FILE FESTIVAL LAUCHES DIGITAL ARCHIVE, MAKING AVAILABLE THE LAST 5 YEARS OF ITS 20 YEARS OF HISTORY COLLECTION.
FILE FESTIVAL organization makes public, through the Brazilian free software TAINACAN, a unique collection of its kind, gathering the last 5 years of its achievements in an accessible and free of charge online environment.
São Paulo, fevereiro de 2022 – FILE – Eletronic Language Internacional Festival – now launches the FILE ARCHIVE, an online collection that brings together its last 5 years of events held for the development and promotion of Art and Technology in Brazil. The collection intends to be expansive and gradually include items of more than 20 years of history of the organization with more than 49 exhibitions, and the participation of about 8,000 works and artists from more than 48 countries. The archive proposes to be a repository of ideas and media that were creatively explored by the avant-garde of electronic art in their correspondent time in history and continue to foster new practices and academic studies in the most diverse areas of artistic production in the digital age, such as installations, performances, video art, sound art, animations, games, web art, bioart, NFTs, algorithmic art, etc. The project is supported by ProAC Expresso Lab, which aims to produce and hold cultural and creative economy festivals in an online space; becoming a fundamental support for this project’s activity.
Co-founded by Paula Perissinotto and Ricardo Barreto, the festival has become a Brazilian cultural platform of international visibility that encourages artists on the national stage and stimulates aesthetic, cultural and scientific manifestations, produced in digital art. Since its first realization in 2000, the organization has maintained a vast collection of documents and records submitted for project’s participation. The content gathered in these more than 20 years has become a relevant source of data to understand the transformations in research, past and present, of aesthetics related to technology.
The collection is composed of items initially archived in a physical environment, such as biographies, synopses, information about symposia, workshops, performances and festival awards, as well as born-digital items, such as publications and photographic / video records of exhibitions and works. The incipient organization of this content began in 2012 with Gabriella Previdello, a researcher and digital curator who, after a year of dedication to the physical archive, turned her investigation into a master’s thesis published in 2013, entitled “Treatment of information in the digital arts: a contemporary approach to documentation in technological means”, under the guidance of Prof. Dr. Marilda Lopes Ginez de Lara, in the Area of Concentration: Culture and Information, as part of the research line Organization of Information and Knowledge at the School of Communication and Arts of the University of São Paulo.
Currently, Paula Perissinotto has continued the process of organizing the festival’s vast physical collection as an object of research in her doctorate, under the guidance of Prof. Dr. Silvia Laurentiz, in the Visual Poetics area, also at the USP School of Communication and Arts. The festival’s co-founder conceived the FILE ARCHIVE, and began adapting the physical content for online availability, through cataloging and digitization. The project is also a continuation of the FILEALIVE / ARQUIVOVIVO meetings, held by the organization in March 2021, which articulated in favor of the memory and preservation of digital art, some of the main archives oriented to the preservation and dissemination of contemporary artistic knowledge, such as ISEA Symposium Archives, the Archive of Digital Art and the Ars Electronica Archive.
Also during the FILEALIVE online meetings, Professor Dalton Martins, from the PGGCinf Graduate Program in Information Science at the Faculty of Information Science (FCI) at the University of Brasília (UnB), presented TAINACAN free software as a highly flexible alternative to digital repositories. The tool, which has a Tupi-Guarani name, is linked to the Federal University of Goiás and, together with UnB and the Brazilian Institute of Information in Science and Technology (IBICT), constitute its triad of offices. The development of the software began in 2014 as a technical and academic element that is part of a national policy of digital collections of the Ministry of Culture, being used in numerous archives of Brazilian institutions central to the preservation of national memory, such as the Instituto do Patrimônio Histórico e Artístico Nacional (IPHAN), the Brazilian Institute of Museums (IBRAM), and the National Arts Foundation (FUNARTE).
The open source software was chosen as the data management base that will organize and share, in a gradual, accessible and free of charge way, the items of the FILE FESTIVAL collection. The institution is committed to make available all the content generated over the two decades of history. For this, the initial input in the digital archive will correspond to the last 5 years of events (2021 to 2017). Some of the data will also be added to Wikidata, the collaborative multilingual database of Wikimedia platforms, which operates as a central storage repository and connects collections through the unified organization of metadata. This common language enables the interconnection between databases of partner institutions, such as the participants of the GLAM Project (Galleries, Libraries, Archives & Museums) of the Portuguese-speaking Wikipedia, a project focused on themes related to art, culture and education, with which FILE also starts to collaborate by providing information on its collection.
In parallel with digitization, the festival’s vast physical collection continues to be inventoried and catalogued, for future institutionalization. FILE believes that the transfer of content directly contributes to the circulation of specialized information and to the creation of new projects and research in art and culture in the country.