11. Database for the Documentation of Contemporary Art University

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11. Database for the Documentation of Contemporary Art
University of Amsterdam
Supervisors: Prof. dr. Julia Noordegraaf (promotor); prof.dr.ir. Arjen de Vries Centrum Wiskunde &
Informatica (CWI) (co-promotor)
The conservation of contemporary art requires exchange of documentation, knowledge, and expertise
as well as collaboration across institutional and national borders. A specific challenge is the variation
in the appearance of contemporary artworks: this requires a documentation of their various
manifestations. Currently, the International Network for the Conservation of Contemporary Art
(INCCA) provides an online platform for the documentation of and research into contemporary art. 1
Whether this database meets the user needs from conservation and research practice has not yet been
investigated. This project asks the question, how to design a digital infrastructure for the
documentation of and research into the manifestations of contemporary artworks? It aims to
provide insight into the use of contemporary art documentation by practicing conservators, curators,
and researchers, and to design a digital infrastructure that accommodates this use. The research is
divided in three separate phases:
1. An analysis of the current use of the INCCA database by practicing conservators, curators and
researchers;
2. The design and construction of the NACCA project database, containing the documentation
and research produced within the ITN;
3. Design of a digital infrastructure for the documentation of and research into contemporary
artworks, including a) an evaluation of the design and use of the NACCA project database; b)
a proposal for how to adapt the INCCA database to realize the desired infrastructure; c) an
integration of the NACCA project database in the INCCA database.
In order to ensure the long-term sustainability and accessibility of the project database, the possibility
of integration into the Digital Research Infrastructure for the Arts and Humanities (DARIAH) will be
explored.
1
http://www.incca.org/what-is-the-incca-database
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