The Getty Conservation Institute, the Museo del Novecento, and the Modern Materials and Contemporary Art working group of ICOM-CC, in partnership with INCCA, announce this conference on the preservation of kinetic art to be held in Milan, June 30–July 1, 2016, immediately prior to the 2016 ICOM General Conference.
Kinetic art not only includes movement, but often depends on it to be fully realized. Kinetic works of art exhibit a wide variety of motion, from motorized and electrically driven movement to motion resulting from wind, light, or other sources of energy. The dichotomy often noted in conservation of contemporary art, between original materials and the functionality of the work of art, is especially acute with kinetic art, where a compromise between the two seems impossible: when engine parts stop working or light bulbs go out, the work will stop functioning unless replacement is performed. What options are available, and how will they impact the object and our understanding of it? Issues of technological obsolescence—and of the strong sociological and historical meanings embedded in a given technology and its use by an artist—further complicate matters.
This two-day conference will examine the history of kinetic art and its preservation and explore the ethical and practical challenges of conserving and documenting kinetic works. For more information, contact Rachel Rivenc or Lydia Beerkens. INCCA is hosted by the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands.