PhD Research: Activation of the mnemonic space. A memory space for Net.Art (Karin de Wild)

Posted on Tue, 05/17/2016 - 11:09

Karin de Wild

Title of research project / research interests
Activation of the mnemonic spaceA memory space for Net.Art

How can art museums offer an interactive memory space for Net.Art and which fundamental changes need to be made within the (traditional) memory culture of these institutions?

Dr. Sarah Cook and Dr. Wendy Moncur

Estimated date of completion
May 2018

Previous education and/or work experience

Karin de Wild is a curator and art historian with a special interest for the influence of digital technology on art, museums and cultural memory. After studying art education and art history she finished her MA Museum Curator at the VU University and the University of Amsterdam. During her studies she held internships at the Queens Museum of Art (New York), Stedelijk Museum (Amsterdam) and Kröller-Müller Museum (Otterlo). She worked as a curator at MAMA (centre for contemporary art, Rotterdam) and Bergarde Galleries (gallery and private collection modern and contemporary art, Heerjansdam).

During the nineties a new browser interface known as the World Wide Web transformed the Internet from a non-public (mostly academic and military) medium, into a mass medium accessible to all. Today we may begin to look at this pivotal moment in digital culture again with the fresh eyes of historical distance. From a contemporary perspective the Internet is seen as one of the most important developments in the twentieth century and to understand our present time, it is essential to have knowledge about the Internet. As such the question rises how this form of digital heritage can be preserved for current and future generations.

The responsibility of the art museum would be to research, collect, preserve and present artworks, which contain a critical reflection on the Internet and its role in society. Although art museums are interested, it is remarkable that the artworks that are actually developed within this online environment are mainly being ignored. With the advent of digital technology knowledge is stored in a constant state of flux and is constantly re-shaped under the changing pressures and perspectives of the present. This dynamic mnemonic logic still challenges the museum. Their infrastructure differs and is incompatible with the aims of these artworks. The aim of this research is to explore further possibilities for an interactive memory space for Net.Art within the art museum.

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