Indiana University Libraries Moving Image Archive  is pleased to announce the first of its kind summer school in the United States. 'Biennial Audio-Visual Archival Summer School' is set to take place on the Indiana University campus in May 2019.



Where : Indiana University, Bloomington
When: May 13, 2019 to May 26, 2019


BAVASS 2019 is an initiative of IU Libraries Moving Image Archive in collaboration with International Federation of Film Archives and Co-ordinating Council of Audiovisual Archives Associations.

The core mission of film and media archivists is to preserve the nation's audio-visual cultural heritage. Audio-visual collections age, deteriorate, and expand exponentially in the digital age; therefore, it has become vitally important to invest in training, outreach and assistance programs aimed at providing guidance to professionals whose responsibility is preservation and access. BAVASS 2019 has been initiated with the vision to start a collaborative network of film archivists to improve broad adherence to film archival standards.

The two-week comprehensive summer school will cover a complete range of the issues and topics required to work in the field of audio-visual preservation. The training will be conducted in a compressed time frame, and at an affordable rate, taught by professionals in the field and with a proven model developed over the past four years by the FIAF (International Federation of Film Archives) Training and Outreach Program.

The rigorous summer school will cover both lectures and hands on sessions on film preservation and conservation, film restoration, digitization, disaster recovery simulation, cataloging, programming and many more. These courses will be taught by people who are experts in their fields from all over the world. Moreover, an experienced group of trainers from IU will lead a few workshops at the summer school. Additionally, there will be film screenings of restored movies like 'War and Peace' (1966) over the weekends during the summer school.


After completing the audio-visual archival summer school participants will:

  • Have a comprehensive understanding of issues and topics required to work in the field of audio-visual archiving and preservation
  • Become equipped with tools preserve and digitize audio-visual material
  • Learn to restore a film using new digital and analog technologies 
  • Learn about disaster preparedness and response
  • Become a part of a collaborative network of like-minded film archivists committed to the cause of preserving their cultural heritage
  • Gain access to thousands of audio-visual cultural heritage items from 50 institutions 

TUITION: $1500 (includes housing)


For more information, please email

  • Online pre-arrival modules

Pre-arrival modules will be available on our website in the month of April 2019. Students will be able to access study materials online and take a quiz to check their understanding. Keep checking this space for more details.

  • On-campus summer school program 

Lectures and hands on workshops will be facilitated by experts in the field from all around the world on the Indiana University, Bloomington campus.

The program will expand over the following year to support the sustainability of the knowledge and skills gained during the summer school through ongoing collaboration achieved through Zoom meetings. Students will meet online to discuss successes they have achieved, and brainstorm solutions to challenging problems they are experiencing. IU staff and expert trainers will also participate in these meetings to hear the kind of challenges the network participants are experiencing and to offer advice. 

Topics of some of the workshops or lectures that will be offered:

Compulsory lectures [for all selected participants]:

  • History of Film Technology

In this lecture, the origins of film will be examined from the earliest experimentation onwards. We will look at the development of color and sound cinematography, and at the different film formats that have existed. Film production routes will be discussed, leading to an understanding of how the materials found in film archive are related to each other and to the finished work. Some of the idiosyncrasies of film technology will be discussed.

Expert: David Walsh

  • Copyright for Libraries and Archives      

Copyright law figures significantly in the work of archives, and increasingly so, as archivists expand the services they provide and extend access to their collections through innovative uses of technology. This session will cover the basics of copyright law as they apply to the programs and services of libraries and archives today.

Expert: Nazareth A. Pantaloni

  • Digital Preservation

Expert: Kara Van Malssen, Dave Rice, Jon Dunn

  • TV and Video Technology

Expert: Reto Kromer

  • Photo Preservation and Conservation

The learning objective of the workshop is to identify the color and black & white photographic processes most commonly found in museum, library and archive collections. The physical and chemical characteristics of historic and contemporary photographic media will be reviewed. These analog processes, starting with daguerreotype and working through to Polacolor, will be placed into historic and technological context with discussion covering deterioration mechanisms and specific vulnerabilities. Richly illustrated lectures will be supplemented with hands-on training focused the visual identification of principal characteristics.

