Eyebeam Resurfaces: The Future of the Digital Archive
Among celebrated galleries and cultural centers devastated by Hurricane Sandy, Eyebeam Art + Technology Center nearly lost the entirety of its digital archive in a record flood that swept through Chelsea.From January 812, the organization opens its doors for an examination of a recovery effort led by professional conservators and volunteers from the New York City community. With a lineup of lectures, a documentary film screening, and an exhibition of works salvaged from the collection, the event will offer the public a unique insight into the challenges of digital preservation while articulating the significance of Eyebeam's archive representing 15 years of media art history.
Drawing from a pool of more than 1,500 restored DVDs, VHS cassettes, Mini DVs, and digital storage media, curators Lindsay Howard and Jonathan Minard have selected the most unexpected, exciting, and rare material to feature in a multi-channel installation.These recovered works will offer a glimpse into Eyebeam's archives, a collection that will soon be digitized and made freely accessible to the public.
On Thursday, January 10 from 7:00pm9:00pm, Eyebeam will host a fundraiser event for its archival digitization effort, set to start early 2013. Experts from organizations including AV Preserve, MoMA, and Anthology Film Archive will speak on a range of topics related to digital preservation, as well as the influence of Eyebeam within the field of contemporary art. The fundraiser will also feature an exclusive preview of Jonathan Minard's Archive, a documentary film that examines humanity's dependence on digital memory. Tickets to the evening event are available for $25 on Brown Paper Tickets or may be purchased at the door. All proceeds go toward the recovery efforts.
Sign-up opportunities for workshops designed to help artists and organizations better protect work will be available throughout the course of the exhibition. The workshops will discuss issues such as the fragility of the digital medium, as well as transferring and converting digital works on a regular basis.
About Eyebeam Art & Technology Center
Founded in 1997, Eyebeam is a non-profit center dedicated to exposing diverse audiences to paradigm shifting work, demonstrating the robust potential of technology within a large spectrum of creative genres. Through 15 years of creative misuse of technology, Eyebeam has provoked experimentation and breakthroughs at the intersection of art and technology.
Between 33.5 feet of water from Hurricane Sandy's storm surge inundated Eyebeam's lower-level facilities, destroying the organization's equipment, gallery spaces, and celebrated 15 year digital archive, resulting in over $150,000 in losses.
Eyebeam Art + Technology Center (View)
540 West 21st Street between 10th & 11th Avenues
New York, NY 10011