Conversation with Claire Kennedy: Librarians in the Art StudioPosted: May 18, 2015 Filed under: Advice, Alternative Careers, Archives, Interviews Comments Off on Conversation with Claire Kennedy: Librarians in the Art Studio
Following her thought-provoking talk at ARLIS, “Artist in the Library: A Case Study”, in which she touched on the underexplored applications of LIS training in a studio environment, we wanted to follow up with Claire Kennedy, formerly the Librarian and Archivist for John Baldessari, to discuss further.
First, can you briefly discuss your current position and some of your main day-to-day responsibilities and priorities?
Actually my current position is Gallery Archivist at L.A. Louver Gallery in Venice, California. I was just hired, as of a month ago. Before this recent change, I worked for the artist John Baldessari as his full-time Librarian and Archivist.
What is your educational background?
I have a degree in Anthropology and an MLIS degree, both from UCLA. In between my two degrees I spent about six years working and taking a few classes here and there. I would recommend to anyone interested in diversifying their training to look into taking a class in something like project management.
Did you “hack” your library degree in order to prepare you for working directly with artists?
No, I didn’t. My background is in rare books and manuscripts. I worked in Special Collections libraries at UCLA, the Huntington and with private book dealers and collectors before working for John. I think the best thing you can do while in an MLIS program is to take all the technology classes you can. Take UX design, or web development if you can. Take archiving classes if you want to be a librarian and take cataloging if you are training to be an archivist.
Can you talk a little bit about ways that you draw on the more conventional aspects of your LIS education? And what are some things you’ve had to learn on your own?
I think the most conventional skills I have used working for John were cataloging books, applying preservation knowledge to re-housing paper-based and photographic archival materials, record retention scheduling and the research skills I picked up in my degree program and working in libraries. As far as the skills I had to learn on my own, I had to learn about how to track auctions, gather provenance information, become familiar with the production and exhibition schedules of an art studio and the needs of John’s production staff. In the private world, you learn how to assess and serve the needs and priorities of your employer. In the MLIS program, it is sometimes taken for granted that everyone will eventually be working in a Public or University library setting. Its too bad that the private working world isn’t discussed more.
What would you consider the most rewarding parts of your job, and what are your biggest challenges as an information professional in a nontraditional environment?
I think the biggest challenge was learning how to communicate the needs of the archive and library to people who aren’t also librarians. I had spent most of my career around like-minded library staff who understood perfectly where I was coming from when I spoke about bone-folders and bindings. When I was the only MLIS working amongst artists, I discovered that I had to learn how to communicate more clearly about the needs of the minutiae of the library and archive. Initially I was out of my comfort zone.
What is a typical day like for you?
Working for John, I purchased and cataloged books, documented artwork in the database, created condition reports for artwork coming in and going out of the studio, performed research for outside reference inquiries, I tracked auctions and processed reproduction requests. There were always new tasks and projects popping up every day. Sometimes I wore multiple hats, where I was helping the production manager move large artwork around the studio, or running errands to lend a hand. We all worked together in the studio to get the job done.
During your talk in Fort Worth, you alluded to the fact that artists often have a need for people with LIS training, but they’re either not aware of the field or not able to articulate their needs using LIS language, so the two communities aren’t connected.
In your opinion, what is the impact of those jobs being filled by people who lack LIS training?
I think that LIS training is essential to perform the meticulous, detail oriented work that we are asked to do. Database management, creating and tracking inventories, cataloging books and other objects, performing research, maintaining any type of project schedule, etc. I believe there are “archivists” and “librarians” out there hired to do this kind of work who don’t have the training, skills and experience we do. As a result, I suspect there are some messes being made. Ultimately we are experts at preserving things and making them retrievable. In a world where there is so much being produced, digitally and physically, our skillset is an incredible asset. All we need to do is promote ourselves! How can we do this? Let’s work together to make ourselves invaluable!
Is there a community of information professionals who work with practicing artists? And how can interested ArLiSNAPers (and others) get involved?
That’s a great question! I don’t think so. I could be wrong, but I am not familiar with any group in Los Angeles. As the Southern California Chapter Chair, along with the chapter’s Vice-Chair Ben Lee Ritchie Handler, I want to reach out to all the archivists and librarians (professional or not) to form a network. We can all help each other, put together show-and-tells as well as workshops.
Do you have any advice for bridging the awareness gap between the two communities?
To be honest, I recommend joining your local ARLIS chapter and being very proactive! Cold email anyone who is working in creative spaces in your area and set up a visit for your chapter. Ask to interview local artists for your local chapter’s blog or website. Start communicating with a local gallery and offer your contact information in case any of the artists they represent need any assistance with their archive or documenting their work. Go to art gallery openings and start meeting people. Build your own resources.
Do you have any tips for job-seekers on how to approach artists about their information and content management needs?
I guess I answered this question above. But my biggest piece of advice is to put yourself out there. Email artists and tell them what you can do for them.
