Title:Conceptualizing a Digital Media Museum
Authors:Lin Hsin Hsin
Publication:MW98: Museums and the Web 1998

Is the pervasive display of digital icons and graphical images in the cyberspace is where the reality of an art museum stops and digital art and digital media begins? Will an exclusive digital media museum segregates existing art aficionados from the techno-art aficionados despite all diversity and backgrounds? How will the current generation of digital art progresses into digital-antiques? If so, will current auction houses accept this art form or will it naturally evolve into the making of the digital-auction-houses-of-the-future? These are the immediate concerns of the author who straddles between fine arts and technology. While preservation and conservation will no longer be an important issue for digital media, there are other difficulties and new issues arise from cradling this new medium. This paper examines the necessity of building a real world media museum exclusively to collect and exhibit digital artworks. It defines and categorizes digital medium, surveys and asserts fundamentals, highlights the issues involved in building such a museum from its conceptualization, design to implementation as it questions the architectural prerequisites, uniqueness and functional infrastructure. By an unprecedented categorization of the digital medium, it discusses the qualification of the curatorial jurisdiction, art critic and the quantification of the acquisition and valuation of the digital artworks. From previews to reviews, from the exhibits layout to the can't-do-without hardcopy art catalog, this paper discusses the nature and matters of staging a digital media museum, its Web presence and its relation to digital art events. It delineates between binary space and real world space as it encapsulates the digital medium in a real world museum.