Department of Art & Art History

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Visual Arts Complex
Visual Arts Complex

Slide Deaccessioning

August 27, 2010

Now that all permanent faculty members use digital images in the classroom, the VRC will embark on its slide deaccessioning project.  This project will occur between September 1, 2010 and May 1, 2012.

As of January 1, 2011, the slide collection will no longer circulate.  All of our staffing is needed for our digitization work and for the slide deaccessioning project – circulating slides during this time would interfere with these duties.

While the majority of images in the slide collection do not represent unique content, there are many slides that cannot be readily found elsewhere, and in some cases are unique to our collection.  Therefore, we cannot simply dispose of the slide collection en masse.  With input from faculty, we will determine which slides we should retain and which may be eventually discarded.

The VRC will be going through the slide collection methodically in the coming months.  We will keep some slides indefinitely, and others we will keep with the intention of scanning eventually, after which we will dispose of them.  Details about the VRC’s method are listed below, followed by the ways that faculty members are invited and encouraged to participate in this process.

The VRC’s Process

The VRC will set aside the following:

  • Original slides with labels indicating that current or former faculty members photographed them (the VRC will keep these indefinitely and scan them by request)
  • Images of current or former faculty artwork (the VRC will keep these indefinitely and scan them by request)
  • Images related to the Visiting Artist Program (the VRC will keep these until they are all scanned)
  • MFA thesis slides (the VRC will keep these indefinitely and intends to eventually scan them all; will scan them by request in the meantime)
  • Other slides that we know are from rare sources or not readily available elsewhere (the VRC will keep these until they are scanned)

Faculty Involvement

We strongly encourage Art and Art History faculty to participate in this process, as faculty members were of course instrumental in building the slide collection.  Please remember that you have until May 1, 2012 to provide the VRC with your input.

For the content not listed above, here is information about requesting slides to be set aside for scanning:

  • Give the slides you select to be set aside for scanning to Lia or Elaine, but please read the following first!
  • Do not dispose of or take personal possession of any slides at any point in this process.
  • If there is a deadline by which you need the digital images, make sure to let us know, otherwise we will set the slides aside and scan them as we have time.
  • Starting with the Asia section, the VRC will go through the slide drawers one at a time and pull the slides it identifies according to the methods described above.  When we are finished with our review of a drawer we will label it with a red sticker.  You can pick slides from any drawer at any time, before or after we have addressed it in our culling process.
  • Note that slides with dark blue sharpie marks on the right side of the tops of the slide mounts have already been scanned by the VRC.  Because we may also wish to keep these slides, do not take or dispose of them when you encounter them.
  • Scanning from a book yields higher quality images than scanning copy slides that were photographed from that original book.  If you find copy slides in the collection that you would like to have digital images of, the bottom of the slide label typically provides some citation information.  You can bring us the book and request that the images be scanned directly from the book.

The VRC will not be scanning:

  • Images readily available in high quality through sources such as ARTstor.
  • Slides that were originally sold to us by vendors or museums.  We are prohibited by contractual agreements from scanning these slides.  Many of them are available from the same vendors to purchase in digital format today.
  • Copy slides from books housed in the University Libraries – to achieve a higher quality image we will scan from the original book.
  • Slides that we have already scanned (indicated by dark blue sharpie marks on the right side of the tops of the slide mounts).

Future Use of VRC Space
The VRC plans to use the space that will eventually be available in room 310 for workshops, training, and collaborative workspace for faculty and students.  We will still provide digital imaging stations in this space for use by faculty and students.