Curator Special Collections/Assistant Librarian — Miami UniversityPosted: December 11, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Opportunities: Job Postings Comments Off on Curator Special Collections/Assistant Librarian — Miami University
The Miami University Libraries seeks an enthusiastic, knowledgeable, proactive and service-oriented librarian for the Walter Havighurst Special Collections. Reporting to the Head of Special Collections and Archives, the Curator of Special Collections/Assistant Librarian will foster engagement with the collections, develop relationships with researchers, promote the collections among academic faculty, coordinate instruction in the use of departmental primary resources and participate broadly in departmental services and outreach.
A graduate degree in library or information science from an ALA-accredited institution; formal coursework or training in rare books, special collections librarianship, and/or history of the book; ability to meet the Miami University criteria for advancement and promotion of librarians as outlined in the Libraries Appointment, Rank and Promotion System (LARPS); training and/or experience providing reference or research assistance in an academic library; training and/or experience providing instruction in primary resources, special collections and/or archives; ability to work effectively in a customer service oriented environment; ability to work effectively as a team member to produce targeted outcomes; ability to work independently and prioritize work to ensure that goals are realized; demonstrated strength in written and verbal communication in English.
For more information or to apply for the position, please see www.miamiujobs.com/applicants/Central?quickFind=54077
Paid digital archive internPosted: November 15, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Digital Libraries, Opportunities: Job Postings Comments Off on Paid digital archive intern
Artist seeks paid digital archive Intern, deadline Nov 30
Seeking PAID DIGITAL ARCHIVE INTERN to Begin January 2015
Whitney Biennial artist seeks paid digital archive Intern to assist with reorganizing and managing five (5) 2 TB external drives containing video, audio, image and text files. The reorganization of 20 years of digital data is intended for two different purposes: (1) as “active storage” in the artist’s studio, and (2) as the digital addition to her non-digital “Collected Papers” already archived at a major academic institution.
The successful candidate will have:
-knowledge of Information and Library Science management systems
-coursework in the management of born-digital records preferred
-high comfort level in learning new technologies
-discretion when dealing with confidential or sensitive information
-accuracy and attention to detail
Our studio is located in Lower Manhattan. We anticipate the paid intern chosen will work a total of 12-16 hours per week, with flexible afternoon and early evening hours to be arranged. The post will begin in January 2015.
Please email resume and cover letter highlighting any relevant work experience and coursework to: firstname.lastname@example.org attn: Sur, Studio Manager.
We will accept applications until midnight, November 30. On December 9 will begin contacting suitable candidates to arrange in-person interviews.
Our goal is to reach a final decision no later than December 21.
Project Archivist — Library, Baltimore Museum of ArtPosted: September 16, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Opportunities: Job Postings Comments Off on Project Archivist — Library, Baltimore Museum of Art
The Baltimore Museum of Art is seeking an experienced Project Archivist for the successful execution of an archives processing and digital preservation policy project. This is a grant-funded, 12-month, full-time, temporary position in the Library and Archives Department of The Baltimore Museum of Art.
Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
- Following national standards and best practices for archival description, process and arrange institutional records, recommend and implement appropriate preservation procedures, work with Archivists’ Toolkit, and prepare MARC records.
- Train and supervise volunteers and interns.
- Working with staff throughout the Museum, develop an institution-wide digital preservation policy. Create procedures specifically for the preservation of born-digital and digitized archival records.
- Promote the progress and results of the project via social media, professional conference presentations, and/or articles in professional journals or newsletters.
- Remain competent and current through self-directed professional reading, developing professional contacts with colleagues, and attending professional development courses and training.
This full-time, temporary, exempt position reports to the Head Librarian & Archivist in the Education Division.
Full post here.
SAA Annual Meeting RecapPosted: September 3, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Cataloging | Tags: archives, Cataloging, conference, conferences 1 Comment
This year I made my first trip to the Society of American Archivists annual meeting, which was held in Washington DC. It was my first time attending a large conference, so it was a lot to take in, but I think I made the most of my time there without getting too overwhelmed! It was a quick trip, I only was there for one-and-a-half days, so unfortunately I don’t have a comprehensive report to give, but below are some of my impressions and opinions on the happenings at the conference and my experience as a first-timer.
My main reason for attending the conference was to network and augment my job search. I met with someone to look over my resume and discuss strategies for applying, and she was very helpful in giving me suggestions of places to apply to and offering to pass my resume along to colleagues. Other offerings for attendees in the midst of applying to jobs were not as helpful, however. There was a job board with postings, most of which were already on SAA’s website, and a place to post your resume, but I didn’t get the sense that either area was attracting that much attention or that career and job search services were a strong point of the conference as a whole.
