The NN Contemporary Art Branch of Library Stack is a public collection of digital publications and digital media projects from across the contemporary art and design spheres. This freely accessible digital platform will support artistic research whilst augmenting NN Contemporary Art’s curatorial research and public programming agendas. The Branch also inaugurates a new joint publishing program to produce lendable digital projects within this extended library space, testing new modes of institutional collaboration, conservation, distribution and circulation.
The Branch library provides free access to media files (including multi-format ePubs, video and audio media) for either direct download or individual borrowing. Featured publications can be accessed by Branch users from anywhere in the world and include digital artworks, artists’ publications, podcasts, archival ephemera and objects from established alternative publishers such as Link Editions, Hatje Cantz, Onestar Press, Sternberg Press, L’Internationale Online and Open Humanities Press.
Library Stack circulates a vast array of digital arts and design ephemera by plugging into the heritage database infrastructure of the global library system, thus operating outside the scope of commercial internet platforms. In dialogue with NN Contemporary Art’s research, exhibition and publication aims, this joint experimental public Branch library will contribute to
a longer-term exploration of the digital infrastructure for loaning and borrowing digital objects, revising post-pandemic definitions of ‘the local’ and ‘translocal’ and mapping alternative publishing models for the arts and culture sectors. This inquiry positions the Branch library as a field of experimentation in community-driven accessioning models for institutions through digital tools.
The launch of the Branch and the digital commissioning programme were made possible by the Arts Council England.