All artists and arts organizations produce records of their work and practice. These records have great value, but caring for them can be a challenge, or even a burden. To provide independent artists and smaller companies with tools and guidance for managing and preserving their records, Dance Heritage Coalition created the Artist’s Legacy Toolkit and Records Management Guide, which was recently updated and redesigned with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation.
This suite of online resources includes tips on what to save, how to organize and store both physical and digital materials, advice on digitizing video and audio items, templates for creating inventories and recording information about what you have, and information about copyright, what’s involved in donating your collection to an institutional archive, and best practices for making your collection accessible. These guides were specifically designed to help artists and organizations with limited resources and without dedicated staff, infrastructure, or expertise for archiving. Go here and scroll down to find the new set of tools as a downloadable zip file.
Archiving is not just about dusty boxes or digital file storage! Read about artists who have developed creative projects to tell their own stories using legacy materials, and built living archives that reflect their unique creative process.
If you have any questions about the Toolkit or would like to discuss your own collection, contact Imogen Smith, Director of Archiving and Preservation at Dance/USA: email@example.com.
Dance Heritage Coalition is currently integrating into Dance/USA, the national service organization for professional dance. DHC was founded in 1992 as an alliance of major dance research institutions with a mission to support documenting, preserving, and creating access to America’s dance legacy. As a program of Dance/USA, we will continue to offer hands-on help to the dance field with archiving and preservation, as well as workshops, training, and free resources to build skills and empower artists to take control of their own legacies. We will also continue working to make dance research collections available and to promote engagement with the rich history of dance.
There will be opportunities to connect with dance archivists at Dance/USA’s Annual Conference in Los Angeles June 6-9, 2018.