Emily Crane is a PhD student at the University of East Anglia. Her PhD focuses on the contemporary artist exchanges within the Triangle Network, with specific focus on Africa and South Asia and is entitled Navigating the void: The Triangle Network of artist-led initiatives. Crane has become a contributor to the Triangle blog. In this, her first blog post Crane shares her experience of looking through the archive of Triangle activity, currently housed at Gasworks, London, and discusses the nature of the archive more generally.
The infallibility of the archive has long been exposed to its more fragmentary and partial nature, capable of being utilised, manipulated and distorted. What is included and excluded is a political concern, and what constitutes an archive has been questioned.
With this in mind, it is almost impossible to conceive of what an archive of a network such as Triangle might look like. How can a multifaceted set of relationships across the world be represented in any single place, and how can the explosive creative activities that happen throughout the network be represented by administrative papers, photographs and booklets?
Considering these nonsensical questions, I have nevertheless been spending much time pouring through the archival boxes stored at Gasworks. Aware of the partiality of the stories such an archive might suggest to me, I continue to look with the addiction of a treasure hunter with my metal detector in hand. The boxes hold over twenty years of materials that have been accumulate through the London office: correspondences in the form of letters, cards, faded faxes and emails; reports and meeting minutes; funding applications; newspaper clippings, gallery flyers, workshop catalogues, artist postcards; and the occasion sketch, artist publication, poster or workshop related remnant. Although much of the materials I have been considering are tied to specific logistical arrangements for workshops or studio buildings, there is a wealth of material collected that more generally pertains to events happening in many artworlds across the globe. Read the rest of this entry →