As for professional development, the session I found most interesting, beneficial and probably the most useful to ArLiSNAP members, was a roundtable on visual materials cataloguing and access. In it, a panel discussed the new Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Graphics) guidelines, how they differ from and and relate to existing guidelines and how they can be implemented using MARC (DCRM(G) can also be used in EAD as well). First a “live cataloguing demo” was presented and then we split up into smaller groups to try our hand at using the guidelines to catalogue a photo album. When we reconvened as a larger group, each one had thought of different ways of titling and describing the materials (and some heated arguments ensued). It was a good reminder that there can be multiple “right” ways to catalogue, and that cataloguing is an art with guidelines to follow, but no real hard fast rules. In a room full of seasoned cataloguers all using the same set of guidelines to describe the same materials, differences abounded. Knowing that veteran cataloguers faced some of the same cataloguing quandaries I have as a new professional was reassuring, if not a bit unbalancing as well. I also attended sessions on preventative conservation, deaccessioning and teaching with primary resources. If anyone is particularly interested in preventative conservation, I have a handout from the session listing some great resources for disaster planning and risk management which I would be happy to share.
I also attended the Museum Archives Section meeting. Primarily this was a business meeting for officers, but it was interesting to see which museums were represented and what issues were discussed. Funding and administrative support seemed to be the main hot-button issues, which is not surprising coming from the non-profit sector. For those of us working in museums and other non-profit arts institutions, funding issues and defending the importance of library and archives’ place in the arts are probably things we will all have to deal with at some point in our careers.
I went solo, which might seem scary to some, but between my jam-packed schedule and the general bustle of the conference it didn’t leave much time to be intimidated. Plus, it being a fairly small professional circle, it wasn’t hard to spot former classmates and colleagues. So, even though I went alone, for much of the time I was with people I knew or networking and making new acquaintances. The biggest hindrance to attending was the cost. Being a recent graduate, I got student pricing which helped out immensely, but still there was the cost of the plane ticket, hotel room, food and transportation. I would highly recommend that any current students thinking of attending next year try to involve themselves in some way, whether it be submitting a poster or serving as a member of their SAA student chapter, to get some financial help from their program to attend.
Overall, I felt it was a great experience. There was a lot to offer for those interested in art and visual materials, and good representation from museums and other arts and cultural institutions. My goal was to network and I definitely made some great, and I hope lasting, connections. Besides trying to get help with funding, my biggest piece of advice would be to go in with a specific goal. Having networking and job hunting in my mind helped to keep me focused and not feel like I had to do everything.
Did anyone else go this year? What did you think? If anyone has specific questions about the conference itself, the sessions I attended or attending in general, feel free to email me!
Job postingsPosted: August 31, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Images: Photographs, Libraries: Museum Libraries, Libraries: Public Art Libraries, Opportunities: Job Postings, Photography, Records Management Comments Off on Job postings
Assistant Archivist– Corning Museum of Glass
P/T Records Manager/Archivist– Segerstrom Archive
Collections Photographer (Library Technical Assistant IV)– NYPL
Volunteer (?) Opportunity: American Theatre Archive Project, New York City (also across America and Canada)Posted: August 19, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Art History, Opportunities: Professional Development, Opportunities: Volunteer | Tags: art, Canada, dance, new york city, volunteer Comments Off on Volunteer (?) Opportunity: American Theatre Archive Project, New York City (also across America and Canada)
The following was sent out on the SLA Arts / Design / etc listserv re: the NYC team, but I had never heard of the American Theatre Archive Project before. If you visit their website you can see all their initiatives in various cities, and probably join in, if you’re so inclined.
American Theatre Archive Project (ATAP) NYC Team Wants You!
Want to be part of a troupe of New York City archivists and librarians with a passion for theatre?
Do you have a knowledge of basic archival principles, the ability to survey collections, some familiarity with theater terminology; are you able to attend at least half of our monthly meetings the first Monday of each month at the New Amsterdam Theatre? Then ATAP is an organization where your talents will truly make a difference.
Founded in 2009, the American Theatre Archive Project supports theatre makers in archiving records of their work for the benefit of artists, scholars, patrons, and the public.
An initiative of the American Society for Theatre Research (ASTR), ATAP is a nationwide network of archivists, dramaturgs and scholars dedicated to preserving the legacy of the American theatre.
Thanks to a generous grant from the Lucille Lortel Foundation, ATAP teams (usually an archivist and documentarian) have completed surveys and developed plans for the archives of Roundabout Theatre, Atlantic Theater Company, Cherry Lane Theater, and New York Theatre Workshop (with more to come).
- To preserve records of current theatrical process and product for future generations.
- To employ theatre legacy to develop theatres’ fiscal health and support new work.
- To promote a better understanding of theatre as a vital element of cultural history.
- To encourage scholarly research in contemporary American theatre.
- To increase funding for establishing and maintaining theatre archives.
- To support collaborations among theatre archivists, practitioners, and scholars.
ATAP holds training sessions and has developed a manual and brochure for theater companies.
To learn more and see our manual and brochure, please visit our website:
Please join us for the love of theater!
