Digital Downtown serves as a complement to the main library website for the Downtown Collection, the largest archival collecting endeavor at Fales Library & Special Collections, NYU’s main repository for archival materials in the arts and humanities. With a focus on the late twentieth-century underground arts scenes of SoHo and the Lower East Side, the Downtown Collection holds a wealth of unique materials, including video, recorded music, and documents pertaining to downtown theater, writing, visual art, performance art, and activism.
Digital Downtown offers multiple pathways into thinking and teaching about the collection, as well as the basic information you need to get started. There are essays about the collection’s historical context and theoretical underpinnings, how-to guides, and resources for faculty developing courses around archives, multimedia literacy, and the public humanities. You can explore work students have produced using materials from the Downtown Collection, in courses led by NYU faculty, librarians, and archivists. This website also gathers together useful resources about archives from across the NYU Libraries website, creating a centralized location where these resources are easy to see and access.