Expert: Paul Messier

  • Access

Expert: Jon Dunn, Jon Cameron

  • Disaster Preparedness and Response

The disaster preparedness and response workshop will be structured around a simulated disaster. Attendees will arrive and participate as “volunteers” for the salvage and recovery of an audiovisual collection following a flood. Participant/volunteers will work together throughout the day to safely and effectively salvage and stabilize the collection. Participants will begin by reviewing general disaster first response and safety steps. Next they will assess damage, begin to plan triage actions, prioritize media for recovery, and assemble a list of needed supplies. Participants will then organize the space, create teams, and develop a workflow for salvage and cleaning. They will be given instruction in appropriate cleaning procedures for different media types, following which they will begin the recovery operation and work together to salvage the collections. The day will conclude with a discussion on preparedness takeaways from the workshop and next steps for incorporating audiovisual media into existing disaster plans.

Expert: Kara Van Malssen

  • A New Programming Model for University Cinematheques

Expert: Jon Vickers

  • Cataloging and Metadata for Moving Images

Expert: Rachel Behnke and Corinne Vorster

  • Open Source Tools and Resources

Expert: Reto Kromer/ Dave Rice

  • Personal & Small Scale AV Digitization

Don't have a million-dollar budget to digitize media? Through this course, learn realistic actions that can be taken to establish small scale audiovisual digtization set ups.Topics covered will include: how best to inventory your collection; preparing for preservation; pros and cons of preservation file formats for films and media; making video preservation masters and archival film scans; and storing and managing your preserved works.

Expert: Carmel Curtis

  • Archive Management Policies and Funding Strategies

Expert: Rachael Stoeltje

  • Digital Restoration - Films of the Silent Era

This course provides a detailed process overview and technical workflow for restoring films of the silent era (or more specifically, film materials that do not include a synchronized soundtrack). Topics covered include: understanding the archaeology of original elements, research and identification of source materials (not just film), reproducing early color systems, reconstruction, restoration, frame rates, rendering options, and ethical considerations. 

Expert: Rob Byrne

  • Quality Control for Media Digitization Projects

The workshop will begin with an overview of the QC process as an exercise in risk management. The second part of the workshop will be hands-on with MDPI QC procedures and tools for checking the output of audio, video, and film digitization.

Expert: Mike Casey

  • The Current State of Audio Preservation

Expert: Mike Casey

  • Film and AV Object Conservation

Experts: Tim Wagner and Amber Bertin

  • Outreach and Pedagogy

While screenings, home video, and online streaming are common ways to provide access to collections, there are other methods of public outreach that can bring different audiences to media archives. This session will cover a variety of approaches to teaching with archives including integrating digitized film and video into classroom curricula, and community archiving events that train individuals, community leaders, and media producers to care for their own productions. In addition to spreading awareness about the media collections of an institution, this type of civic-minded outreach can play an important social role in increasing public awareness of media literacy and helping individuals learn about their family and local history.

Expert: Andy Uhrich

  • Film Preservation

Small group sessions [Optional]: 

  • Film Projection Workshops

Participants will gain hands-on experience with 35mm threading, show start/end and change-over projection, training on IU Cinema's Kinoton FP-38E studio projectors. 

Expert: Barbara Elina Grassia and Jamie Thomas

  • Film Identification and Handling

Expert: Tim Wagner

  • Film Digitization

In this workshop, students will participate in the digitization of archival films from the various IU collections. Students will get to interact with the film scanner technology and learn how to prepare digitization jobs. This experience will provide students not just with practical experience in film digitization, but a deeper understanding of the choices and variables that each unique film presents, as well as the theories and concepts that are necessary to execute a successful best-practice film scan. 

