CACHe - recovering computer arts history

CACHe is a major research project into the origins and history of British computer arts.

We are based at the School of History of Art, Film and Visual Media at Birkbeck, University of London and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Board. The substantial government funding for our project indicates the level of interest in creating an historical framework for this period. CACHe began its work in 2002.

CACHe is investigating the early days of the computer arts in the UK from their origins in the 1960s to the 1980s, when the first personal computers began to be used. The project intends to archive, document and contextualise the computer arts. Its principal goals are to recover this history and confirm its cultural and aesthetic legitimacy.

CACHe aims to:

* Recover the work of leading pioneers in the field of digital-based art in Britain
* Identify artists, works, events and publications
* Document the contributions of artists, researchers, authors, academics, institutions and publications
* Collect material to create a permanent national collection based on a number of archives, including that of the late John Lansdown, co-founder of the Computer Arts Society and a pivotal figure in this field during the 1960s-1980s
* Construct a critical and historical context for the computer arts
* Enable access to this research through an online database, books, videos/DVDs and other materials

CACHe's work includes tracing and contacting people associated with the field during this period, or their families. In all cases, we are trying to build up a comprehensive picture of the digital arts in the 1960s and 1970s in the UK and cross-reference them to international developments.

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