Archiving and Researching Media Art in Israel: Challenges, Innovative Solutions, and Potential International Collaborations

Symposium:


Session Title:

  • Papers at the Summit on New Media Archiving

Presentation Title:

  • Archiving and Researching Media Art in Israel: Challenges, Innovative Solutions, and Potential International Collaborations

Presenter(s):



Abstract:

  • The presentation offers an introduction to the media art scene in Israel, with a focus on particular budding initiatives and innovative solutions for archiving, and for academic involvement in media art history research. Options for international collaboration with Israeli academia and industry will be discussed.
    A brief introduction to the vibrant community of media artists and academics involved in media art history research is followed by a review of the existing venues for media art exhibition in Israel— the Print Screen media art festival, CCA Tel Aviv, Design Museum Holon, and the Open University Gallery in Ra’anana being cases in point.

    While Israeli media artists are relatively well represented in international venues, the absence of advanced archiving capacities, and thus of due research and analysis of the corpus, calls for action. I will discuss the need to collaborate with international initiatives, which in turn may benefit from the technological know-how that Israeli industry and academia may offer, especially in the field of cyber-tech. Importantly, Israel is an EU partner country, and thus eligible for EU grant applications. For example, the Open University of Israel and Danube University Krems Department of Image Science were recently awarded a 3-year Erasmus Plus Mobility grant.

    The presentation focuses on an initiative begun at the Open University of Israel (OUI), teaming up with partners in industry to seek advanced technological solutions for preserving and archiving media art. A pilot trial at the OUI is forthcoming, exploring VR as a medium for preservation and revivification of media art installations, making them accessible for research and education purposes. The project benefits from the OUI Center for Technology in Distance Education (Shoham), developing and operating a myriad of platforms that supports distance academic learning. The venture further involves independent VR programmers, besides the Israeli startup Niio (niio.com/site), offering specialized cloud and high quality streaming services for video art festivals, galleries and artists worldwide. A potential funding option is Digital Israel, a government initiative supporting the development of MOOCS and distance learning solutions. I invite international partners to share and help further the vision of an advanced VR archive affording access to no-longer extant media art installations, for the benefit of media art histories research and education.


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