Expert: Brett Schuermann

  • Audio Digitization

This workshop will cover basic audio preservation procedures for open reel tape, cassette tape, and lacquer disc recordings. There will be hands-on exercises in identification, repair, cleaning, and playback. The class will be held in the IU MDPI audio preservation studios. 

Expert: Melissa Widzinski and Dan Figurelli

  • Born Digital

The expert will share his experiences developing practical solutions related to the acquisition, ingest, and ongoing management of digital materials.  Using professional standards and best practices as a foundation, he will introduce attendees to key issues and considerations in tool selection and iterative workflow implementation to ensure that institutions find sustainable and appropriate solution common digital preservation needs and challenges.

Expert: Mike Shallcross

  • Photo Preservation

The learning objective of the workshop is to identify the color and black & white photographic processes most commonly found in museum, library and archive collections. The physical and chemical characteristics of historic and contemporary photographic media will be reviewed. These analog processes, starting with daguerreotype and working through to Polacolor, will be placed into historic and technological context with discussion covering deterioration mechanisms and specific vulnerabilities. Richly illustrated lectures will be supplemented with hands-on training focused on the visual identification of principal characteristics. 

Expert: Paul Messier

  • Freezing Deteriorated Acetate Films, Preservation

Expert: Andy Uhrich

  • Disaster Simulation Workshop

This is an extension of the disaster preparedness and response session. A disaster will be simulated and students will be expected to salvage and recover an audio-visual collection. 

Expert: Kara Van Malssen

  • Videotape Preservation and Digitization Workshop

This workshop will cover the basic aspects of video preservation for videotape-based formats. Hands-on exercises in physical format identification, inspection and digitization will be included. The class will be held in the IU video preservation studio.

Expert: Rob Mobley

  • Videotape Problems Workshop

This workshop will cover some of the more common problems found in videotape collections. Identifying sticky shed syndrome, baking, cleaning, repair, rehousing and other remediation methods will be discussed and demonstrated. The class will be held in the IU processing and video preservation facilities. 

Expert: Rob Mobley and Jonathan Richardson

  • Copyright Durations and the Public Domain

The public domain represents a rich resource of cultural works that are free to use, reuse and share without any restrictions due to copyright, but determining whether a work is in the public domain can be difficult. This session will survey the law of copyright durations - both under U.S. law and the laws of other countries - with a focus on resources that participants can use to identify works in the public domain in their own collections and elsewhere.

Expert: Nazareth Pantaloni

  • Quality Control of Digitized Film Files

A brief introduction to the principles of quality control and quality assurance and how it fits into the overall MDPI project at IU, followed by hands on demonstrations of the QC process in small groups led by MDPI QC specialists. The sessions will cover the film QC workflow, the basics of Vidicert QC software, spotting and determining defects, tracking and reporting results.

Experts: Darrell Shane Myers, Forrest Greenwood, Charles Mathew Allen 

  • Project Management of Digitization

  • Cataloging

In small group sessions, participants will view and discuss different cataloging systems and records for moving images, as well as consider the tasks and areas of specialization practiced by moving image catalogers. These sessions will demonstrate the nuances of moving image cataloging and the process of decision-making that goes into it. Participants will encouraged to share their current contexts (systems used, institutional mission, nature of collection etc) and raise real world issues they would like resolved. 

Expert: Thelma Ross

  • Digital Restoration: Hands on with HS-ART's Diamant

This course provides a detailed overview of the HS-ART Diamant film restoration suite, with particular emphasis on film-based materials (i.e not video). The course will include a brief overview followed by a demonstration of the capabilities that include strengths and weaknesses as well as a couple "tricks of the trade". This session is designed to be highly interactive with the possibility of student hands-on experimentation if time and logistics allow. 

Expert: Rob Bryne

  • Introduction to Paper Preservation and Conservation

Participants will be introduced to basic theory and practice of the preservation of paper-based collections within archives and libraries. Topics such as basic knowledge of paper as a physical material, the factors contributing to deterioration, and preventive care measures will be covered. Participants will also gain familiarity with conservation treatment options and decision making factors when considering professional conservation treatment.

