The incredible diversity and complexity of unconventional works of contemporary art has changed the role of documentation in the process of preservation and conservation. It has become absolutely necessary for the future existence of the work, in order to further understanding, acquisition, installation, arranging, displaying, transportation, conservation and many other areas. Besides a description of the traditional history of the object, its materials and techniques used, or the conservation work which it was subjected to, the documentation is also a form of a copyright certificate, an educational base, and sometimes it may even replace the work of art. This research paper defines a new role for the importance of documentation of contemporary works of art. It focuses on what it means to 'preserve through the documentation' and on the importance of profiled interviews with artists. It describes how and when to document the work of art and how to capture its intangible aspects. Based on the example of installation art, specific methods and a current registration system are pointed out.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.