The H-Net Network on Material Culture and Vernacular Landscapes and Artifact Preservation will promote and support the study of objects, buildings, sites, structures, landscapes and other material cultural productions as part of the visual record of life.
We welcome announcements, CFP's, queries, contributions, and discussions of all things material! To add yours, click the orange "Start a Discussion" button above this text.
We also welcome totally new projects. If you have an idea for a new on-going feature or a one time resource for the field, let us know. We are barely scratching the surface of what this website can do and we have a great staff of tech-minded folks at H-Net. If you've got a grand idea, we have people who can help make it happen. Podcasts? Video tours? Image galleries? Digitization projects? We can do those, and more! There are a few thoughts here, but the internet's the limit. Let us know what you're thinking.
And we tweet, too! https://twitter.com/H_Mat_Culture
You can see Recent Queries and Recent Discussions below, and Recent Announcements at the bottom of the page below the scrolling "Occasional Objects" images. All CFP's posted to the site can be found in the links on the right, as can Jobs in Material Culture Studies.
Hi Mark - what an interesting project! Here are a few suggestions:
1) Yasser Elsheshtawy has a chapter in "The Evolving Arab City" about how Abu Dhabi, UAE has had similar struggles with public art. Citation here: Elsheshtawy, Y. (2008). “Cities of Sand & Fog: The Emergence of Abu Dhabi as a Global City.” In Y. Elsheshtawy (ed.). The Evolving Arab City: Tradition, modernity & urban development. London: Routledge.
I am currently working with community partners in Newark to develop an exhibition and public programming on Kea Tawana's Ark, a three-story boat-like structure built and dismantled in Newark in the 1980s. You can see some great photos of the Ark here: http://www.spacesarchives.org/explore/collection/environment/keas-ark/
The podcasts from my neck of the woods of which I'm aware, are of talks from seminars and conferences versus being episodic, if you're also seeking those. Podcasts are usually put up of the talks at the "Things" seminar series on material culture, which has been running at CRASSH Cambridge since 2011: http://sms.cam.ac.uk/collection/1183756?mediaOffset=40&mediaMax=20#Media Many of the talks at my own material culture conference, "Objects in Motion: Material Culture in Transition", have also been podcast: http://sms.cam.ac.uk/collection/2148925
I would recommend adding both "99% Invisible", which is an exploration of the built environment and design in general, and "The Memory Palace" which often uses material culture as a jumping off point for an exploration of an idea or historical event. I have used episodes of both of these to teach introductory historic preservation class to help students understand not only the interpretation of material culture, but also the concept of multiple layers of interpretation at any given site.
Indeed, that was my little April Fool's jape. Fear not materialists everywhere: material culture studies is alive and well.... or...as well as anything not STEM can be in the academy... hmmm...
Chuckle Culture! The new multi-disciplinary field! Love it!
Occasional Objects series
The scrolling images to left are from H-Material-Culture's "Occasional Objects" series--a periodic informal examination of objects sent in by our subscribers. View the full collection, read the essays, and add your contribution here in Occasional Objects.