A Script for an Archive: Women, by Holly Davey, is a multi-component digital artwork that I commissioned on the website curatinglivingarchives.network. This curatorial project was one of the outcomes of the Royal Society of Edinburgh-funded research project 'What is a living archive? Curating the Unruly Archives of Contemporary Art’ that I led between January 2021 and January 2022 with the team including Adam Lockart and Miriam Mallalieu from DJCAD, and freelance artist/web designer Naomi van Dijck. The commission's outcomes - a scripted performance for screen and related digital collages - were developed by the artist through her engagement with women artists works in the REWIND Video Archive at DJCAD, facilitated by Adam Lockhart and I. The performance addresses issues around gender representation in archival spaces and connects the experience of women artists past and present to question ‘How would you like the future to be?’. The only time audiences could see the performance live online was at the launch event [on Zoom] on 31 January 2022, alongside an artist talk. The recording of the performance [31:43 mins], alongside the script and the series of digital collages have been accessioned into DJCAD’s time-based art collection in Spring 2022 and remain accessible on the project’s website. The curatorial project exposed the artist's practice and directly led to the artist being commissioned to work with The Fruitmarket Gallery's archive in 2023.
This is the script performed and recorded live on Zoom as part of the artwork’s launch on 31st January 2021.
It is a live reading of the script by two actors. The work is the personification of Archive and Process as two women, having a conversation about women in archival spaces, why we are missing and what could an archive of the future be? The work was made over Zoom to a live audience in one take and incorporates the limitations of the technology and making work via the internet.