“Archival materiality as connective tissue” – Online Archive Research Community talk featuring Wendy Russell and Sue Breakell

Pixabay copyright free - archive boxes on shelves

Wednesday 17 January 2024, 1330

Online talk featuring Wendy Russell and Sue Breakell

Archival materiality as connective tissue  

The next talk from the Archive Research Community will be held online on Wednesday 17 January at 1330. It will be an online talk by Wendy Russell (British Film Institute) and Sue Breakell (Archive Director, University of Brighton Design Archives) about archival materiality. Wendy and Sue are the co-editors of the recent collection The Materiality of the Archive: Creative Practice in Context (2023). We look forward to seeing you! 

If you would like to enquire about coming along to this online event please contact us here.

“In this session we will discuss our newly-published co-edited volume The Materiality of the Archive: Creative Practice in Context (Routledge).  Through this volume the editors foster collaborative approaches to archives of creative practice, harnessing the potential of materiality as connective tissue across a range of disciplines and practices. Taking a broad view of the archive’s agency, its focus on archives of creative practice emphasises their generative possibilities, foregrounding the fluidity, blurred boundaries and expanded notions of the archive that are characteristic of creative practices and their complex materialities and immaterialities.  

In our conversation, we will contextualise ideas of archival materiality including its articulation in the curation of the volume’s contents, which move outwards from archive studies through an interdisciplinary frame in four sections: ‘In the Archive: Practices and Encounters’‘With the Archive: Energy’; ‘About the Archive: Technologies’and ‘Beyond the Archives: Expanding the Frame’.  Through this sequence the book moves outwards from the archive, yet is always held in relation to it, in a ‘diagram of active forces’ (Yaneva 2020).  Breakell will also reference her own chapter in the volume, which uses the archival fonds as itself an object of material analysis. Lastly, Russell will highlight some of her recent work on the material engagement with archives at the BFI, specifically with the continuity script for Kes.”

The Archive Research Community (ARC) is a cross-disciplinary group of like-minded researchers, students, and archivists primarily based in the Culture & Creativity Research Institute at Sheffield Hallam University. The ARC launched in November 2022 and meets on a monthly basis. The ARC’s aim and objectives can be viewed here and the membership here.

If you are interested in participating in the ARC or learning more about the group’s work, please email the convenor of the group, James Fenwick. Details here.