Day 2

Q: How to find and organize all that data? A: Zotero! Well, a partial answer, anyway. A very good answer, I think, for how to keep track of bibliographic sources, archival documents, and images. It still seems I will need a different kind of database to create the internet interface I want to have. This IS only day two of our ten-day workshop, however, so I am sure there will be lots of answers to the big question of HOW TO MAKE THIS PROJECT A REALITY.

It was fun to play around with Zotero today, and to discuss many issues about finding and organizing information. I am happy to be meeting art historians from all over and with many specializations. There is even an art historian from Brazil—ouch, Brazil! that was a painful loss today—and one from Argentina, too—let’s go, Argentina! for the Americas! But I digress.

Today’s homework is to “identify relevant digital repositories and consider ways to create an intentional archive of sources.” That seems both easy and difficult. Easy because I do already know many good sources. Difficult because there are surely several more and I don’t want to miss any. One wonderful font of sources for my project will undoubtedly be the ICAA–MFAH’s “Documents of Twentieth-Century Latin American and Latino Art.” But how useful will it be to add documents from that site to my own intentional archive of sources when they already have a tool for saving “my documents” on their site? I suppose I will want to have all documents specific to my project saved in one place, like Zotero. Another repository that I know I will use is the Biblioteca Virtual of the Biblioteca Luis Ángel Arango (Bogotá), especially for the Colombian biennials. Fellow institute participant Georgina Gluzman has pointed me to the Internet Archive as a good place to find “many primary sources on Argentina and Latin America.” I look forward to scouring those sites, to begin with, for information to help build my project. Now that I know a bit more about metadata, I am wondering, will they have metadata that I can easily scrape to save some time? So much to discover.

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Biblioteca Luis Ángel Arango’s Biblioteca Virtual is a great place to search for sources on Colombian art and a site I have used heavily in other projects. They have many of their own more recent art exhibition catalogs available online, as well as images from their permanent collection, but much, much more since they are primarily a library.

Altogether, another satisfying, if exhausting, day. As another participant Tweeted, it’s like “digital art history bootcamp.”

Source: Day 2