Survey: High Performance Magazine

Posted August 05, 2010 by Anonymous
Part 1.
Year Founded: 
1c. Organization's annual budget.: 
$100,001 - $250,000
1b. Primary activity[ies] of the organization.: 
Printed Periodical / Publication
Part 2.
2a. Mission Statement: 
HIGH PERFORMANCE came into being because audiences wanted to know as precisely as possible exactly what went on in a performance art piece, who was there, when it took place, and where. The goal was to provide documentation of a medium that was ephemeral and temporal and could not be preserved on museum walls. The magazine thus dedicated itself to documenting performance art through photographs and descriptions of performance events provided by the artist. It For the first few years served as a chronicle of events, rather than as a forum for performance criticism and history. Its audience was international. From the beginning, it included performance throughout the U.S. and other countries. In the early 1980s, readers demanded criticism and critical writing, which was developed. As "performance art" mutated into "performance" including other media (theater, literature, etc.), the magazine coverage expanded in the mid-80s. Contributing editors were established in New York and Chicago. By the 1990s, the attention of the magazine began to turn to community-based art, that is artists in all media working in, with and for their communities in schools, hospitals, community centers, etc.
2b. Organization History / Organizational Overview. Index of important events in organization's history.: 
High Performance was founded in California in 1978 to cover new work in the field of performance art; it grew to cover new work in all disciplines. Between 1978 and 1998 it was read by thousands of subscribers in the U.S. and six other countries. It was honored with government grants at the federal, state, county and city levels, and from four states and numerous foundation and private contributors. During the early 1990s, the arts came under attack in Congress, and the editors perceived a need for a magazine that would illustrate the importance of the arts in contemporary culture. Surveying the field and consulting with its leaders, they became aware of the amount of community-based artwork being produced in the Southeast, and in 1993 relocated to North Carolina and began to refocus the content of High Performance heavily on the arts at work in neighborhoods, communities, schools and other institutions. In 1995, they and a small board of directors decided a whole new organization was called for, Art in the Public Interest, with a mission focused sharply on supporting innovative projects by artists and organizations that integrate the arts into daily life. API officially took over publication of the magazine from its former publishing organization in California, which had begun to focus in another direction. High Performance became a benefit of membership in API. From its original subscriber base of working artists, the magazine’s audience widened to include community organizers, civic leaders, educators, students, healthcare workers, organizational administrators, business people, funders and governmental agency staff. The magazine is carried by more than 300 libraries worldwide. In 1994 it received the Utne Reader’s Alternative Press Award for Cultural Coverage. By 1997, federal, state, local and foundation funding for art magazines had evaporated and API made the decision to terminate the publication at the end of 1997. In 1998, Critical Press (Gardiner, N.Y.) published "The Citizen Artist: 20 Years of Art in the Public Arena," edited by Linda Frye Burnham and Steven Durland, an anthology from High Performance with commentary by the editors, tracing the magazine’s path from performance art to community art and defining it as always outside the mainstream of the art world.
2c. Exhibition / Programming / Publishing History.: 
Timeline: 1977 Fall: Linda Frye Burnham, a Public Relations Officer at UC Irvine, takes a $2,000 Credit Union loan to start High Performance magazine as a sole proprietorship in Los Angeles, Calif. 1978 Spring: First issue of HP released. Linda Burnham is founding editor. Richard Newton is Associate Editor. Suzanne Lacy is on the cover. 1979: Richard Newton leaves staff. 1980: Burnham forms a publishing partnership with Astro Artz, a small publishing company owned by Susanna Dakin. 1980: Astro Artz publishes first of six books by/about performance artists. 1983 Spring: Steven Durland hired as Astro Artz/High Performance general manager. 1983 Spring: Astro Artz incorporated. 1984 Summer: Astro Artz receives nonprofit, tax-exempt status, 501 c3. Forms first board of directors (Susanna Dakin, Linda Burnham, Joe Wyatt, Alisa Arp, Lin Hixson, Stephen Seemayer. 1985 Winter: Linda Frye Burnham resigns as editor of HP. 1985 Winter: Claire peeps hired as Astro Artz executive director. 1986: Steven Durland becomes editor of HP. 1989 Spring: HP moves offices to Santa Monica, Calif. (to 18th St. Arts Complex owned by Susanna Dakin and managed by Linda Burnham). 1989 Fall: Claire Peeps resigns as executive director. Steven Durlan appointed new ED. 1992 Spring: Astro Artz officially changes name to 18th Street Arts Complex, consolidates with Highways Performance Space (directed by Linda Burnham and Tim Miller at 18th St.) HP now published by 18th St. 1993 Summer: Linda Burnham and Steven Durland relocate to North Carolina. Durlan editor of HP, publisher still 18th St. in Santa Monica. 1995: Burnham and Durland and small board form Art in the Public Interest as 501 c3 and take over publication of HP from 18th St. Board includes Burnham, Alan Dachman, WIlliam Clevelan, Kathie deNobriga. 1996 Spring: first issue of HP published by API (#71). Editors Burnham and Durland. 1997 Summer: Last issue of HP published (#76). 1998: Last HP business closed out with subscribers and distributors. NOTE: API continues to exist. In 1999 it founded the Community Arts New Work on the WWW (http// By 2006, the Web site had some 50,000 visitors per month. Annual budget: $150,000.5) Names and e-mail addresses of Founders, Board Members, Directors or other key individuals. Linda Fry Burnham: Steven Durland: Susanna Dakin: (please contact Linda Burnham) Claire Peeps:
Part 3.
