We began with a Special General Meeting, before we got into the final two sessions.
The first focused on 'Practitioners and their Communities', the speakers were Helen Clifford and Sian Lile-Pastore. Helen described her time as Artist in Residence at the WARP (Wales Artist Resource Programme) Library. She was interested in libraries as creative and changing spaces, and threads and interconnections between users and between resources. As a member of staff in the Library at Cardiff Metropolitan University, Helen also explored cataloging and classification, and described how she covered many of the books in the Library so that they had to be opened to discover the contents, brave words in a room full of librarians!
|Photo courtesy of Helen Clifford|
Sian spoke to us about the National Museum Cardiff Youth Forum and the 'Smashed' alternative guide to the Fragile? contemporary ceramics exhibition that they produced. Key to the success of the project was working with numerous different external partners to guide and advise the group on photography, design, and interview techniques.
After lunch the final session 'Making Visual Visual Resources' definitely fitted into the conference theme of 'mining the resources'. Andrew Ellis updated us on the progress of the Public Catalogue Foundation, and projects such as Tagger and Art Detective which aim to aid discover-ability and fill in gaps in knowledge. John Davies and Kristen Marshall talked to us about the slide collections at the Visual Resources Centre, Manchester Metropolitan University, filling us in on it's background and the threats to it's survival. Kristin described the projects they've undertaken to raise awareness of the collections and hold off on it's disposal, including Project(ed) Voices, #slideoftheday and Adopt a Slide. It was great that at the end of their presentation they were able to announce that the collection was to be transferred to the University's Special Collections department, which should ensure their survival.
|Courtesy of @VisResCentreMMU|
The last presentation was from Vicky Brown on visual literacy [see slides from her presentation here], she showed us some examples of initiatives that seek to teach visual reading and thinking skills. Her presentation was supposed to be joint with Jenny Godfrey, who unfortunately couldn't attend, but luckily she had conducted a virtual presentation on the same subject earlier and Vicky was able to play a recording. Jenny described to us a project for students called the 'Baby Cage' which was designed to test research and critical thinking as students explore an assigned image [see slides from the presentation here]. Vicky also played us a fab Pathé video that students found relating to the image they'd been investigating.
The conference closed with people rushing off to catch their various trains, all three days had a great buzz and energy about them, roll on Dublin!!
Tweets from Day 3 are Storifyed here.
Fuller write ups of the various sessions will be published in an upcoming issue of Art Libraries Journal.