Invited MEP Lecture at University of Basel in relation to new collaborations

Grateful to Prof. Dr. Heiko Schuldt (Computer Science) and Prof. Dr. Lukas Rosenthaler (Digital Humanities Lab) at The University of Basel for inviting and hosting Prof. Mark Williams (Dartmouth College) to present a lecture introducing MEP to Computer Science and Digital Humanities faculty and students in June, 2016.

We are excited to be working with the Databases and Information Systems Research (DBIS) Group that Heiko Schuldt directs, especially regarding the iMotion project that he co-directs, and look forward to future collaborations with The University of Basel’s impressive Digital Humanities Lab that Lukas Rosenthaler directs.

Thanks also to Dr. Claudiu-Ioan Tanase, a member of the Databases and Information Systems Research Group and iMotion team, who helped to organize the event.


DOMITOR 2016 Conference in Stockholm: Featured MEP Roundtable

Terrific response to our roundtable about developments in The Media Ecology Project as part of the fabulous DOMITOR conference in Stockholm (June 2016).  The roundtable especially focused on the pilot study of The Paper Print Collection at The Library of Congress, which involves many DOMITOR scholars.  The 2016 conference theme was “Viscera, Skin, and Physical Form: Corporeality and Early Cinema”.

Thanks to Prof. Tami Williams (The University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee) and Ph.D. student Allain Daigle (UWM) for participating in the roundtable with Prof. Mark Williams (Dartmouth College).

Look for more MEP news later this summer about a new and historically important resource regarding The Paper Print Collection that was agreed to at DOMITOR 2016!


MEP Contribution to Fondation Jerome Seydoux-Pathé Archive

Thanks much to Stéphanie Salmon at Fondation Jerome Seydoux-Pathé for utilizing historic archival data that MEP helped to rescue.  Proud to have played a role in this important film history data recovery and implementation, a process that began at the DOMITOR conference in 2014.

The data recovered is the work of Paul Spehr and the his late wife Susan Dalton, legendary figures in the film archive world.  The rescued information includes significant details about Pathé’s pre-1914 film releases, the period when it was arguably the most prominent and powerful motion picture studio in the world.

Special thanks to Dan Rockmore and The Neukom Institute for their support, and especially Mark Boettcher and Bennett Vance for cracking two locked hard drives and performing the data rescue.  We are at work to make a fuller set of the rescued data available as a public resource.

MEP Contribution to Fondation Jerome Seydoux-Pathé Archive


Invited Lecture to Introduce MEP at National Library of Singapore, hosted by The Asian Film Archive

Grateful for the invitation from The Asian Film Archive to introduce The Media Ecology Project at this event at The National Library of Singapore in May, 2016.

The enthusiastic and critically engaged audience included Karen Chan, Executive Director of The Asian Film Archive, librarians and technologists from the National Library of Singapore, faculty from The National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University of Singapore, and Lai Tee Phang, Director of Audio Visual Archives at The National Archives of Singapore and a member of the National Library Board.

Special thanks to Prof. Kristy Kang (The School of Art, Design, and Media at Nanyang Technological University) for serving as respondent to the lecture by Prof. Mark Williams (Dartmouth College), and for helping to coordinate the event.


Invited Lecture introducing MEP at Hong Kong Baptist University

Digital Humanities and the Historical Archive Symposium (May 2016)

Grateful to have been invited to deliver a keynote talk about The Media Ecology Project at this exciting Digital Humanities event at Hong Kong Baptist University!

Thanks to Prof. Ian Aitken (HKBU) for this opportunity.  Grateful also to Rebekah Wong of the HKBU Library for her work with MEP on the Films Division of India pilot, and especially to Dr. Camille Deprez for her written contributions to that pilot study.


NEH Research and Development Grant for MEP!

NEH Logo

Proud to announce we have received an NEH Tier 1 Research and Development Grant from the Office of Preservation and Access to build a Semantic Annotation Tool (SAT).

The two-year grant begins Jan 1, 2016, and is also supported by Dartmouth College in myriad ways.

Special continued thanks to The Department of Film and Media StudiesDeans of Faculty and of Arts and Humanities, The Committee for Scholarly Innovation and Advancement, The Office of the ProvostThe Neukom InstituteThe Leslie Center for the HumanitiesThe Dartmouth College Library, and Information Technology Services at Dartmouth! NEH Research and Development Grant for MEP!


