What the Fonds?! The ups and downs of digitising Tate’s ArchivePaper
Emily Fildes, Science Museum Group, UK, Allison Foster, Tate Britain, UK
Published paper: What the Fonds?! The ups and downs of digitising Tate’s Archive
In October 2014, Tate launched online the culmination of a project to digitise a selection of objects from Tate’s Archive. Archives have been digitised before, but the unique ambition for the project was to integrate our archive collection into the same interface as our art collection in the "Art & artists" section of the Tate website.
In this paper, two representatives—one from the Archive team and one from the Digital team—present the ups, downs, findings, and pragmatic decisions required for a project of this scale. We cover how to develop a sustainable process for digitising archive material in a museum/gallery context, as well as how our approach and lessons learnt to integrating two collections on the website front end, including developing a usable search interface, presenting complex information as simply as possible, and the difficulties of using the term "Archive" online.