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John Sheridan, Manon Janssens, Fiona Orsini, Abigail Wharne & David Baldwin, chaired by Helen Thomas

Archiving the Image

Series: AA Collections Talks
Date: Monday 28 January 2019
Time: 18:30
Venue: AA Lecture Hall

With the demand for digitised archive materials and developments in archiving design records, what strategies can we use to ensure all kinds of images (photographs, drawings, maps) are selected, archived and preserved for the future. Is collaborative working an answer? Is bigger always better or is there a role for the small-scale archive?


Helen Thomas is an architect with a PhD in Art History and Theory from the University of Essex, currently editor and senior research fellow at ETH Zurich. She has worked with digital design records and architecture collections in various situations, from amassing big research projects at Phaidon Press to smaller-scale experiments with Drawing Matter and through teaching, and in her work with the V&A+RIBA Architecture Collections.


John Sheridan is Digital Director at The National Archives, responsible for digital services and digital archiving. He provides strategic direction, developing the people and capability needed to create a disruptive digital archive. He headed the team that created legislation.gov.uk, and led the ‘big data for law’ project, exploring the application of data analytics to the statute book, winning the Halsbury Legal Award for Innovation. Previously, he was co-chair of the W3C e-Government Interest Group, and currently serves on the UK Government’s Data Leaders group and Open Standards Board.


Manon Janssens is Head of Exhibitions and Archives at Zaha Hadid Architects, a practice she joined in 2003. She is responsible for every aspect of exhibition production and has been instrumental in conceiving the fundamental strategy for the management of the physical and digital archives of the practice. Her role maintains oversight for the effective archiving of the practice’s vast collection, whilst simultaneously managing the ever evolving library of digital assets containing over 80,000 images and videos. She continues to oversee and direct the implementation of conservation and preservation strategies, as well as the storage and digitization of the physical items of the collection. Her liaison with external organisations and third parties allows ZHA to share the collection through catalogues and exhibitions globally.


Fiona Orsini is Curator at the RIBA Drawings & Archives Collections, based at the V&A. She has worked for the Royal Institute of British Architects since April 2006 and has curated several exhibitions including Underground Journeys: Charles Holden’s designs for London Transport. She is currently working on a new exhibition about the history and design of swimming baths and lidos in the UK.


Abigail Wharne is Digital Preservation Archivist at West Sussex Record Office (WSRO). She has previously worked for the Black Cultural Archives, University of Sussex Special Collections and with school archives. Her current role is to ensure WSRO’s digital holdings are preserved and made accessible on an ongoing basis.


David Baldwin is currently project manager at London Metropolitan Archives for the London hub of ‘Unlocking our Sound Heritage’, and chair for the ARA Film, Sound and Photography Section. With over 13 years’ experience working with audio-visual and digital archives, he is passionate about the value of digital and its ability to support archives reach new audiences - enabling them to discover, learn and reimagine what they find.


Image: A Rolodex owned by former AA Company Secretary Edouard le Maistre, courtesy AA Archives. 



All lectures are open to members of the public, staff and students unless otherwise stated.


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