Expert: Douglas H Sanders

Information about the experts who are committed to teach during the summer school.

Visiting Experts

  • David Walsh

David Walsh received an MA in Chemistry at Oxford university in 1974. His fascination with film led him to joining the Imperial War Museum(IWM) in 1975, where he undertook a project to study the decomposition of cellulose nitrate film. From this starting point he became heavily involved in all aspects of the work of the IWM Film and Video Archive, becoming Head of Preservation in the 1990s. With IWM's growing reliance on digital technology, he found himself increasingly acting as the bridge between the technical and the curatorial, and was appointed Head of Digital Collections in 2012, working particularly on IWM's strategy for digitization and digital preservation, but still acting as the main repository of film preservation knowledge. Internationally he is known for his writings and presentations on many film archive matters, frequently examining the hard facts underpinning many common assumptions about film and digitization. He joined the Technical Commission of the International Federation of Film Archives (FIAF) in 2006 and served as its head from 2011 to 2016. Since 2016 he has divided his time between IWM, where he continues to drive the digital preservation strategy and acts as a mentor to staff learning the craft of film archiving, and FIAF, for whom he is the Training and Outreach Coordinator, taking a lead role in defining and implementing FIAF's training initiatives around the world. Having accumulated over 40 years of knowledge and experience in film archiving, he sees it as his mission to pass that knowledge on to current and future archivists, and takes delight in teaching new generations of enthusiasts. 

  • Dave Rice

Dave Rice is an audiovisual archivist and technologist and a graduate of the L. Jeffrey Selznick School of Film Preservation. Dave’s work focuses on the application of open source technology for audiovisual preservation as well as facilitating coordination and collaboration between communities that preserve media, develop software, and author standards. He has worked as an archivist or archival consultant at media organizations like CUNY, Democracy Now!, The United Nations, WITNESS, DCTV, and Bay Area Video Coalition. Dave also works on developing standards for file formats used in audiovisual preservation, such as Matroska and FFV1, via participation in the Internet Engineering Task Force’s working group on lossless audiovisual formats (cellar). Dave was the 2016 recipient of the National Digital Stewardship Alliance’s Innovation Award and also the 2016 recipient of the Association of Moving Image Archivists’ Alan Stark Award.

  • Kara Van Malssen

Kara Van Malssen is Partner and Senior Consultant at AVP, where she specializes in digital asset management, metadata modeling, digital repository planning, and disaster preparedness and recovery. Her work with disasters and audiovisual collections began in 2005 when, as a graduate student in NYU's Moving Image Archiving and Preservation program, Kara received a grant to do research and provide assistance to damaged audiovisual collections in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In 2012, she has used her experience in disaster response to manage the recovery of 1500 media items at Eyebeam Art+Technology Center, which was flooded during Superstorm Sandy, overseeing 40+ volunteers in an intensive three-day effort to salvage and clean damaged video tapes and computer disks. She has taught disaster preparedness and recovery workshops worldwide for organizations including Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO), NYU’s Moving Image Archiving and Preservation MA program, Tulane University, and the International Centre for the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property’s (ICCROM) Sound and Image Conservation program.

  • Paul Messier

Paul Messier is the founder and Pritzker director of the Lens Media Lab at Yale's Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage. Established in 2015, the focus of the LML is the creation, dissemination, and interpretation of large datasets derived from museum and reference collections of artist materials. Notable among these is the LML's collection of historic photographic papers which is the largest of its kind in the world and was assembled by Paul over the course of decades. The founder of three private companies dedicated to cultural heritage preservation, Paul has published widely, holds two patents covering innovative techniques for the characterization of cultural materials, served elected terms to the Board of Directors of the American Institute for Conservation, and recently completed a multiyear initiative to establish a department of photograph conservation at the State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia funded by the Andrew W. Mellon foundation. He is the 2018 recipient of the Award for Distinction in Scholarship and Conservation jointly presented by the College Art-Association and the American Institute for Conservation.

