ARLIS/NA Artist Files Special Interest Group: Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Discussion Panel
From Meredith Hale
The Artist Files SIG held an online discussion forum on the topic of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in artist file collections on August 9, 2021. The one-hour session included a panel of three speakers. Jane Devine Mejia, representing the Vancouver Art Gallery Library and Archives, delivered a presentation titled “Equity, diversity & inclusion in Canadian artist files.” It addressed an internal review and revision and replacement of Library of Congress subject headings for Indigenous, Black, Asian Canadian, and other artists of colour in the Gallery’s artists’ files. Amy Furness and Adrienne Connelly, representing the Art Gallery of Ontario, Edward P. Taylor Library & Archives, discussed the AGO’s annual Artist File Fair. Held in collaboration with artist collective EMILIA-AMALIA, the fair invites BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of colour), women, queer, trans, and non-binary artists to contribute to the AGO’s artists’ files collection. Rebecca Friedman, representing Princeton University Library, spoke about Marquand Library of Art & Archaeology’s artist file collection, with some examples of projects involving greater exposure to a more diverse or under-represented set of materials, in particular. The presentations were followed by a Q&A session and broader group discussion.