National Archive of Computer Based Art and Design | i |
name: National Archive of Computer Based Art and Design

The Victoria and Albert Museum, London, (V&A) has been collecting pieces of computer-generated art and design since the 1960s (?). In the late 2000s, the Museum acquired two significant collections: One is the Patric Prince collection, the other one the collection of the Computer Arts Society (CAS). They also possess the archive of Ernest Edmonds and various gifts of computer-generated art, that came from individual artists. All those works together form the basis of the UK’s emerging national collection of Computer Art.

Arguably, the V&A collection is the most representative collection of digital art in the world.

The Museum’s holdings range from early experiments with analogue computers and mechanical devices to examples of contemporary software-based practices that produce digital prints and computer-generated drawings. The earliest work in the collection dates from 1952 and is a long exposure photograph of electronic beams on an analogue computer, by artist Ben Laposky.

More recently, the V&A has acquired a large digital inkjet print from 2008, which is nearly two metres long and was created using pixel mapping software designed by American artist Mark Wilson.
The collection consists predominantly of two-dimensional works on paper, such as plotter drawings, screenprints, inkjet prints, laser prints and photographs, as well as artists’ books, from around the world. Early practitioners of computer art were working in Britain, France, Germany, and Spain, as well as the United States, Japan and South America. [V&A Computer Art, n. d.]

More about the collection is available on the website of the Victoria and Albert Museum and in their Online Journal Issue No 2 from Autumn 2009. All works from the Computer Art collections can be accessed through the ‘Prints and Drawings Study Room’ at the V&A.

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