VRA 2012, Archival Collections Case Studies, 35mm Assessment & Digitization

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Presented by Claire Dienes at the Annual Conference of the Visual Resources Association, April 18th - April 21st, 2012, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Session: Archival Collections Case Studies The digitization of historic archival collections can present a daunting array of challenges. Often archives were collected with poor documentation and little information about the creators or contributors to the collection. The processing of these archival collections sometimes requires special subject area expertise due to the content or special staffing considerations due to the sheer size of the project. This session focuses on three cases in which archival collections are being processed. Each presenter will discuss the special challenges within their own institutions collection and the solutions they have developed in such areas as copyright, workflow, cataloging, and assembling expert teams. MODERATOR: Heather Lowe, California State University San Bernardino PRESENTERS: Trevor Alvord, James Madison University Delivering oral histories Claire Dienes, Metropolitan Museum of Art A 35mm collection assessment & digitization initiative at The Metropolitan Museum of Art Shalimar Fojas White, Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection The Artamonoff Business: Using Collections Research for Outreach and Strategic Communication"

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<ul><li>1.Digital MediaThe Metropolitan Museum of ArtSpecial Exhibition Galleries Views 1970-2004:an assessment and preservation initiative Claire Dienes Digital Media DepartmentThe Metropolitan Museum of ArtVRA Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico, April 2012</li></ul> <p>2. View with people waiting in line to enter the special exhibition "Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty"(May 4-August 7, 2011). Image The Metropolitan Museum of Art 3. View of the special exhibition: "Liberty or Death" (opened October 15, 1976). Photographed in1976-1977. Image The Metropolitan Museum of Art 4. View of the special exhibition: "Plant Forms in Ornament" (March 15-April 20, 1919). Photographedon March 21, 1919. Image The Metropolitan Museum of Art 5. Project Scope and Goals To digitize a collection of original color 35mm photographydocumenting Met special exhibition gallery views 1970-2004 To fully catalogue the resulting digital collection To make digital collection available for educational purposesthrough the ARTstor Digital Library and other on-line platforms,including the Museums website To preserve, via proper housing and storage, the original filmcollection 6. Project ResponsibilitiesMETSelection of slides establish specific selection criteria and selection of physical slidesPhysical preservation of slides in preparation for scanning clean, re-house and re-label filmInventorying and packaging of slides for scanning prepare slides and accompanying spreadsheet for scanner to includeassignment of digital image file name to each slideCataloguing apply descriptive, source and rights metadata to all digital assets and identifymetadata to deliver to ARTstorArchiving of analog collection ensure proper storage of slides in archival binders 7. Project ResponsibilitiesThird-party, off-siteDigitization Digitize slides in both jpeg and tiff formats and deliver on hard drive Minimum resolution specifications for tiffs: 4,000 pixels, 48-bit RGB generatingapproximately 50-60 MB filesQuality control Crop and tonally adjust each image as necessary 8. Project Parameters Limited year span (representing a fraction of available material) Limited to 5,000 views (representing a fraction of availablematerial) Representation across all 17 curatorial departments in the Museum Equal representation across 3+ decades of 1970-2004 Exclude all gallery views that already existed in digital format 9. Selection CriteriaSOURCE OF PHOTOGRAPHYConfirmed Met photography or photography where Museum canclaim copyright 10. Selection CriteriaEXHIBITION TITLESExhibitions whose titles include the name of a living or recentlydeceased artist, or artists whose estates are particularly active, orin which the name of an artist still under copyright, were excludedExhibitions whose titles include the names of private collections orcollectors (unless collection would later become part of the Metscollection or the collector was long deceased) were excluded.Exhibitions that are known to have copyright issues (PicturesGeneration) were excluded 11. Selection CriteriaINDIVIDUAL VIEWSDefinition of gallery view Must show the space in which the objects are installed No close-ups/case-shots Must contain two or more objects 12. View of the special exhibition:"Samuel Colt Presents: ThreePistols for Czar Nicholas"(opened September 11, 1979).Photographed in 1979. Image The Metropolitan MuseumView of the special exhibition: "European Helmets, 1450-1650: Treasuresof Artfrom the Reserve Collection" (January 25, 2000-December 30, 2001).Photographed in 2001. Image The Metropolitan Museum of Art 13. Selection CriteriaINDIVIDUAL VIEWSDefinition of gallery view Must show the space in which the objects are installed Must contain two or more objects No close-ups/case-shotsDuplicate/near duplicate views were excludedShots with recognizable people were excluded 14. Metadata 15. Metadata 16. Metadata 17. Project TimelineSep 10Oct 10 Nov 10Dec 10Jan 11Feb 11 Mar 11 Apr 11Batch cleaned/pre- jpegs slides/tifs cataloging slides1 inventoried catalog- returned to returneddue refiledslides dueingMet to Met(internal (internalto scannerbegins deadline) deadline)Batchcleaned/pre-jpegs slides/tifs cataloging slides2inventoried catalog-returned to returneddue refiled slides dueing Met to Met(internal (internal to scannerbeginsdeadline) deadline)Batchcleaned/pre-jpegs slides/tifs3inventoried catalog-returnedreturned slides dueing to Metto Met to scannerbeginsBatchcleaned/pre-4inventoried catalog- slides dueing to scannerbegins etc. 18. Project TimelineDec 11Jan 12Feb 12Mar 12Apr 12May 12Jun 12 Jul 12Batch slides/tifs cataloging slidesALL7 returneddue refiledto Met(internal (internalMETAdeadline) deadline) DATADUEBatch pre-jpegs slides/tifs cataloging slides8 catalog-returnedreturneddue refileding beginsto Metto Met(internal (internaldeadline) deadline)Batch cleaned/pre-jpegs slides/tifs cataloging slides9 inventoried catalog-returnedreturneddue refiledslides dueing to Metto Met(internal (internalto scannerbeginsdeadline) deadline)Batch cleaned/pre-jpegs slides/tifs catalog10inventoried catalog-returnedreturneding dueslides dueing to Metto Met(internalto scannerbeginsdeadline 19. View of the special exhibition: "Mexico: Splendors of Thirty Centuries" (October 10, 1990-January 13,1991) as installed in the Great Hall. Photographed in 1990. Image The Metropolitan Museum of Art 20. View of the special exhibition: "Thtre de la Mode" (December 8, 1990-April 14, 1991. Photographed in1991. Image The Metropolitan Museum of Art 21. View of the special exhibition: "The Vatican Collections: The Papacy and Art" (February 26-June 12,1983). Photographed in 1983. Image The Metropolitan Museum of Art 22. View of the special exhibition: "In Quest of Comfort: the Easy Chair in America" (November 24, 1971-January 30, 1972). Photographed in 1971. Image The Metropolitan Museum of Art 23. Digital MediaThe Metropolitan Museum of ArtSpecial Exhibition Galleries Views 1970-2004:an assessment and preservation initiative Claire Dienes Digital Media DepartmentThe Metropolitan Museum of ArtVRA Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico, April 2012 </p>