Since 2004 I had looked up at the dozens of heavy file boxes of film laying dormant on top of what used to be my darkroom. What would happen if I died and the contents were carelessly tossed ? Or if the boxes remained up there forever, would they eventually just deteriorate ? The historical contents needed a proper home, a permanent storage place.
In 1986 I starting photographing performance art for The Banff Centre and since 1988 I have been the photographer of much of Calgary’s Performing Arts community. I photographed 100’s of performances, worked with 100’s of talented artists. Everything I photographed was labelled, and carefully preserved but what now? Since 2004 pretty much everything became digital. Work can be sourced at the touch of a button, but my silver halide film archive was deep and arduous and I felt a responsibility to make sure all this film, this body of work created by myself and so many people should always be accessible.
On September 10th 2015 (my birthday) I donated all my films to Glenbow.
Nancy Cope was the first step in my lead to figuring out how to properly make a Cultural Property Donation. Nancy now works at SAIT but she had a long history working at the Glenbow (when it was still call The Glenbow…long story) She introduced me to Doug Cass who carried out two appraisals and the 18 month task of accessioning the collection.
Attached here is the link http://www.glenbow.org/collections/search/findingAids/archhtm/lee.cfm It’s a 30 page document (complete with some scanned imagery) cataloguing all the theatrical performances, brochures, artistic portraits, and promotions from 1989-2004 It’s a breeze to find everything and chances are if you are an artist that I worked with during this time period you will find your images neatly preserved and forever now accessible in what is entitled “Trudie Lee Fond.” ~trudie