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I am 21AM, a museum alive in three spaces: in cyberspace; in all spaces (hence in no center); and within the Accession Record System (ARS) of the collection of the Cultural Center of the Philippines. I live digitally, therefore, and am not set or inserted to one place, building, or city—notwithstanding 21AM as a facilty of the Center. I was established to follow the Filipino public, who are leading immersives in online media in the world. This museum has its pulse on artworks flying with developments in digital technology, critical of its evolving character, and prepared for violent contests in cyberspace—while persisting with retrospective thought about the work of previous generations, facilitated by ARS.
I am the 21AM website and the website is me.
THE 21AM ACCESSION RECORD SYSTEM (21AM ARS) is in large measure founded on the work of consolidating the CCP’s physically separate and separately-documented collections of artworks and art-associated articles, into a single record. The 21AM ARS embodies and offers a singularly important experience offered by 21AM: the structure that incorporates the collections into conversations creating Contemporary Art.
At the time of 21AM’s inception, the totality of the collection consists of modern and contemporary art collected since before 1969; ethnomusicological instruments from various parts of Asia and the Philippines; artworks, scenographic articles from performative traditions, and other ethnographic articles in CCP’s Museo ng Kalinangang Pilipino (MKP); art-associated articles, some of which have uncertain artistic or cultural value, stored in various CCP premises.
The Articles in the collection are only either Artwork or Art-associated Article. These articles range between items possessed of enormous financial value to items of little financial value but hold cultural significance. They also widely range in size, between large sculptures installed permanently in locations in the CCP Complex, a 70+ hectare cultural precinct, and tiny pieces of marked fragility in the storage spaces of the CCP main building, the Center for the Performing Arts.
The various collections come together henceforth in a single database.
For each exhibition that takes place, the curator has an introductory note and the creators of the work have a statement. These notes open up each exhibit, therefore; all in the form of a digital thought and made.
Because based on the invitation of 21AM is the opportunity to exhibit a work that discusses aspects or the whole universe of digital life as a reality, I will also introduce it as a museum with a framework of choice. The exhibit may be hosted by the 21AM site or hosted by another site linked to 21AM.
I will also be adding written reviews and other audience responses to the exhibits as they unfold.
Further information and knowledge is on offer about the Cultural Center of the Philippines Collection; the current exhibits; retrospective views on previous exhibits; additional information related to the myriad events in the Chat Room; and about the tagged links between current artworks and articles in the CCP Collection.
I post here the formal programs and other forms of discussion augmenting the current exhibitions. I also include selected notices about relevant events in other institutions and by other groups.
Chatroom is open 24/7: 21AM thrives on continuing and occasional discussions, thought exchanges, debate, deep dives, news sharing, advice, position-setting, and so forth. In this room, at any given time may be many visitors, or none except a provocative artwork, or a scheduled discussion. Chatterbox is a democratic space, open to people respectful of similar or contrary opinion. It is typically an informal setting, especially because participation cannot be predicted. However, I am also posting schedules of conferences, seminars, workshops, and other formal discussions.
I am deeply interested as a digital institution in the issue of human rights in the digital world. And I believe even more strongly that these rights need to be upheld and defended at a time when people's data is being harvested without our permission, and we lack protection from deception and crushing trust in any knowledge.
Because of this, I will post notes on this complex matter, discussion notices, and selected news items. I will participate in discussions on the part of those who are unprotected and unprepared for the changing nature of human life.
The Archive is home to the remains of the exhibits. The deaths, as it were, or endings of exhibits are expected as typical, however leaving traceries—except for the possibilities in the future of works which have no end.
Included in these traceries that will assist in understanding the exhibits retrospectively are: planning documents, texts including reviews and other forms of engagement of the public, records (audio, video, photo), and discussions in the Chat Room. I am also storing here the records of my institutional life.
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