The modern art of metadata

At a meeting relating to the Resource Discovery Task Force the other day, Caroline Williams compared the variety of resource description metadata standards and profiles in Libraries, Archives, Museums and beyond as being like a Jackson Pollock picture.
She wouldn’t call it a mess (nor would I), but I think we could agree that it’s a bit chaotic.

That got me wondering what the alternatives might be…

Yves Klein?
Monochrome bleu sans titre [Untitled blue monochrome], 1960
Everything the same shade of blue. No, not achievable even if that is what you want.

How about Piet Mondrian?
Nice and neat, but compartmentalized, and quite few empty compartments.

Or Picasso,
trying to fit several perspectives into one picture with the result that… well, two noses.

Actually Caroline had the answer when I asked her what she would like to see,

Bridget Riley
June, 1992-2002
Diversity, but working together.

2 thoughts on “The modern art of metadata

  1. Jackson Pollock – stick and drip – his method – the brush never touches the canvas, the pen never the paper – ergo the writing of metadata is unaccurate.

    How about Piet Mondrian? Well De Stijl – the beauty of the square – no corners cut.

    Bridget Riley – little more than a rehasher of optical illusions to be honest.

    So, undecipherable but well intended, with no corners cut and the illusion of being worthwhile. Yep, that’s nailed it.

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