Next Meeting: Monday, Sept. 8th at 6:30 New Amsterdam Theatre Lobby
to Set Goals and Plans for the Coming Year
Call for Papers: Archivaria’s 40th Anniversary issue (Association of Canadian Archivists)Posted: August 19, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Opportunities: Calls for Papers | Tags: ACA, archives, association of canadian archivists, Canada, publishing, scholarship Comments Off on Call for Papers: Archivaria’s 40th Anniversary issue (Association of Canadian Archivists)
Call for Papers for a 40th Anniversary Issue of Archivaria (Fall 2015)
Archivaria Anniversary Issue: To Understand Ourselves
In 1953, the Archives Section of the Canadian Historical Association was born. A decade later, Hugh Dempsey, the first editor of The Canadian Archivist, argued that “the Archives Section feels it would perform a useful service by publishing selected papers and bringing information on archival techniques, policies and practices to the attention of its members.” This “useful service” has been performed admirably ever since, by The Canadian Archivist from 1963 to 1974 and by Archivaria since 1975.
Also in 1975, the Commission on Canadian Studies published To Know Ourselves, an examination of the role and importance of Canadian studies to Canadian society and identity. As Chair Tom Symons wrote in his introduction to the Report, “the most valid and compelling argument for Canadian studies is the importance of self-knowledge, the need to know and to understand ourselves: who we are; where we are in time and space; where we have been; where we are going; what we possess; what our responsibilities are to ourselves and to others.”
In 2015, Archivaria will celebrate its 40th anniversary. In honour of this milestone event, the Archivaria Editorial Board will publish a special issue of Archivaria offering reflections on the state of archives, the archival profession, and the archival discipline in Canada. Building on the perspective of the Symons Report, this issue will look at the past, present, and future of archives in Canada, the place of archives in time and space, the responsibilities of archivists – to ourselves and to others – and the nature of the archivist in the 21st century.
We are seeking contributions from Canadian and international archivists and archival scholars as well as from allied professionals, users of archives, and others with a stake in the archival endeavour. We are soliciting contributions on such topics as:
· the perception of the role, scope, and nature of archives (including holdings, institutions, and archival practitioners) from within and outside the archival profession and discipline,
· the impact of societal and technological change on the nature of archives and role and duties of archivists,
· the history, development, and role of Archivaria and its contributions to archival thinking since its inception 40 years ago,
· the future role of archival networks, associations, and alliances in supporting the archival endeavour,
· the changing relationship between archives and different sectors of society, including perspectives from contributors such as historians, social scientists, statisticians, lawyers,
genealogists, etc., and
· speculations on the future of the profession and discipline.
Deadline for expressions of interest: Expression of interest consisting of an abstract of the proposed article (300-500 words) must be received by Archivaria Editorial Board representative Laura Millar (email@example.com<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>) by 14 November 2014.
Submission guidelines: Final submissions should follow the “Advice to Authors of Submissions to Archivaria” at http://archivists.ca/content/advice-authors-submissions-archivaria.
Deadline for complete manuscripts: Complete manuscripts are due 30 April 2015.
Please feel free to direct questions related to this special issue to the Editorial Board representative, Laura Millar, at email@example.com.
 T.H.B. Symons, To Know Ourselves: The Report of the Commission on Canadian Studies, Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, 1975, p. 12.
Call for Proposals: the Association of Canadian Archivists 2015 ConferencePosted: August 6, 2014 Filed under: Archival Management, Archives, Opportunities: Calls for Papers, Opportunities: Conferences | Tags: archiving, Canada Comments Off on Call for Proposals: the Association of Canadian Archivists 2015 Conference
The theme for the next ACA conference is “Perspectives on the Archival Horizon” — “We can change how we view the world, but we must start from where we now stand; and we must bear in mind our position will influence how others perceive us.”
I’d be more than happy to collaborate on a session or presentation for the ACA 2015 conference in Regina, you know, if anyone wants to talk about art archiving, outreach, funding models, copyright and users’ rights …..
The conference will be June 11-13, 2015, and the deadline for proposals is October 3rd. Links to submission forms can be found in the PDF, or on the website.
The call for student papers and posters will come out later this year!
Job Posting: Archivist, National Gallery of Art, WashingtonPosted: August 5, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Opportunities: Job Postings | Tags: archives, art, government, job postings Comments Off on Job Posting: Archivist, National Gallery of Art, Washington
This Archivist position is permanent / full-time, with a salary range of $75,621 to $98,305. It requires five years of progressively responsible experience, so it’s at the max experience of the ArLiSNAP mandate, but I would (personally) encourage art-oriented archivists to apply anyways. I’d apply myself if it weren’t so adamant about US citizens only ….
This is a permanent private funded position that does not incur federal status, but does affords the complete federal benefits package including the Federal Employees Retirement (FERS) program. Located in the Gallery Archives (GA)Division of The National Gallery of Art.
