Amal Ahmed, Booklyn Inc., Spring 2020, RDLGF
I had the opportunity to work at Booklyn in Sunset Park for the Spring 2020 Internship Program. Booklyn is a non-profit organisation that specialises in collecting, distributing and exhibiting zine, book and print material. Booklyn engages with artists in local communities and addresses issues about alternative social movements and social justice movements. I worked on the Culture Wars Media Archive curated and collected since the 1970s to the early 2000s by Marshal Weber. The media collection has been largely untouched and on the sidelines since its main mission is working with artists collectives print, book and zine collections.
The media collection includes titles that address issues as important as Booklyn's paper collection. The Media Collection is curated by Marshall Weber, who started the Artists Television Access in the early 1980s. I gained knowledge, through Marshall, of various organisations that prioritise diversity and promote the democratization of art production and access. The Media archive at Booklyn holds numerous copies of the broadcasts from Artists Television Access and are valuable resources in the history of San Francisco's art scene and culture.
I physically inspected most of the collection. I separated the formats into new banker boxes that Booklyn ordered for me. I isolated VHS tapes that I noticed had mold on them. The only items I didn’t do a physical inspection for mold or sticky shed were the U-matic tapes. I created an inventory of 82 items from the collection. I assigned new Unique ID numbers for the collection because the previous ones didn't make sense and not appointed to every item. Since most of the physical work could not be completed due to COVID-19, I wrote a collection assessment for the Culture Wars Media Archive and assessed the history of the collection, important and valuable research items, and offered various preservation plans for Booklyn.