Fluid memory: Open Set Lab

Published on January 18th, 2018


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During the panel discussion the presenters will briefly give their statement about how they understand an artistic practice of memory through using archival material. The discussion that follows will focus on their experience by talking about and showing examples of artists and designers using archival content or setting up archival structures to construct their narratives. We will focus on the methods that are used to translate historical events and content to reflect contemporary political and social issues. As well, assess how fragmentation and abstraction of archival material restrict or enable the (re)use of archival materials. At the same time, we will highlight the potentials for collectively building and re-shaping archives – and (collective or individual) memory – from the bottom up. In particular we will focus on the use of digital tools to activate archival processes and records, and, how archiving or appropriating archives in general can be used as tools in social movements, as ways to collectively (re)shape public debates.

Fluid memory: Open Set Lab Closing Conference
Saturday 27 January 2018, 10:00 – 17:00
Hilversum, the Netherlands

Open Set, in collaboration with the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision and AKV St.Joost Master Institute, invites you to the conference Fluid Memory. It is the public closing event of the multidisciplinary research program Open Set Lab: Memories of the Future.

While presenting the development of the Open Set Lab research we aim to inspire new debates and artistic research around archival matters. We invite you to engage in a conversation about the subjects and questions that have been at stake during the program: What are the conditions for rethinking our contemporary relations to the historical material, or reshaping public debates around it? What is the role of artists in this process and if / how it can be done through artistic means? Is there an artistic practice of remembering that can determine our relation to the present and future?

During the period September 2017 – January 2018, a group of designers and artists from the Open Set Lab conducted research while exploring the archive of the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision. From their positions as visual makers and thinkers, the participants of the program examined how they relate to the archive as an institution, algorithmic environment and to the archival material itself. They encountered the archive from their own historical and social standpoints, from their disciplines, cultural backgrounds and subjective perspectives. They reconsidered the material and the structure of the archive in order to challenge it. They chased the ghosts and myths, conventions and icons, forgotten heroes and invisible voices in the archive, in order to show the structures and the power of the narratives living inside it.

Our special guests to address these questions include:

Alongside the presentation of the selected research projects and themes developed during Open Set Lab, this conference will also see the launch of the new edition of the Open Set Reader. The Reader has been developed by the students of the Master in Design Curating & Writing at the Design Academy Eindhoven.


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