The purpose of this position is to perform professional archival duties in the Gallery Archives of the National Gallery of Art, especially in working with electronic records, digital information systems, and internet technologies and in describing and analyzing Gallery history and records in various media. The incumbent also is responsible for supporting the Gallery Archives program in preserving records in every physical form, and interpreting Gallery history and records through various communication channels, including internet. The incumbent participates in the full range of archival activities, including understanding and managing traditional architectural and institutional records as well as electronic record-keeping systems. The incumbent also is responsible for providing records guidance to Gallery offices; for appraising records; for identifying preserving and organizing complex bodies of historical records; and for advising the Chief Archivist concerning policies for archival management of digital images.
Implements policies for ingest, preservation and use of digital records and management of the Gallerys digital archival repository based on best archival practice and published standards.
Prepares complex descriptions of Gallery records and interprets institutional history for various audiences via electronic and traditional systems.
Oversees projects for records conservation and digitization.
Serves as liaison with records-creating offices and oversees all steps in transfer of records.
Appraises records for permanent evidential or informational values and manages acquisition activities.
Works with on-site researchers and coordinates responses to complex reference inquiries, including specialized inquiries relating to architectural records or Gallery history.
Writes articles, texts, captions and exhibition narratives based on archival records and history.
This requires at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-11 level in the Federal service or a Masters degree in archival science or with a major that includes at least 18 hours in archival science, history and /or political science or government. Specialized experience is experience working as an archivist in a cultural institution and working with institutional records.
In addition to a minimum of one years experience equivalent to the GS-11 level as required by the GS-12 qualification standards, candidates must have a minimum of five years of progressively responsible independent professional experience as an archivist in a cultural institution and working with institutional records.
Academy of Certified Archivists Archival Certification is preferred. Please provide information on the date and term of certification.
More details and the application form at the link above.
On Freelancing and Contracting: some conference cogitationsPosted: August 1, 2014 Filed under: Advice, Advice: Job Search, Alternative Careers, Archives, Discussion 5 Comments
I spent the end of June in beautiful, temperate, layers-friendly Victoria, BC, attending the Association of Canadian Archivists’ annual conference. It was amazing, scary, inspiring, and weirdly comfortable — no business cards were exchanged, but plenty of people wanted to gush about ideas.
I presented on the student panel between two very intelligent and articulate colleagues — my presentation was, let’s say, a bit more informal than theirs, but I think it went well. It was gratifying to hear some of my sentiments echoed in the closing plenary by Laura Millar. The main point I ended my student presentation on, which was picked up again by Millar, was the idea that the archiving profession needs to delve into freelancing models of employment.
This theme has been covered by the usual GLAM publishers (HLS on freelancing librarians; Hiring Librarians on contract work; INALJ on freelancing) — as has, of course, the dearth of cushy, steady, benefits-laden jobs you can hold for thirty years (or at least until all our icons and role models retire). I haven’t seen much discussion on how to freelance in art libraries or art archives, but I’d like to think there’s plenty of project work to be done in preserving and cataloguing artists’ files, implementing digital asset management, developing metadata schemes or collections mandates, digitization, publishing and reproductions management, exhibits and auctions, conservation for artists’ books….
#aca2014 Millar: We cannot wait for records creators, we have to go to them. We cannot do this on our own, we must enlist society to help us
— Sweeney139 (@Sweeney139) June 28, 2014
Millar: we need to engage actively and persistently with our communities if we are to survive #aca2014
— Hannah (@hannahwiseman) June 28, 2014
Millar: funding cuts is not our crisis. Our crisis is a chaotic digital world crashing into itself, destroying trust, authenticity. #aca2014
— ACA (@archivistsdotca) June 28, 2014
My presentation focused on diverse and underrepresented communities that have media-collecting and -preserving needs not being met by institutionalized archiving systems. I focused on virtual communities (because social-network websites are where the best media are being collected, obviously), which meant that everything archival got put into a very technological framework.
I tried not to scare anyone off with the fear of archiving in the digital age (“Imagine you work for a historical society that has collected materials from each and every single resident of the town,” I suggested, to get a scope of the problem/potential of virtual communities), but I’m afraid it’s a very real part of the future of the profession, especially as we start moving from digitization projects to interface design for presenting our materials.
Bringing information-professional skills and techniques to your average website-builder or community-organizer is likely a consultancy task: you start with assessment, then they find enough money for implementation, you make some recommendations for maintenance, and eventually every community or arts group has an archivist-on-call, or a librarian for a half-day a week.
That means we all juggle multiple clients and bounce from one deadline to the next. Many people do not find this a very rosy picture of the industry’s future. Then again, there are those of us that can’t imagine working the same full-time processing or reference job day in and day out.
There are definitely ways to do it right. I’ll be interviewing some freelancing and entrepreneur archivists and librarians in the near future, on this blog, so you can see for yourselves. There’s even an association for independent information professionals, and plenty of opportunities for mentorship, entrepreneurial bootcamps, start-up funding, and guides to the legal and financial steps to declaring yourself a businesswoman.
