Entries by NYU Center for the Humanities

Analysis Beyond Analytics: Exploring the Transformative Crossover Between Cinema & Media Studies and the Digital Humanities

Cinema Studies has always been attuned to technological developments and their impact on machine-made art. Even before the first cinematic experiments in interactive storytelling and database narratives in the 1990s (including USC’s The Labyrinth Project, led by Marsha Kinder, and UCLA experiments in cinema forensics, led by Stephen Mamber), the pre-digital work of visionary filmmakers such as Dziga Vertov, Sergei Eisenstein and Luis Buñuel prefigures the database logic that is exemplary of the ways in which digital culture now organizes and interacts with data (Manovich 2001; Kinder).

The Artist Archives Project – David Wojnarowicz

The Artist Archives Project develops information resources for the display and conservation of contemporary art. The initiative responds to a growing need for museum and archive professionals to work with artists in documenting their production methods, and building knowledge for future treatment and re-activation of their work.

Local Contexts 2.0: Implementing the Traditional Knowledge Labels

This project involves the development of a set of protocols, standards, tools, and resources relating to digital curation and stewardship of Indigenous cultural heritage that assists non-Native collecting institutions and local Native American communities to enhance access and management of knowledge about humanities collections.

Art & Politics in the City

Art & Politics in the City is a 3-semester, co-located, co-taught course led by Professor Alejandro Velasco in NY, and Florencia Malbran in Buenos Aires. Each semester, a (new) cohort of students investigates the correlation between street art and politics (electoral, cultural, economic, etc.) by using several pieces of technology to document, map, and analyze the graffiti in specific neighborhoods of NY and BA. Students are assigned a neighborhood and go out into the field to document the street art using a mobile data collection app called Fulcrum (fulcrumapp.com). The data from Fulcrum syncs to CartoDB, and from there students import public data to conduct their analyses, which includes spatial comparisons (NY to BA) and temporal comparisons across the several semesters. All of this work is showcased on a course site, using NYU Web Publishing. The course is now in its second semester, and students are in the process of generating their maps. I, Lillian Moran from GLI, and Andrew Battista from Data Services have been assisting with the technology this semester.

Interactive Pedagogy: Social Media Repurposing in Cinema Studies

This is a collaborative class project that analyzes the potential contributions of social networking tools to the documentation of personal moments in film history, and proposes an alternative, networked mode of film historiography. This experimental multimediated exploration aims to stimulate critical reflection on the complexities of documenting shared events and of conveying highly subjective cinematic experiences. The convergence of multiple means of capturing and remediating the ephemera of cinematic experiences provides new and innovative ideas on what it means to archive in the age of digital communications and social media.

Identifying 3D Roman Portraits in the Classroom

Portraits of Roman Emperors and of members of their families were among the most accessible images for all members of Roman society. They were reproduced by the millions on coins and were common as portrait busts and full-length sculptures in urban and private settings. Since the Renaissance, scholars have used the fact that Roman coins name the Emperor under whose authority they were produced as one aide in identifying otherwise unnamed marble and bronze sculptures. Sebastian Heath of NYU’s Institute for the Study of the Ancient World is enabling his students to follow that same process.