Films Division of India (Mumbai)

We are delighted to announce a pilot study in cooperation with The Films Division archive in Mumbai, India.

From the Films Division website:

“The Films Division of India was established in 1948 to articulate the energy of a newly independent nation. For more than six decades, the organization has relentlessly striven to maintain a record of the social, political and cultural imaginations and realities of the country on film. It has actively worked in encouraging and promoting a culture of film-making in India that respects individual vision and social commitment.

It is the main film-medium organization of the Government of India and is well equipped with trained film personnel, cameras, recording and editing facilities. This infrastructure is put to use to assist in- house as well as free-lance film makers and producers.

In its archives, the Films Division of India holds more than 8000 titles on documentaries, short films and animation films.”


Orphan Film Symposium 2014

Orphans 9, Amsterdam
(March 30 – April 2, 2014)

In the next few posts we will be recapping some of the exciting developments for The Media Ecology Project in the year since we held our opening symposium at Dartmouth College. This is the third of five installments focusing on conference presentations about MEP in 2013-2014..

The 9th Orphan Film Symposium, hosted by NYU Cinema Studies, the EYE Institute, and the University of Amsterdam focused on The Future of Obsolescence, which presented a perfect opportunity to present MEP to an international community of archivists, academics, and artists from more than 30 countries.  Orphanistas are committed to the discovery and preservation of what might otherwise be shunned and ignored historical media.

Mark Cooper (University of South Carolina), Karen Cariani (WGBH), and Mark Williams(Dartmouth) presented on a panel entitled “New Research Networks for Obsolete Media,” which was moderated by Scott Curtis (Northwestern University).  The panel had been proposed as one of the initiatives of the MEP Symposium at Dartmouth in May, 2013.

This was the first Orphans Symposium hosted outside the U.S., and featured many memorable events and screenings, including a keynote address entitled “The Poetics of Obsolesence” by Thomas Elsaesser (University of Amsterdam).

Thanks as always to Orphans founder and congenial spirit Dan Streible (NYU), part of the MEP Symposium, who deserves a MacArthur Fellowship for his inestimable work to transform a bad object–orphaned media–into a powerful and inspired international movement. We are also extremely grateful to our gracious host: head curator at EYE, Giovanna Fossati, who is Professor of Film Heritage and Digital Film Culture at University of Amsterdam.

FYI, here a post about The Eye Institute’s commitment to leadership in digitisation and restoration of film history.

Thanks to Mac Simonson for his help with this post!


SCMS Recaps 2013 & 2014

In the next few posts we will be recapping some of the exciting developments for The Media Ecology Project in the year since we held our opening symposium at Dartmouth College. This is the second of five installments focusing on conference presentations about MEP in 2013-2014.

The Society for Cinema and Media Studies conferences have been invaluable to The Media Ecology Project as opportunities for collegial and intellectual exchange. In March of 2013 we provided an overview of MEP and its intended architecture for a workshop entitled “Designing for Open Access.”  Little did we expect that a raging Chicago snowstorm would delimit participation during this opening conference session, but Mark Williams was able to Skype in workshop chair Eric Hoyt (University of Wisconsin, Media History Digital Library) as he awaited the morning bus from Madison.  James Steffen (Emory) helped to lead a spirited discussion of open access goals and the work it takes to sustain them.  Hoyt also participated in the May 2013 symposium at Dartmouth, and is a most valued colleague and participant in MEP.

At the 2014 conference in Seattle, MEP was featured in a workshop entitled “The Televisual Archive: New Directions of Research and Access” which allowed us to introduce and promote two of our pilot projects that specifically demonstrate the usefulness of television archives for studying  the history of the 20th century.

Excellent colleagues Mark Cooper (University of South Carolina) and Amelie Hastie (Amherst) discussed insights drawn from their experience in utilizing archives for original primary research.  Especially notable was the participation of two essential resources from the U.S. television archive world: Karen Cariani from the WGBH Archive in Boston and Mark Quigley from the UCLA Film and Television Archive. Cooper had just finished serving as the Acting Director of the Moving Image Research Collection at The University of South Carolina.  The MIRC, WGBH and UCLA Archives are central participating partners in MEP, especially regarding the News pilot project and the pilot devoted to augmenting study of the historic television series In the Life, which assays gay and lesbian life in the U.S.