Ideally, I’d love to do private archiving with artists — which is never high-paying. It tends only to happen when the artist is anticipating an eventual donation of their records to an institution — there, the benefit of getting things organized beforehand is the tax credit offered upon appraisal (in Canada, anyways). While an artist or arts group may want to get the job done, the money, often, simply isn’t there.
[Ironically, I just found contract archiving work in the private sector, which is not exactly walking-the-walk, but maybe I’ll have time for some pro-bono projects with individuals and non-profits. Stay tuned!]
I’m interested to know everyone’s thoughts. There were lots of nodding heads when Millar said it, but I still felt a bit radical suggesting it myself (ah, what the confidence a thirty-year career could give!).
What do you think: are librarians and archivists destined for lots of part-time, contract-based, multi-tasking jobs, helping everyone manage unique information needs? Or will the majority of us find the full-time, paid-vacation unicorn we dream of? Is there a balance between the two?
More scarily: will freelancing mean we all have to learn how to administer databases and provide cut-rate graphic design services? Is there a way to freelance in GLAM-related work that isn’t technologically dependent?
Job Posting: Audio-Video Preservation Fellowship, San FranciscoPosted: July 25, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Images: Moving Images/Films, Instruction, Opportunities: Job Postings | Tags: audio video, fellowships, media, san francisco Comments Off on Job Posting: Audio-Video Preservation Fellowship, San Francisco
This is a one-year fellowship, 20-25 hours per week, paid but with no specific salary information.
The Bay Area Video Coalition (BAVC) is accepting applications for its Preservation Educational Resources Fellowship. The Fellow will work for a period of one year within the Preservation Department, assisting with the development of a suite of educational resources designed to assist individuals and organizations alike in taking initial steps to assess and establish a preservation plan for their audiovisual materials….
We wish to work with a library, archives, film production or history student/recent graduate who aspires to learn about preservation planning and archival audiovisual formats and who demonstrates the strong desire to help us advance the field of moving image preservation.
Duties will include:
Researching existing audiovisual preservation tools and educational resources
Assisting with the research and acquisition of various samples of audiovisual formats
Assisting with the identification and documentation of conditions that can impact the well-being of audiovisual materials (during both storage and also playback)
Participating in, and providing support for, the production of educational resources (including print materials, instructional videos, and web content).
Skills acquired will include:
Knowledge of audiovisual preservation best practices and familiarity with the field of media preservation. A thorough understanding of the preservation of audiovisual materials (including equipment, format identification, proper care and handling and cleaning techniques, and playback and storage best practices).
Video or audio production or post-production
Training in preservation or archives (particularly video or audio preservation), library education/ experience or current training in audiovisual archives or museum studies.
If interested, please send a resumé and cover letter to the BAVC Preservation Department at firstname.lastname@example.org
Bay Area Video Coalition
2727 Mariposa Street, 2nd Floor
San Francisco, CA 94110
Interview: Starting a Student ChapterPosted: July 23, 2014 Filed under: Advice, Archives, Images: Moving Images/Films, Interviews, Student Organizations | Tags: archives, Canada, education, preservation 1 Comment
We’ve talked before about the value of having professional-association student chapters on campus, whether it’s just general awareness of career options and extracurriculars or the impact on your resume of helping to manage and plan events, fundraisers, field trips, etc. There are no ARLIS/NA student chapters (yet), but that doesn’t mean you can’t start one! (I guess ArLiSNAP is sort of your virtual student chapter.)
During my MLIS these past two years, I watched some fellow McGill students start up a student chapter of the Association of Moving Image Archivists. As media preservation is a pretty important topic to arts-librarianship students, I thought I would ask a few questions about the process, the need, and the benefits of bringing special-interest representation to your school. Justin Mckinney kindly agreed to answer my questions about his work founding the chapter.
(Photos by Fiona Mak.)
ArLiSNAP: Let’s start with student chapters generally – were you members of other student chapters to start?
Justin Mckinney: During my first year of library school, I was a member of the Association of Canadian Archivists student chapter at McGill. I started out keen and not knowing what I was doing and imagining all the great things we would accomplish, but nothing really happened all year and I wasn’t exactly as active as I could have been.
ArLiSNAP: What’s the value of having local representation of professional associations?
JM: I think it has the potential to help raise awareness about the organization. Also, it can educate student members about issues in the field and maybe even lead to practical opportunities to do stuff. I think it probably varies from year to year and association to association, and is really dependent on the group of people involved at any given time.
ArLiSNAP: Why the Association of Moving Image Archivists specifically?
JM: I became really interested in film history and film preservation after my undergrad, which led me down the path to library school. I was already an AMIA member before starting library school, and my main interest in the archivy/LIS world was and is film preservation. After a sort of underwhelming experience of my first year at library school (which included a complete absence of film archiving content), I was determined to take more of an active role in my own learning. Fortunately, I had a couple of great friends in the program who had similar interests and were very supportive, and it snowballed from there.
ArLiSNAP: What was the process for starting a student chapter?
