Call for Proposals: FAIR Use of Artist Interviews for Conservators and Curators 2024, Amsterdam, NL

Posted on Wed, 02/28/2024 - 11:50
OH-SMArt project logo

Expert Meeting: Thursday, November 28th, 2024
SBMK Day: Friday, November 29th, 2024

Call for proposals: FAIR use of Artist Interviews for Conservators and Curators

Interested parties are invited to submit proposals for presentation and publication in the context of the joint OH-SMArt Symposium 2024 & SBMK day 2024: FAIR use of Artist Interviews for Conservators and Curators. This event is being hosted by the University of Amsterdam, in conclusion of its three year research project Oral History – Stories at the Museum around Artworks (OH-SMArt), and SBMK (Foundation for the Conservation of Contemporary Art). The symposium, preceded by an expert meeting, is meant to share expertise, address concerns and initiate future collaborations. Symposium contributions will be published in a peer reviewed open access publication, in line with the project’s goal to be FAIR about insight into artworks and their care.

Central to this project is the use of oral history for conservation research, following the FAIR Principles for research data which should secure and improve its findability, accessibility, interoperability and reusability. This can be a challenge with spoken narratives, due to ethical questions, the laborious strain of processing interview materials, lack of tools and infrastructure. However, all of these elements are crucial to consider for knowledge dissemination. Museums and institutions often hold a surplus of unique interview materials that often go unseen by researchers and professionals who would use it as a tool in their conservation practice. How then, can this be shared and prepared for further analysis in research, given the ever-growing possibilities for digital analysis? The three-year project OH-SMArt, funded by the Dutch Platform for Digital Infrastructure – Social Sciences and Humanities (PDI-SSH), has made a start in addressing this by developing a long-term digital research infrastructure for oral history with research into artworks as a use case. OH-SMArt (2022-2025) is led by the University of Amsterdam in collaboration with DANS-KNAW (Data Archiving and Networked Services), Sound and Vision, Foundation for Open Speech Technology and the University of Twente.

The symposium and expert meeting will focus especially on interoperability and reuse. Contributions are welcome concerning dissemination and lowering the threshold for reuse, in addition to linking data to deepen knowledge on artist’s practices and their artworks worldwide. We are interested in proposals from, but not exclusively, researchers, conservators, artists, curators, oral history data collection managers, experts in digital archiving and museum professionals who have research with spoken narratives addressing one or more of the following topics:

– Processing and depositing interview materials, including Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), transcript correction tools, and other natural language processing tools.
– Addressing FAIR Principles with sensitive oral history material in light of data protection laws (GDPR).
– Findability of oral history archives on artworks and linking data collections.
– Accessibility of research outside of academia, to cultural heritage professionals, artists and students.
– Interviews conducted by non-native speakers or multi-lingual speakers, including improved accessibility.
– Interoperability, from issues of consent and preferred file types to linked open data and digital research tools for oral history.
– Reuse of interviews in conservation research, including interviews with all stakeholders around works of art and cultural heritage as well as conservation obstacles and their possible solutions.
– The development of tools for reflection that address the researcher’s role in the use and interpretation of oral history.

Proposals, for both the Expert Meeting and the SBMK day, specifically addressing FAIR Data and Open Science for various types of contributions are welcome in 300-500 words, if possible, in proofread English, alongside a separate file with the author(s) bio(s), 50-words each, named with a subject-based common denominator.
The OH-SMArt Expert Meeting preceding the symposium is aimed at establishing an international network to pursue FAIR use of interviews in conservation. Museums, institutions, and managers of art specific oral history collections, as well as those with dedicated technical expertise are invited to apply by explaining how you would like to contribute (100 words + bio, as above). Participants are welcome to submit proposal for both days, but those chose for the OH-SMArt Expert Meeting are expected to actively contribute in discussion.

Send your abstracts and ideas as soon as possible, but no later than 15 April 2024, to Consent from all parties should be included with any mention of interview materials as these abstracts will be published to advertise the symposium. Authors will be notified by June 1st. Acceptance includes the expectation that manuscripts are turned in no later than the symposium, deadline 29th of November 2024.