Announcing Our Studio Interns

METRO is pleased to announce the recipients of its Studio Internship Program. The goals of the METRO Studio Internship Program are to support innovative work for graduate students, recent graduates, and individuals in career transition entering the cultural heritage profession, and to utilize the METRO Studio to expand access to collections and broaden engagement with cultural heritage materials and data.

METRO is glad to be able to support these projects and we look forward to sharing more from them as they progress. The recipients are:

  • Brooklyn Historical Society
  • Syreeta Gates
  • Yvette Ramirez

Read on for details about each of our three recipients and the projects they will be doing.

BROOKLYN HISTORICAL SOCIETY

Founded in 1863, Brooklyn Historical Society is a nationally recognized urban history center dedicated to preserving and encouraging the study of Brooklyn’s extraordinary 400-year history. The Library & Archives department collects, preserves, and makes accessible one of the most comprehensive collection of materials related to Brooklyn’s history and culture.

Project:

This project builds on a 2013 collections survey report created by METRO and AVPreserve as part of the Keeping Collections initiative, as well as an inventory of moving image materials in Brooklyn Historical Society’s holding, conducted by staff in 2016. The Keeping Collections survey identified obsolescence, storage conditions, and a lack of intellectual control as risks to the moving image collections at BHS. We have improved storage conditions, but obsolescence and a lack of intellectual control remain risk factors for our audiovisual collection. This project aims to create sustainable and iterative workflows for mitigating these risks moving forward.

The METRO Studio will be used to digitize smaller quantities of audiovisual materials scattered across collections and unaccessioned materials. This project will establish BHS workflows for continued use of the METRO AV transfer station to address small-scale digitization of audiovisual materials during processing. The final deliverable will be a document outlining the process of integrating the METRO AV transfer station into routine processing, focused on small institutions. The document will include processes for identification and description of audiovisual materials, prioritization for transfer, logistics for transfer at METRO, and integration with existing digital preservation and reference workflows. This document will include project management information, time estimates, and outcomes to help other institutions plan and execute small-scale projects and workflows.

SYREETA GATES

Syreeta Gates is a hip-hop archivist and art collector, and founder of The Gates Preserve, a multimedia experience company that preserves and archives hip-hop in such a way that lasts forever. She curates innovative experiences like Shaping The Culture, a documentary film featuring the never before told story about the writers and journalists that created and shaped the language for hip-hop culture.

Project:

As an avid Googler, I was shocked to learn that the majority of the work of the journalists I featured in Shaping The Culture could not be found online. This void of influential hip-hop writing online directly informs my interest to create a platform that will allow both enthusiasts and those new to this area of the culture to easily access articles and other forms of writing from from hip-hop magazines such as The Source, VIBE and, XXL. I plan to use the METRO Studio to digitize selected content, record interviews with influential hip-hop journalists, and host a panel of writers to talk about the importance of a hip-hop journalism archive.

YVETTE RAMIREZ

Yvette Ramírez is a Queens-based arts administrator, oral-historian, and archivist-in-training. She is inspired by the power of community-centered archives to further explore the complexities of “home,” memory and diaspora — in particular the Andean experience. She has worked as an educator at The Noguchi Museum and has organized via community-based organizations such as Make The Road NY and New Immigrant Community Empowerment. Until recently, she was the Program Coordinator at The Laundromat Project.

Project:

The Bolivian Diaspora Archive Project builds off the inter-generational knowledge of the Bolivian-American experience via a living, post-custodial archive that is activated by ephemeral artifacts, oral histories, and public programming. Given it’s spatial and local history in relation to a vibrant Bolivian diasporic community, this project will commence in Queens, New York. The aim of this living, digital archive is to be built collectively by way of on-going storytelling and creative initiatives to not only document but to activate conversations around our shared cultural markers, practices and intersecting identities as diasporic Bolivians living in New York City. This initial phase, with the support of METRO, will encompass the sourcing and digitization of archival material such as family photographs, community newspapers, and audio and video cassette tapes, as well as hosting programming such as workshops and meetings with the community advisory committee.