Duke’s Digital Art History & Visual Culture Research Lab, located in the Wired! Lab, is a dynamic research community of faculty, staff, and students. We engage and advance critical digital methods to promote new approaches to scholarship and pedagogy in the study and interpretation of the visual arts, architecture, cultural heritage, and urban environments.
The Digital Art History & Visual Culture Research Lab began as the Wired! Lab, and Wired! began as a question: what will happen if we apply digital technologies to historical inquiry? What kinds of affordances and limitations do state-of-the-art technologies offer art historians to represent and interrogate the three-dimensional forms of architecture and sculpture as they change over time? And, as time has gone by, and as the potential and affordances of digital technologies have expanded over the past ten years, what new initiatives and research questions could the faculty and students at Duke University undertake? These themes have dominated the Wired! enterprise ever since.
In Spring 2009, these questions were first explored in an investigational course, New Representational Technologies for Historical Materials, out of which the Wired! Lab was born. Basic to the initiative were certain core concepts: team teaching (combining the expertise of those in Digital Media with Art and Architectural History), group projects (that engaged faculty working alongside students), public presentations, and peer-to-peer teamwork. These operational principles entailed the reconceptualization of courses in order to make time for teaching the appropriate technologies and developing research projects, as well as the support of the administration for the creation of a designated space with appropriate hardware and software. Over the second half of its first ten years, Wired! has both built on its longstanding strengths and expanded its engagements with data, issues of scale, and public-facing scholarship. Read Celebrating 10+ Years of Wired! to learn more.
Smith Warehouse, Bay 11, Room A233