JM: I started emailing (and harassing) the fine people at AMIA about how to start a student chapter and they explained what was needed, which was mainly a constitution and that the executive members all be members of AMIA. They put me in touch with the folks at the NYU AMIA student chapter, and they were kind enough to send me their constitution, which I basically amended to change any mention of NYU to McGill — from there, we were off and running.
As for McGill, I just emailed people at the School of Information Studies (SIS) and let them know what I was doing and they got us a table at the student chapter fair at the start of the school year. Throughout the year they were generally helpful about any questions I had and they also helped us get connected with the Masters of Library and Information Science Student Association (MLISSA), and the Post-Graduate Student Society (PGSS), which both provide funding for SIS student groups.
In general, though, it was mostly a lot of me emailing and badgering people and then getting information as needed. It’s not really a clear process to setting up a chapter, and I think it would be beneficial if there were more guidance or upfront information given about the process of starting one.
In regards to gauging student interest, we really had no idea what would happen. To start it was just the executive (myself, Mark Haydn as vice-president, and Nicholas Avedisian-Cohen as secretary and treasurer). My main goal was to make the student chapter viable enough for someone to take over for a second year, once we all graduated. At the aforementioned student chapter fair, we were pleasantly surprised to get over 20 students to sign up for our email list, and we held our first meeting, which had over ten people, including first- and second-year students. This was a pleasant surprise and I think demonstrated that many people are interested in the field and also frustrated with the lack of film/media archiving content in library school.
The main paperwork was getting the constitution ratified. We also had to apply for funding for various events through PGSS and MLISSA. A lot it was just learning on the fly, as none of us had ever done anything like this before. So it involved a lot of asking questions of people at McGill and AMIA, and remaining persistent.
Probably the biggest challenge was forging a relationship with the Moving Image Research Laboratory (MIRL) at McGill, a research project which houses a wonderful cinema space and collection of 16mm films. Pretty much all of the Fall 2013 semester was spent sending emails, stalking professors, and showing up unannounced, just trying to get our foot in the door. Finally in January, we got access and that proved to be our greatest success, as it allowed us to start handling film, cataloguing the collection, and providing real hands-on experience in the field.
ArLiSNAP: You also organized a one-day symposium, which brought in guest speakers and gave students a chance to present their research. Why did you choose a symposium as your first event? How did that organizational process work?
JM: Technically, our first event was a field trip to the National Preservation Centre at Library and Archives Canada in Gatineau. We had 20 people come along and we got a great tour of the facilities there, and met a bunch of professionals in the field. Mark Haydn and I also attended the AMIA Conference in 2013 and met a bunch of the students at the Eastman House in Rochester, NY. Thanks to these friendships, we were able to organize a trip down there as well, where we got to tour their facilities and participate in a film-handling workshop.
As for the symposium, I heard that all the other groups were doing one, so we just copied them. The process of organizing it wasn’t that difficult. We booked the space at SIS and just sent out a call for papers and presentations to members of our email list. I also contacted David Stevenson, the conservator at the Canadian Centre of Architecture, whom I met on a class field trip, about presenting. I also contacted Phil Spurrell, the proprietor of CineClub Film Society, who I’ve known for several years and volunteered with. He is very knowledgeable about the medium of film and had a lot of interesting experiences working with film.
ArLiSNAP: Have you found someone to hand off the reins to? Do you have any thoughts on the sustainability of the group, long-term?
JM: One of the really encouraging things about our membership was that we had a lot of first-year students who were incredibly eager and motivated. So by the time we started cataloguing the MIRL collection, we were regularly getting 15 to 20 people out to volunteer. So we knew we had a solid base of people who might be able to take over next year. From there, we asked for nominations and were able to come up with a four-person executive committee for another year.
My hope is that some of the connections we made with the folks at LAC, and the folks at Eastman House, will continue and allow for more educational opportunities and networking. Also, the MIRL collection is really outstanding and needs a lot of work to catalogue, plus the cinema space allows for screenings and projections of the collection. This hands-on practical experience is invaluable and I think should be a major factor in the success of the group long-term.
ArLiSNAP: Do you have any ideas or recommendations about how to improve LIS curricula to contain more of the useful things your AMIA chapter is trying to do? Or do you think it’s better off as extracurricular activity?
JM: I feel like the major deficit of the MLIS program is the lack of hands-on experience of working with materials regardless of type. Particularly in the archival end of things, where the theoretical felt very abstract and weird to me. I found my understanding only started to come together through some of the volunteering I was doing at the Jewish Public Library Archives, where I was handling documents, creating finding aids, and writing accession numbers on folders.
Obviously, because of the broad focus of the program, it would be hard to have a dedicated film archiving course, but it is certainly something that could be touched on. Maybe a course dealing directly with the preservation of objects, rather than the theoretical preservation of objects would be useful.
