Trace: about


obn_a – A situated Archive of the Old Boys Network

The project is about the creation of an open-source and multi-lingual archive of the cyberfeminist alliance Old Boys Network. OBN was launched at documenta x as part of the Hybrid Workspace where it held the 1st Cyberfeminist International in September 1997. In the following years, the network held regular international conferences, published readers and books and served as a platform for a plethora of cyberfeminist activities.

The guiding principles for the archiving process are based on a concept OBN itself proposed: “The mode is the message. The code is the collective.” The goal is to create an infrastructure that allows for research on cyberfeminism, its spirit, its objectives and its expressions in theory, art and visual culture, but also in hands-on-technology practice, as well as to understand, more broadly, the spirit of early internet culture. In a time where digital networked technologies have pervaded everyday lives in unexpected density, the renewed interest in early feminist criticism of technology shows it relevance as an essential source of inspiration for the development of contemporary forms of power-critical approaches to technology.

obn_archive is a collaboration between Kunsthochschule Kassel/documenta studies and the documenta archiv.

Start of the project. Hamburg Lerchenfeld, October 2020

Members of the team are (from left):
Cornelia Sollfrank, artistic archivist
Carina Herring, Kunsthochschule Kassel/ HfbK - University of the Arts Hamburg Hamburg (project manager)
Nora Sternfeld, HfbK - University of the Arts Hamburg Hamburg (in advisory function)
Anja Steidinger, HfbK - University of the Arts Hamburg Hamburg (in advisory function)
Julia Stolba, archival assistant, HfbK - University of the Arts Hamburg Hamburg
Malin Kuht, archival assistant, Kunsthochschule/ Universität Kassel.

External collaborators:
Dušan Barok, artist and archivist
Laurence Rassel, cultural worker, director of ERG Brussels
Michael Hiltbrunner, ZHdK, Zürich
Mela Dávila-Freire, Hamburg
Networks of Care, project at ngbk Berlin 2021/22 (Anna Schäffler, Antje Weitzel, Nanne Buurman, Friederike Schäfer, Cornelia Sollfrank)