The maintenance and conservation of contemporary visual art is a new challenge for museums and art conservators. More and more artists have taken leave of the painter’s brushes and are moving on to new media, such as video. Or they are making installations of transient materials like polystyrene, wax and scotch tape. Can these works be saved for the art lovers of the future?
How to preserve and reinstall the work Notion Motion by Olafur Eliasson: 1.500 m2 of water, light and movement? What about works that are based on outdated technology? A large group of experts worked on the restoration of Exhange Fields, an interactive video-installation by Bill Seaman. Despite the fact that the work is only ten years old, it had to be completely restored and digitalized. And the artist Tino Sehgal doesn’t allow any form of documentation of his works. Tate London acquired his performance This Is Propaganda in 2005. Will Tate be able to keep on showing this work to the public?
This film offers a glimpse behind the scenes of the European museum. It investigates three cases that shed an interesting light on the practices and issues that the conservator of modern and contemporary art deals with.
Interviews | Tracy Metz
Photography | Mick van Dantzig, Roel van ‘t Hoff
Sound | Leo Franssen, Charles Kersten, Willem de Wijs
Editor | Bart van den Broek
Music | The Defilers
Under commission | SBMK