Call for papers: “Collections and Collectors,” Artifact & Apparatus: Journal of Media Archaeology, Extended deadline: [15/11/2022]Marilena Pateraki
Call for papers: “Collections and Collectors”
Extended deadline: November 15, 2022
Over the past two decades, several institutions have emerged that collect, preserve, and make available for study obsolete media-technological artifacts and apparatuses: the Media Archaeological Fundus at Humboldt University, the online Museum of Obsolete Media, and the Media Archaeology Lab at CU Boulder are only a few of the most prominent examples. While much attention has been paid to media archaeology as artistic and scholarly practices, little attention has been paid to the archivists, collectors, and institutions that preserve and make available these objects for interrogation, ensuring that not only the media content itself—the images, sounds, and texts—are migrated to newer formats and preserved, but also that the technical devices and processes that made their creation possible are safeguarded and stored for posterity.
For our second issue, “Collections and Collectors,” we invite contributors to help remedy this oversight by re-inscribing the role of the media-archaeological collection and collector in the creation of knowledge about the history of media arts and communications. Why do some people feel compelled to save and collect outdated technologies, and what motivates them to do this kind of work? How do these collections actually work and function, from acquisition, processing, and description to the creation of scholarship? What kind of backgrounds and specializations do people who devote their lives to collecting and caring for obsolete media relics have? What unique challenges do these media objects pose to conservators in terms of maintenance, repair, and storage, and what can we actually learn from the objects themselves?