Archives and libraries are currently overcome with anxiety about protocols, rules and regulations, but it might be better to focus on linking to what people (not institutions) need to celebrate and remember, and understand archival and library work as performative. Drawing on the experience gathered over eight years of work at the Prelinger Library and in participatory media archives Rick Prelinger will raise some questions that are central to anyone working with or around archives and libraries today. How can past media transitions help us make more informed decisions in the future? Are we moving toward greater archival centralization, or are we entering a landscape where an unlimited number of collections flourish? How will personal and corporate or institutional collections influence and change one another? Are archives gearing their services and offerings toward classes of users that don’t really exist, while users seek archives that haven’t yet been created? What’s really new, and what just looks new?
Rick Prelinger is an archivist, writer and filmmaker. He has been an active player in the stock footage field since 1985, and his collection is now represented worldwide by Getty Images. Beginning in 2000, he partnered with Internet Archive to make 2,100 (soon to be 5,000) films available online for free viewing, downloading and reuse. His archival feature Panorama Ephemera (2004) played in venues around the world, and his new feature project No More Road Trips? received a Creative Capital grant in 2012. His Lost Landscapes projects have played to many thousands of viewers in San Francisco, Detroit and elsewhere. Prelinger is a board member of Internet Archive and frequently writes and speaks on the future of archives and issues relating to archival access and regeneration. With Megan Prelinger, he co-founded the Prelinger Library, an appropriation-friendly private research library open to the public in downtown San Francisco.
Rick Prelinger and the Prelinger Library. Photo by Cory Doctorow (Wikimedia)
Monday, July 16th at 7.30 pm. This event will be in English. Limited seating.