Preserving websites in contemporary art: stakes and difficulties in collecting the Web at the Bibliothèque nationale de France

Abstract : In 2001 the French national library began the harvest of French websites, aiming at copying the whole French Web (3 million sites), thus fulfilling its Legal deposit mission which was extended in 2006 to the Internet. To this end we use a robot, and in order to complete this automatic, but sometimes incomplete harvest, an intellectual selection is made by specialists in every subject. In the field of art, the websites which are mostly very small, filled with images and animations, less consulted and less referenced than the star sites of the Web, are indeed particularly difficult to spot. For contemporary art, the Web offers an incomparable wealth of information : it gives biographical or visual information on artists who have not yet been the subject of a paper publication. The Web also interests performers and graffiti artists who find there an easy and non institutional way to display their work. It also keeps a trace of the art of gardens, short-lived by definition, as are exhibitions, festivals and conferences. Blogs are reminders of the history of taste and debates around the 2000s ; virtual visits inform us about museography, and with the interviews of artists or curators, works of art, interactive or not, disseminated or made on-line, we can see art as a work in process. Preserving those sites will offer future researchers an unequalled field of resources. A rich collection has been already constituted in the French national library, particularly in the field of contemporary art, where many insider sites have been spotted. Nevertheless there is still a more technical question : the quality of copies. Software is often made by artists themselves or they use graphic applications which can be quite difficult to harvest. The evolution of its capture is the key to a better quality of copies which we wish to preserve.
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Conference papers
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https://hal-bnf.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01579279
Contributor : Françoise Jacquet <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, August 30, 2017 - 6:36:56 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, October 19, 2017 - 2:40:09 PM

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Françoise Jacquet. Preserving websites in contemporary art: stakes and difficulties in collecting the Web at the Bibliothèque nationale de France. Art Now! Contemporary Art Resources in a Library Context - IFLA Art Libraries Section Satellite Meeting, ARLIS/ Norden; IFLA-Art libraries, Audiovisual & multimedia Aug 2012, Helsinki, Finland. ⟨hal-01579279⟩

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