of the most famous rock photographers and artists of the era including Herb Greene, Stanley Mouse, Wes Wilson and Susana Millman. Finding aids, guides and policies assisting with in-person research use of the GDA and related collections including business correspondence, show files and oral histories in their entirety can be found on the Special Collections Grateful Dead Gateway Page. Information about changing exhibits in the Dead Central gallery space at the UCSC Library is also available on the Gateway Page. See www.gdao.org.
• John Peel Record Archive Now Emerging Online
The contents of one of the most important and eclectic modern music collections in the world, John Peel’s personal record collection, is starting to be made public for the first time through an online archive. John Peel’s family, The John Peel Centre for the Creative Arts, Eye Film and TV, and website company Klik, are working together to create an online archive of John Peel’s record collection, including John’s hand-typed note cards, information about the front and back of each record sleeve, whether or not John rated the album, and other content. In addition to the details of Peel’s records, the virtual museum will also include videos, and incorporate Peel’s own home movies. Producers discovered 30 hours of footage at his home in Suffolk, with everything from clips of bands to footage from Liverpool’s Anfield stadium. (Note: copyright prevents the site from streaming audio files.) John Peel’s personal record collection consists of over 26,000 LPs, 40,000 singles and many thousands of CDs. Peel’s virtual museum is part of the Space, a digital arts service funded by the British Arts Council and the BBC. See http://thespace.org/items/s000004u.
• The Demise of 35mm Projection
2012 is the year that a majority of movie theaters worldwide will convert from 35mm to digital projection. By the end of 2012, according to IHS Screen Digest Cinema Intelligence Service, the majority of theaters will be showing movies digitally. By 2013, film will slip to niche status, shown in only a third of theaters. By 2015, 35mm will be projected in only 17 percent of global cinemas. This technological shift is being pushed by film studios, who want to save money on distribution on the front end, even though the cost of 35mm film preservation is much cheaper than the cost of digital archival preservation on the back end, due to the constant need for data migration to new formats. This change, which obviously has major implications for exhibition, access, and preservation, has been marked by a number of stories in the popular press, as well as a groundswell of debate among archivists, scholars, filmmakers, and cinephiles. There are even a couple of new documentaries on the subject, including Side by Side (Chris Kenneally, 2012), produced and narrated by Keanu Reeves. Some coverage of the demise of 35mm projection can be found in the following articles and blog posts representing several different points of view; of course, much more can be found online with just a little searching: www.laweekly.com/2012-04-12/film-tv/35-mm-film-digital-Hollywood/;www.guardian.co.uk/film/2011/nov/29/life-after-35mm-digital-film;http://blogs.smithsonianmag.com/movies/2012/05/film-vs-digital-archivists-speak-out/.
• Entertainment Industry’s Digital Storage Needs to Increase Dramatically
The entertainment industry’s digital storage needs are expected to be 5.6 times higher by 2017, according to a new report. The eighth annual report from Coughlin Associates on digital storage in media and entertainment included results from a 2012 survey of mostly SMPTE members on their digital storage needs. The film and television industry is facing a growing storage challenge as the industry converts to digital, affecting content capture, post-production, content distribution and content archiving.
The report also predicted a four-fold increase in storage capacity shipped per year (from 22,425 petabytes to 87,152 petabytes) out to 2017 while total media and entertainment storage revenue will grow more than 1.4 times (from $5.6 billion to $7.8 billion) over the same period.
The most widespread form of storage across all sectors in 2012 was digital tape (43 per cent), followed by hard disk drives (41 per cent), optical discs (16 per cent) and flash (0.2 per cent). By 2017, tape will be reduced to 38 per cent while optical discs will fall to about 3 per cent. Hard disk drives will rise to 59 per cent and flash memory will have increased to 0.3 per cent. Silver halide film as a content distribution media will vanish before the end of the decade. The report also found that digital conversion and preservation required the greatest storage capacity in 2012, followed by content distribution and post-production. For the full report, see www.tomcoughlin.com/techpapers.htm.
• The Regulatory Hazards of Digital Preservation
Picture yourself as a historian in 2035, trying to make sense of the 2012 American election campaign. Many of the websites and blogs now abuzz with news and comment will have long since perished. Data stored electronically decays. Many floppy disks from the early digital age are already unreadable. If you are lucky, copies of campaign material, and of e-mails and other materials (including declassified official documents) will be available in public libraries.
But will you be able to read them? Already, NASA has lost data from some of its earliest missions to the moon because the machines used to read the tapes were scrapped and cannot be rebuilt. A wise librarian will wish to keep in working order a few antique computers that can read such ancient technologies as CDs and USB thumb-drives. But even that may not be enough. Computer files are not worth anything without software to open them.
Read more at: www.economist.com/node/21553445
"Archival News” reports recent news highlights from the media archive community for the Cinema Journal readership. Some information in this column comes courtesy of the Association of Moving Image Archivists (AMIA) listserv, along with institutional newsletters, websites and press releases. This column is updated quarterly. Readers seeking more frequent news updates are encouraged to visit the AMIA news blog at www.AMIANewsbriefs.com. Contributions to this column are welcomed. Information should be sent to Jennifer Peterson, Assistant Professor, Film Studies Program, 316 UCB, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO, 80309-0316; phone 303-735-2694; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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