Using Wikibase to build The Digital Archive of Artists’ Books (DAAP)
10-31, 12:20–12:30 (UTC), Room 1

The Digital Archive of Artists’ Publishing (DAAP) is an interactive, user-driven, searchable database of artists’ books and publications, that acts as a hub to engage with others, built by artists, publishers and a community of creative practitioners in contemporary artists’ publishing. It is developed via an ethically-driven design process, with support by Wikimedia UK and Arts Council England.

In this talk, we will highlight how we have drawn upon the working knowledge of users and archivists alike, to develop a database with sufficient complexity, that affords multiple histories to develop, confronting issues of authorship and representation, whilst addressing the challenges of cataloguing often deliberately difficult to categorise materials. DAAP is committed to challenging the politics of traditional archives regarding inclusion and accessibility, from a post-colonial, critical gender and LGBTQI perspective. With an emphasis on inclusivity from the start, we aim to privilege anecdotal histories and multiple perspectives alongside factual data, whilst the wiki style approach means that users can upload and describe their own materials, choose how to describe themselves in relation to these materials, and select appropriate sharing permissions at time of upload.

Utilising Wikibase, DAAP brings to the surface new and unexpected data connections across diverse collection artefacts, providing a resource to link to other archives, and communities. In the talk, we will also show how the DAAP implements a custom frontend interface on top of the Wikibase database, which follows familiar user interface metaphors, increasing accessibility across a broader audience.

Link to notes

What will the participants take away from this session?

Participants will learn more about the Digital Archive of Artists’ Publishing, and how we have used Wikibase to produce a fluid archive, capable of challenging the traditional exclusions of the archive and bringing to the surface new and unexpected data connections across diverse collections.





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Frances is an archivist with the Digital Archive of Artists' Publishing (DAAP).