Imagining the Collector’s Archive: Archinodes

Co-authoring a piece with fellow nodes, Paul Juricic and Jeff Traynor for a special issue of Convergence Journal. See for more details, and check out our work in progress documentation.


Our contribution is to imagine the collector’s archive as shaped by the theories and technologies that inform the trajectory of the archive, from the traditional to the speculative. Based on current web standards, ownership and access policies and laws, an assessment of the devices at our disposal to record and engage with digital assets, an eye on the networks and data streams that enable sharing and discussion, an ongoing commitment to deciphering theories of production rooted in media and communication studies, and a deep engagement with critical archival theory, we allow ourselves to speculate, draft and present the culmination of these ideas through a project interface we call Archinodes; an archive of nodes.

Archinodes is an archiving system, but it’s not just for traditional archivists; it’s for everyday collectors. It gives individuals who care about the things they collect the ability to manage and build their personal archive using a beautiful, intuitive, and playful interface. Several digital archiving systems are used by museums, libraries, and universities to preserve and index digital materials. In prioritizing archival standards and metadata schemas over a compelling user experience, they are often inaccessible to everyday collectors and fail to encourage engagement with one’s archive.

CFP: Convergence Journal: Digital Archives & Open Archival Practices

Convergence: Special themed issue

Vol 21, no 1 (February 2015)

Digital Archives & Open Archival Practices

Guest Editors: Sarah Atkinson and Sarah Whatle

This special issue aims to bring together researchers, artists, professionals and practitioners from the field of digital archives and the archiving of practice with an emphasis upon Art, Design, Media, Film and Performing arts disciplines. It specifically aims to explore the affordances of digital technologies upon archival practices.

Within digital archival practices, there is a notable shift from the closed to the open and from the traditional single-user archive model to emerging multi-user, collaborative forms of archival practices and scholarship. The digital preservation and presentation of archival materials dramatically impacts upon the nature and notion of access. The types of discoveries, insights and findings that can be made through online digital interfaces can be radically altered.

The call for papers will invite contributions that focus on the widest range of digital archives (film, dance, sound, oral history etc), that consider national and international collections, which might focus on archival strategies, policy, copyright and education, and which consider technological aspects of digital archiving including the semantic web, analytics, meta-data, tagging and time-based meta-data.

The editors are particularly interested in encouraging submissions from a range of contexts, originating from academic research, policy making and from the archival professions. Contributions will be welcomed, but are not limited to, articles and pieces that address the following questions:

· How are digital archives changing our experience of the ‘live’?

· To what extent do digital archives ask us to re-evaluate the value of archival collections; how are digital archives altering our perception of the ‘archive’?

· What are the critical discourses and practices that help us make sense of the role and impact of digital archives in contemporary society?

· How do digital archival practices shift our view of the ‘archive’ and the ‘archivist’?

· How do digital archives participate in artistic practice?

· To what extent does the representation of art and artists in digital archives shift, diminish or support artists’ practice?

· What role does design play in the creation, curation and visualization of artistic practice in digital archives?

· To what extent do digital archives prompt us to reconsider the value, place and purpose of the archive in contemporary society?

· What role does the user have in constructing the archive?

· How do born and re-born digital archives contribute to the discourse of ephemerality and permanence in contemporary arts practice?

· What is the future of digital archives in contemporary arts practice?

· What are the nature and functions of the digital archive in education, research and scholarship?

· How can digital archives contribute to the notion of a digital public space?

· How can the consideration of digital archives and open archival practices most usefully contribute to the Open Source, Open Educational Resources (OER) and Open Educational Practices (OEP) movements?