ACMI Conversations ACMI Presents

Preserving the Artefacts of the Future

Scroll to content

How does a museum collect WeChat? Or show a laptop that was destroyed by security agencies because it held government secrets leaked by whistleblowers?

How could a museum collect computer viruses, or use source code to reveal decisions made by designers when a product was being made?

Digital design, game design and media design are all important aspects of contemporary design, yet institutions have struggled to effectively exhibit and collect, let alone 'preserve' them for future generations.

Seb and Natalie will discuss current institutional approaches, including the V&A's rapid response collecting initiatives and ACMI's digital preservation.

About the speakers

Seb Chan is ACMI’s Chief Experience Officer. Prior to this he led the digital renewal and transformation of the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum in New York (2011-2015) and led experiments in the acquisition of digital design including the ‘app’ to enter the Smithsonian’s permanent collection. He drove the Powerhouse Museum's pioneering work in open access, mass collaboration and digital experience during the 2000s. He has also worked as a museum consultant with institutions across North America, Europe and Asia. His work has won awards from American Alliance of Museums, One Club, D&AD, Fast Company and Core77. He is an Adjunct Professor, School of Media and Communications, in College of Design and Social Context at RMIT. He also leads a parallel life in digital art and electronic music.

Natalie D Kane is Curator of Digital Design at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Together with Tobias Revell she is a founder of Haunted Machines, a curatorial research project that explores the use of magical analogy in our understanding of technology. Haunted Machines were curators of the 2017 Impakt Festival in Utrecht (NL), and were commissioned by Serpentine Galleries for their 2016 and 2017 Marathons. Previously, Natalie was Curator at FutureEverything in Manchester (UK), a festival and innovation lab for digital culture, and produced exhibitions and programmes at digital arts organisation Lighthone in Brighton (UK). She is a Visiting Lecturer at the Institute of European Design in Barcelona.