  • Robert Byrne 

Robert Byrne is film restorer specializing in early cinema and films of the silent era. He holds a MA in Preservation of the Moving Image from the University of Amsterdam, is a graduate of the FIAF Film Restoration Summer School, and was the 2011 recipient of the Haghefilm Foundation Fellowship. To date, Rob has led restorations of more than twenty silent era feature films from as well as numerous short subjects. In 2018 the publication of his restored BEHIND THE DOOR (1919) was recognized as a 2018 Best Single DVD Release at the II Cinema Ritrovato DVD Awards. Rob has also regularly published articles in the FIAF Journal of Film Preservation and AMIA's The Moving Image, and countless film festival catalogs. Rob is also President of the Board of Directors for the San Francisco Silent Film Festival. The San Francisco Silent Film Festival is a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating the public about silent film as an art form and as a culturally valuable historical record. Now in its 24th year, SFSFF produces events that showcase important titles from the silent era, often in restored or preserved prints, with live musical accompaniment by some of the world's finest practitioners of the art of putting music to film. 

  • Thelma Ross

Thelma Ross earned a Masters in Library and Information Science from Kent State University, where she specialized in Moving Image Cataloging. She bean her career as a cataloger at the Academy Film Archive in Los Angeles in 2006, and in 2014 took a cataloging position in the Department of Film at The Museum of Modern Art in New York city. Thelma is the head of the FIAF Cataloguing and Documentation Commission and one of the co-authors of The FIAF Moving Image Cataloguing Manual (2016). She has taught cataloging in a variety of contexts, from workshops and seminars to graduate level courses both in the United States and internationally.

Indiana University Experts

  • Rachael Stoeltje

Rachael Stoeltje is the Director of the Indiana University Libraries Moving Image Archive (IULMIA), International Federation of Film Archives (FIAF) Executive Committee Member and Chair of the Coordinating Council of Audiovisual Archives Associations (CCAAA) for 2018- 2019. For two decades, she has worked on preserving, archiving and providing access to vast and varied film, photography, media and individual personal collections. In 2010, she formally established the IU Libraries’ moving archive collections into the IULMIA archive. In addition to managing the moving image archive, her other work includes research on educational film collections and the Teaching Film Custodians corporation in particular; projects involving current and future use of motion picture film stock; teaching and educational outreach programs and the planning and development for film and video digitization and access for the IU campus wide Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative.

  • Andy Uhrich

Andy Uhrich is a film archivist at the Indiana University Libraries Moving Image Archive. He is also a PhD candidate at IU where he is writing a dissertation on film collectors and non-institutional practices of media preservation. Andy has taught a number of classes and workshops on media preservation. He's worked on restoration projects for IU, Chicago Film Archives and Anthology Film Archives including three films that have been added to the National Film Registry. He's published articles on restoring a 1904 film and magic lantern performance, the challenges of maintaining early computer art, and the intersection of political documentary and TV advertising. Currently a co-chair of the Association of Moving Image Archivists' Education Committee, he has previously served on the executive board of the Center for Home Movies.

  • Jon Vickers

Jon works with his team and many collaborators to present unique, relevant, transformative, quality cinematic experiences in the form of film screenings, retrospectives, premieres, filmmaker visits, special events, and guest lectures. He is also involved in many of the film and media initiatives on the Bloomington campus and in the region through his participation in collaborative projects, on boards, and on festival juries. As founding director, he has been responsible for setting the vision and path for IU Cinema’s growing national reputation as an innovative, collaborative, ambitious, and sustainable film program. He previously served as managing director of the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center at the University of Notre Dame, home to Indiana’s first THX® Certified Cinema, as well as four live performance spaces. In the early 1990s, he also opened the Vickers Theatre with his wife, Jennifer; the venue is an independent, single-screen arthouse in Three Oaks, Michigan, that still thrives today.

  • Jon Dunn
  • Barbara Elena Grassia
  • Jamie Thomas
  • Carmel Curtis
  • Brett Scheuermann
  • Nazareth Pantaloni
  • Mike Shallcross