Share in our discoveries across three projects as we work to provide the first intellectual access to our hidden treasures relating to work and labor in early 20th Century New England, the 1939-1940 New York World's Fair and its period, and Boston local TV news.

Friday, April 1, 2011

George Eastman House, NHF, Queens Museum of Art Convene

Students from the L. Jeffrey Selznick School of Film Preservation, George Eastman House, joined project staff and consultants in a PBCore cataloging training March 28-30 in Rochester, NY, describing film reels from George Eastman House and Queens Museum of Art.

Photo by Barbara Puorro Galasso, George Eastman House.
We put it in gear Monday morning as Louise Weinberg, Queens Museum of Art Curator, depicted the physically ephemeral yet provocatively persistent New York World's Fair, 1939-1940. Her newest exhibition at QMA opens on April 10, Future Perfect: Re-Constructing the 1939 New York World's Fair, inspired by blueprints signed by President of the NWYF Corporation, Grover Whalen. The Fair was built in Queens, NY, on territory that was once a wetland, then an apocalyptic ash dump before the Fair was be dismantled when the visitors left. "There are many, many things that were introduced at the Fair. World's Fairs are a way to bring together new ideas, new technologies and introduce them."

Louise is second from the right, next to Jack Brighton. Jack introduced the students to the PBCore metadata standard, beginning with an intro to Dublin Core, the standard on which PBCore was built. Fundamental PBCore concepts are the ASSET, which is the media item's "Platonic form," and its INSTANTIATIONS, which are the physical or digital instances of the asset. PBCore 2.0 has just been released and offers many improvements based on user-community input. See and

Brian Graney, Media Cataloger, demonstrated the cataloging system CollectiveAccess, explaining the database structure: Entity records (access points for names of creators, donors, people appearing, and other contributors), Intellectual Content (PBCore asset records) and Instantiation records. We discussed Subject and Genre/Form terms and the construction of Titles for amateur films. Students are the initial users of our newly created cataloging manual for cataloging in CollectiveAccess with DACS and PBCore.

The Selznick School class, having spent the academic year learning and practicing film preservation theory and practice, moved to Web-based cataloging of Queens Museum of Art and GEH film reels on Tuesday, describing intellectual content and physical condition, harmonizing the GEH film inspection sheet information with CollectiveAccess database fields. Working in teams of two at computer terminals they consulted reference books and online authorities, engaging in discussion with Louise, Jack, Brian and Karan.

Clara Sanchez-Dehesa, Masha Sharafutdinova, Sung-Eun Shin, Zuzana Zabkova, Nikki Shayer, Marissa Haddock in teams creating entity, intellectual content and instantiation records using the online system. More work stations are in use across the room.

In the next post we will look at some images captured during film handling: students reviewed QMA and GEH film reels, captured individual frames of interest, and when condition allowed made video access copies.

Jeff Stoiber, Selznick School Administrator, Jared Case, Senior Cataloger, and Anthony L'Abbate, Preservation Officer (super NYWF buff) participated throughout the three-day workshop and provided extraordinary hospitality.