MOCA Online Exhibition Archive

« The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles announced the launch of its online exhibition archive, providing extensive information and images from all MOCA exhibitions dating from 1983 to 2004. The archive, which is searchable by keyword or date and fully accessible to the general public at moca.org/archive, provides an invaluable resource to students, scholars, and aficionados of contemporary art. The project was made possible by a generous grant from the Getty Foundation’s Pacific Standard Time: Art in L.A. 1945-1980 funding initiative (previously known as the On the Record funding initiative)-developed specifically to help Southern California arts institutions arrange and describe their archival materials and make them available to researchers. The $280,000 grant was awarded to MOCA in 2005.

« The online exhibition archive reflects MOCA’s achievements, documenting more than 20 years of groundbreaking work done by this institution, » said MOCA Chief Curator Paul Schimmel. « Our critically acclaimed exhibitions have presented significant works from California, the United States, and the international scene-in the process capturing the history of this time and this region. The archive gives an in-depth view of how these exhibitions were made, providing a rich resource for scholars, artists, and the general public. »

MOCA’s online exhibition archive is notable for its user-friendly, image-driven interface, which was custom-designed by MOCA staff. Each exhibition entry features a brief description of the exhibition, installation images where available, and a container list of available text documents associated with the show. These include project descriptions; exhibition checklists; correspondence with artists, lenders, co- organizers, and participating venues; curators’ notes; budget and funding proposals; loan agreements; installation designs; catalogue production material; printed ephemera; press releases and media coverage; and information on education programs. While the images are accessible through the website as low-resolution jpegs, qualified researchers must contact MOCA’s library to gain access to exhibition documents and higher-resolution images. »

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(Source: Dexigner Newsletter of March 23rd 2009)

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