Unfortunately, I think everything is becoming so focused on digital objects and becoming “information specialists” to the detriment of acquiring actual tangible physical skills, which I fear is leaving a lot of graduates ill-equipped to manage the physical aspects of library and archive work. Maybe it’s for the better, as having a broader and more transferable set of skills could help grads deal with the job market, but I can’t help thinking something valuable is being lost in the transition.
We’d love to hear about your experiences with professional associations, and if you’re thinking about starting a student chapter at your school (ARLIS/NA or otherwise). It’s not too late to plan something for the coming school year. Let us know in the comments!
Cataloguer, Louise Bourgeois Archive Project– MOMAPosted: June 15, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Museums, Opportunities: Job Postings Comments Off on Cataloguer, Louise Bourgeois Archive Project– MOMA
Specific responsibilities are as follows:- Enters information into computer database, and prepares and formats it for the online catalogue of Bourgeois’s works: http://www.moma.org/bourgeoisprints.
– Assists with processing new Bourgeois acquisitions and establishing their collection storage.
– Prepares collection-related receipts and acquisitions lists.
– Helps to coordinate photography and imaging requests, as needed.
– Helps to maintain project files and records, in both hard copy and digital formats.
– Works collaboratively with MoMA’s Digital Media, and Collection and Exhibition Technologies Departments and, on occasion, with outside web designers and developers.
– Works collaboratively with the Louise Bourgeois Studio on research matters.
Qualified candidates will possess a Bachelor’s degree, art history preferred, general knowledge of modern and contemporary art and works on paper, and familiarity with print techniques. Prior experience with works of art and collections organization and cataloguing and general office experience preferred. Prior experience with team-based projects preferred. Detail-oriented and well-organized. Knowledge of databases and data processing. Strong research and communication skills (written and oral). Accurate typing required. Ability to collaborate on a team project.
Please submit resume and cover letter, which must include salary requirements, to email@example.com. Please reference the position title in the subject line.
The Museum of Modern Art is an equal opportunity employer and considers all candidates for employment regardless of race, color, sex, age, national origin, creed, disability, marital status, sexual orientation or political affiliation.
Full post here.
Internship– Brooklyn Museum ArchivesPosted: June 13, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Museums, Opportunities: Job Postings Comments Off on Internship– Brooklyn Museum Archives
Internship in the Brooklyn Museum Archives
The Brooklyn Museum is seeking an intern to assist with processing records in the Museum Archives. The intern will process a discrete portion of the institutional records: arrange, perform basic preservation measures, write folder-level descriptions, and enter descriptions into a Microsoft Access database. The intern will gain valuable experience in basic appraisal, processing, creating folder descriptions, and database usage.
Seeking Masters of Library Science/Archives candidates who have some experience or coursework in archival management, be able to perform detailed work and be able to lift records cartons weighing up to 40 pounds.
Schedule: 10-5 one day per week, Monday through Friday.
Compensation: unpaid internship, intern will have Museum volunteer status.
The Museum Archives, a division of the Museum’s Libraries and Archives department, preserves and makes accessible the permanent records of the Museum as well as of the Museum’s parent organization, the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences (1843-1980), and the Institute’s predecessor, the Brooklyn Apprentices’ Library (1823-41). The holdings of the Archives total approximately 2800 linear feet, and include correspondence, photographs, scrapbooks, publications, films, audiovisual materials, artifacts, and ephemera that document the Museum’s exhibitions, objects, outreach, administration, research, and other activities.
Please send a resume, letter of interest, and references via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Museum archivist job openingsPosted: May 18, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Museum Librarianship, Opportunities: Job Postings Comments Off on Museum archivist job openings
Archivist Librarian, The Witte Museum
Archival Assistant (term), Carnegie Museum of Art
Photo archives opportunitiesPosted: April 14, 2014 Filed under: Alternative Careers, Archival Management, Copyright, Images, Opportunities: Job Postings, Photography Comments Off on Photo archives opportunities
Photo Archives Assistant, Pace Gallery
Photography Archivist/Rights and Reproduction, Ronald Feldman Fine Arts
Paid Archives Internship- Lawrence Schiller Archive / Wiener-Schiller ProductionsPosted: March 19, 2014 Filed under: Archives, Images: Photographs, Opportunities: Job Postings Comments Off on Paid Archives Internship- Lawrence Schiller Archive / Wiener-Schiller Productions
Candidates must be extremely detail-oriented and quick learning new technologies. Working knowledge of Microsoft Excel is a must; basic knowledge of photo-editing (Photoshop or Photoshop replacement software) is a plus. Candidates must be able to work under the pressure of a deadline without sacrificing attention to detail.
This is a unique opportunity for the right person: you will gain valuable experience working with a customized photography database, learn the business of maintaining a photography archive, interact with the fine arts and publishing industries, and get to work with vintage images of celebrities and political figures from one of the most exciting decades in American history. You can learn more about the photographer here: http://www.lawrenceschiller.com.
Archival experience or degree preferred but not required.
Our studio/office is located on Columbus Circle. The position pays a stipend. 40 hours per week for a 6 month period.