L a
t e
s t

The documenta archiv to receive an important donation: The internationally unique performance art archive "Die Schwarze Lade / the Black Kit: Archive for Performance, Action and Intermedia Art" to be presented by documenta artist Boris Nieslony

D a t e s
& E v
e n t s

Conference: Archiving the Unarchivable – Das Unarchivierbare archivieren


In view of the future documenta Institute and on the occasion of current developments in restoration and conservation science, the documenta archiv is organizing an international conference.


Thursday, November 22 – Saturday, November 24, 2018


Venue: documenta Halle, Du-Ry-Straße 1, 34117 Kassel



© documenta archiv / Anita Back

With its extensive media collection, which serves as analog and digital documentation of the world’s most important art exhibition of contemporary art, the documenta archiv would like to use this conference to discuss the challenges facing media collections and their conservation care in the digital age.


The contributions will focus on documentation, digitization, prevention and conservation; and specifically the question of how much effort must be made to provide a long-term functioning infrastructure so that institutions preserving the memory of something can fulfil their respective missions and their obligations to society.


Questions such as the following will be discussed:

When and how is a performance or an ephemeral work of art well documented? How does the terminology of original, copy and duplicate change? How do we deal with the photographs and audiovisual media created? How can original concepts of spaces, performances and installations be reconstructed in retrospect? What measures should be taken for the use of images by researchers? How does the professional image of media archivists and conservator change?


Concept: Birgit Jooss, Arlett Seidel, Alexander Zeisberg

Organization: Andrea Linnenkohl

Possible changes will be announced via our newsletter.

The conference will be enriched by an information desk of the company "mmpro". The company "mmpro" informs about the Media Asset Management System "Admiral Cloud" used by the documenta archiv to manage and present its digital images.

Video recordings of the conference

The video documentation of the individual program points can be requested. Please send us an e-mail if you require any of the videos.


Thursday, 22 November 2018


18:00 – 21:00

Welcome speeches

Sabine Schormann, documenta und Museum Fridericianum gGmbH

Eric Seng, The Hessen State Ministry for Higher Education, Research and the Arts

Birgit Jooss, documenta archiv



Mediendienst Leistungshölle (Klaus Erich Dietl, Stephanie Müller)


Friday, 23 November 2018


8:30 – 9:30 Registration

Welcome speeches

9:30 – 9:45 Susanne Völker, Department for Culture, City of Kassel

9:45 – 10:00 Birgit Jooss, documenta archiv



Chair Andreas Gardt, University of Kassel


10:00 – 11:00 Dagmar Brunow, Linnaeus University, Växjö- KEYNOTE: Between Remembering and Forgetting: The Archive and Cultural Memory


11:30 – 12:15 Martin Koerber, Deutsche Kinemathek - Museum für Film und Fernsehen, Berlin - Expert Networks to the Rescue, what can we learn from the Film Archives?


12:15 – 13:00 Chris Edwards, J. Paul Getty Trust, Los Angeles - Digitization: Current Practices to Future Prophecies



Second Session: TIME-BASED MEDIA ART: The New Discipline in Conservation


14:30 – 14:45 Chair Arnaud Obermann, State Gallery Stuttgart - Introduction


14:45 – 15:30 Johannes Gfeller, Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design - Time-based Media: Macrotime, Microtime, Transmateriality


15:30 – 16:15 Joanna Phillips, Guggenheim Museum, New York - Time-based Media Conservation in Museum Practice


16:45 – 17:30 Dorcas Müller, ZKM - Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe - Sauve qui peut (les médias)! ZKM | Laboratory for Antiquated Video Systems


17:30 – 18:15 Andreas Weisser, Restaumedia and Doerner Institut, Munich - Ethical challenges in the conservation of time-based media. Do we need a digital Code of Ethics?


18:30 – 19:30 PANEL DISCUSSION, moderated by Johannes Gfeller, Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design



Saturday, 24 November 2018


9:00 – 9:15 Registration


Third Session: TIME-BASED MEDIA ART: Bearing the Challenges of Lifecycle Management


9:15 – 9:30 Chair Alexander Zeisberg, documenta archiv, Kassel - Introduction


9:30 – 10:15 Anne J. Gilliland, University of California, Los Angeles - Ethics, Affects and Technologies of Recovery and Repair in Twenty-first Century Art Archives


10:15 – 11:00 Jonah Westerman, Purchase College, State University of New York - Performance, Pragmatically: Truth Claims in Exhibition Practice


11:30 – 12:15 Daniel G. Andújar, Artist, Barcelona - Against the Archive, as a "political space"


12:15 – 13:00 Tilman Baumgärtel, University of Applied Science, Mainz - Archiving on the Verge of the Digital: Van Gogh TV and "Piazza Virtuale" at documenta 9


14:00 – 15:00 PANEL DISCUSSION, moderated by Nora Sternfeld, Kunsthochschule Kassel


From 15:30 ACCOMPANYING PROGRAM (to be selected)


Harald Kimpel, documenta archiv, Kassel: Tour to the outdoor artworks of documenta

Julia Dummer, Museumslandschaft Hessen Kassel: Tours on the Topic of Conservation at Neue Galerie

Birgit Jooss, documenta archiv, Kassel: Tour at the documenta archiv



Andrea Linnenkohl


T. +49 561 70727-6109

Abstracts of the Speakers

Daniel G. Andújar

Tilman Baumgärtel

Dagmar Brunow

Chris Edwards

Andreas Gardt

Johannes Gfeller

Anne J. Gilliland

Martin Koerber

Dorcas Müller

Arnaud Obermann

Joanna Phillips

Nora Sternfeld

Andreas Weisser

Jonah Westerman

Alexander Zeisberg