In 2015 I did some group research into artists’ responses to archives and historical resources. The project was led by educator Debi Banerjee and Glasgow School or Art’s Archives & Collections archivist Susannah Waters.
Questions for archives and historical resourses
As a group we visited archives and research centres in Glasgow. These included the Glasgow Museums Resources Centre and National Library of Scotland’s Moving Image Archive.
I took part in group discussion during these visits. Furthermore, talks and presentations took place around the research table at Glasgow School or Art’s Archives & Collections. Some of the questions and topics include:
The building of personal archives. Practices of collecting, from physical collections to online or digital archives. How an archivist chooses to archive something, or how it is appraised. And, how we fetishize the contents of archives and historical resources.
Enter dust free tomb
To bring together my research I presented a three-part performance called Enter dust free tomb. It took place at Glasgow School or Art’s Archives & Collections on 9 December 2015.
Enter dust free tomb focussed on the threshold that objects step through in order to become archival. The first element looked at the obsolescence of Sony MiniDiscs. I wanted to explore how these semi-digital devices are fetishistic when it comes to collections.
For the second part of the performance I presented a jumper to the group. I read a text written from the perspective of the jumper. My intention was to explore how objects in a personal archive can have a voice of their own. A voice to question their viability in the appraisal process.
For the final part of the performance I used a photographic slide projector with wired remote. I also wanted to look familial memory as an archive. My grandfather introduced photographic slides film to me. I went through slides that showed both his past-life observations, and those of my own too.