A Conversation on 'Permanence'

Published on 2018-05-15

The Current is pleased to announce our second salon discussion on the topic of 'Permanence' on May 23rd at 8PM EST. 'The Current // Permanence' is curated and moderated by Ben Fino-Radin, a time-based media conservator and founder of Small Data Industries.

A tour of the works in the salon begins streaming at 8PM EST on facebook 360° live, followed by a panel conversation moderated by Ben Fino-Radin with Jill Sterrett, Director of Collections at SFMoMA and Michelle Lee, Head of Product at Protocol Labs.

Featured Artists:  Shigeko Kubota, Rafäel Rozendaal, JODI, Olia Lialina, Morehshin Allahyari, Takeshi Murata, and Steina Vasulka

WHAT: Salon-style exhibition and conversation on the topic of 'Permanence' and the second convening of The Current's cooperative collection Ccmmittee.

WHEN: Wednesday, May 23rd in SoHo for members of the collection committee and our guests, discussion live on facebook at 8PM EST

HOW TO JOIN: Anyone can sign-up for our cooperative collection committee by registering on drip. The cost to participate is $250/salon and members have access to the collection they help support.

PARTICIPATE ONLINE: Streaming Live on Facebook Live 360 °

   Introduction from Ben Fino-Radin:
Throughout centuries, artists have engaged with the impulse to memorialize, to be remembered, and the impulse to collect, archive, and preserve. If one looks closely enough, one sees however that permanence is really just change in slow motion. Nothing is permanent. Nothing lasts forever. 

What may art teach us about long term thinking, and the seemingly futile pursuit of permanence? Is the immaterial — that which is transmitted through time by means of tradition and collective intellectual stewardship — more enduring than the physical artifact?


Jill Sterrett has worked at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art since 1990 as Paper Conservator (1990-2000), Head of Conservation (2000-2002) and Director of Collections (2002-present). In her current role, she oversees the activities of six allied departments in a museum structure designed to put voices of living artists at the center of a collaborative approach to contemporary art stewardship and research. 

She has worked at the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, the Library of Congress, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the National Library of Australia, and the National Gallery of Victoria. Jill is a graduate of Denison University with a B.A. in Chemistry and a B.A. in Art History. She earned her M.A. in Art Conservation from the Cooperstown Graduate Program. She has published and taught on the subject of museums, conservation and contemporary art, including as a Fulbright Scholar in Portugal. She has been the Board President of Voices of Contemporary Art since 2014.

Michelle Lee is a software maker and startup founder. Currently, she leads Product at Protocol Labs, building new internet protocols such as IFPS and Filecoin which offer historic versioning and highly efficient storage to make the web faster, safer, and more resilient and permanent. 

Michelle's experience spans over a decade in govtech startups, established vendors, and technology giants including Code for America, Textizen, GovDelivery, and Google. Her work was recognized as a 2012 winner of the Knight News Challenge: Mobile and she invented Google Forms. Born in Taiwan and raised in New Jersey, she studied Human-Computer Interaction at Stanford University.

Ben Fino-Radin is a conservator and entrepreneur specializing in the preservation of digital contemporary art and culture. He is founder of Small Data Industries, a conservation studio and consultancy providing services and support for the collection, exhibition, preservation, and storage of time-based media art.

Preview the artworks in Salon #2 – The Current // Permanence

   Join via Facebook 360° live with guest moderator Faith Holland facilitating questions and discussion with the salon.

Join our cooperative collection committee to participate in The Current Museum’s second salon, an evening of conversation on the topic of permanence, and loss. Members vote on which works from the salon should become a part of the collection, and have special access to the works they support.

----> Join our cooperative collection committee for $250/Salon  <----