Social | September 20 #ArtistHotline Guest Chat: Archiving & Protecting Your Work

Social | September 20 #ArtistHotline Guest Chat: Archiving & Protecting Your Work

When it comes to your work, it’s never too early to get organized.

On September 20, 2017, the monthly Artist Professional Development Day #ArtistHotline returns to Twitter from 9:30 AM – 5:30 PM EST. As part of September’s all-day virtual forum on Twitter, we’ll host a Guest Chat segment on “Archiving & Protecting Your Work.″ From 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM EST, we’ll hear from Guest Tweeters Ashley Blewer, an audiovisual archivist, Dr. Eric Colleary, Cline Curator of Theatre & Performing Arts at the Harry Ransom Center, and Margaret Holben Ellis, President of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (AIC). 

As September is National Preparedness Month, now is an especially good time to evaluate whether your work is well-protected. At first glance, preparing for the unforeseen and unexpected can seem nerve-wracking and gloomy. But having well-documented materials at the ready, as part of a well-organized archive, can also help you take advantage of those unexpected and beneficial opportunities that come your way. 

Here are a few questions our three panelists may tackle from artists of all disciplines:

  • How can I balance my everyday demands with the need to plan ahead?
  • What are some organizations or resources that can help me begin archiving my work?
  • How can I document my work online to ensure the work is only attributed to me?
  • How can I best document and archive time-based, digital, and performance art?

Join the Conversation

Have some archiving questions of your own? Join the conversation from 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM EST using the hashtag #ArtistHotline on Twitter. And from 9:30 AM – 5:30 PM EST, NYFA staff, partnering organizations, and individual artists will discuss a wide variety of arts career topics, from grant applications to digital marketing.

Guest Chat Bios


Ashley Blewer is an audiovisual archivist, technologist, and enthusiast. She cares about education (especially in tech), access (especially when it comes to moving images), the act of creation (especially on the web), and good archival practice (especially with digital formats). She is an active contributor to MediaConch, an open source digital video file conformance checker software project, and QCTools, an open source digitized video analysis software project.

Find Blewer tweeting @ablwr.


Dr. Eric Colleary is the Cline Curator of Theatre & Performing Arts at the Harry Ransom Center, where he oversees the archives of such figures as Tennessee Williams, Lillian Hellman, Stella Adler, Tom Stoppard, and Peter O’Toole. He is co-chair of the American Theatre Archive Project, a resource network of archivists, dramaturgs, scholars, and artists dedicated to preserving the legacy of the American theatre. He also serves as the co-chair for the Communications Committee of the Theatre Library Association and is a member of the Dance Heritage Coalition. He has written extensively on approaches to archiving art and history, particularly within the LGBT community. He holds a PhD in Theatre Historiography from the University of Minnesota, and serves as a lecturer in the Performance as Public Practice Program in the University of Texas at Austin’s Department of Theatre & Dance.

Find Colleary tweeting @ecolleary.


Margaret Holben Ellis is the Eugene Thaw Professor of Paper Conservation at the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, where she teaches the conservation treatment of prints and drawings, as well as technical connoisseurship for art historians. She most recently served as the Director of the Thaw Conservation Center at the Morgan Library & Museum. She is a Fellow and current President of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (AIC), a Fellow and past Council member of the International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (IIC), and a certified Conservator/Restorer of the Institute of Conservation (ICON). Awards include the AIC Rutherford John Gettens Merit Award, 1997, the AIC Sheldon and Caroline Keck Award, 2003, and, from the American Academy in Rome, the first Rome Prize (1994) to be awarded to a conservator. In the Fall of 2015 she was a Getty Conservation Institute Scholar in Residence. 

Ellis has published and lectured on artists ranging from Raphael and Titian to Pollock, Samaras, Lichtenstein, and Dubuffet. Her research on artists’ materials and techniques is similarly wide-ranging and encompasses Day-Glo colors, Magic Markers, and Crayola crayons. She served as Editor for Philosophical and Historical Issues in the Conservation of Works of Art on Paper (Getty Conservation Institute, 2014). Her second edition of The Care of Prints and Drawings was published this year by Rowman & Littlefield.

Find Ellis tweeting @conservators.

Inspired by the NYFA Source Hotline, #ArtistHotline is an initiative dedicated to creating an ongoing online conversation around the professional side of artistic practice. #ArtistHotline occurs on the third Wednesday of each month on Twitter. Our goal is to help artists discover the resources needed, online and off, to develop sustainable careers.

This initiative is supported by the Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation.

Image, from top: Jessica Segall (Fellow in Crafts/Sculpture ‘14); courtesy Ashley Blewer; courtesy Dr. Eric Colleary, photo by BD Portraits Studio; courtesy Margaret Holben Ellis

Amy Aronoff
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