3a. Names and email addresses of Founders, Board Members, Directors or other key individuals:: 
Linda Frye Burnham
Additional Names and email addresses of Founders, Board Members, Directors or other key individuals: 
Steven Durland
Additional Names and email addresses of Founders, Board Members, Directors or other key individuals: 
Susanna Dakin please contact Linda Burnham
Additional Names and email addresses of Founders, Board Members, Directors or other key individuals: 
Claire Peeps
3b. Could any of these individuals assist in providing an oral history of your organization?: 
Part 4.
4a. Is organization currently active?: 
4b. Year activity suspended if no longer active.: 
Part 5.
5a. Type of organization at its founding.: 
Non-Profit [IRS certified]
5b. Type of organization currently, or at the termination of activities.: 
Non-Profit [IRS certified]
Part 6.
6a. Does the organization have an archive?: 
6b. Are there any short or long-term threats to the organization?: 
None / Not Applicable
6c. Other threats to the organization:: 
Not applicable
Part 7.
7a. How important is to the organization to preserve the organization’s historical material. From 1 – Very Important to 5 – Not Important.: 
1. Very Important
7b. Has planning for the preservation and documentation of archive begun?: 
7c. Does the organization know how and where to seek expertise and assistance?: 
Not Applicable
7d. Does the organization have specific concerns regarding starting an archive working with its historic materials?: 
Not Applicable
Part 8.
8a. Is the organization's archives in the collection of another institution or promised to one?: 
8a. Location: 
The archives of High Performance Magazine have been donated to the Getty Research Institute, as of November, 2006. It is being processed and is not yet accessible to researchers.
8b. Archival materials are also located at:: 
Where are these locations?: 
Not applicable.
Part 9.
9. Does the organization maintain archives for any other organization.: 
IF YES to 9: 10a. Please describe:
Part 10a.
10a. Is the archive accessible to scholars, curators or researchers?: 
Part 10d.
10d. Would you allow access in the future?: 
Part 10e.
10e. Under what circumstances would access to archives be allowed.: 
The Getty Research Institute will allow access to the High Performance Magazine archives once they have been processed and catalogued. Researchers will then be able to consult the archives in the Research Library’s Special Collections Reading Room. Access will be available to patrons who have an institutional affiliation. Independent scholars and curators will need to complete a short application describing their project. Undergraduates will need to complete an application and obtain references.
Part 11.
The following questions address the historical materials (type, quantity and storage) of the organization. 11a. Paper Files and Documents: 
Artist Files
Board Minutes
Exhibition or Production Files
Financial Records
Legal Documents
By-laws / Incorporation Documents
Other Paper Files
11b. Artwork and Documentation: 
Audiotapes [Any Format]
Oral History, Recordings and / or Transcripts
Other Artwork. Please describe below.
Posters for the Womans’ Building 7 color photographs by Benita Ely for 1972 installation at 18th St complex. 8 framed items (prints) 1 cardboard portfolio containting posters? prints?
11c. Press and Promotional Materials: 
Announcements, Mailing Cards, etc.
Newspaper / Magazine / Media Clippings
Posters / Flyers
Other Press or Promotional Materials:
11d. Printed Publications: 
Artists' Publications
Commercially Published Materials
Programs of Events
Other Printed Publications
11e. Other: 
Layouts / Sketches / Instructions for Installations
Layouts / Sketches / Instructions for Performances
Mock-Ups / Models / Prototypes
Part 12.
12. What years does the materials cover?: 
Part 13.
13a. How is the material stored?: 
Banker Boxes
Please describe: 
The archive is being rehoused in acid-free, archivally sound boxes.
13b. Are some or all of these storage units “archival”?: 
Not Applicable
Part 14.
14a. Estimated Number of Boxes or Milk-Crate Sized Storage Units: 
81 - 90
14b. Estimated Number of Archive Drawers: 
14c. Estimated Number of Archive Notebooks: 
14d. Estimated the total Linear Feet. ["Linear Feet" is standard measure of the quantity of archival materials on the basis of shelf space occupied or the length of drawers in vertical files or the thickness of horizontally filed materials. For example, a: 
151 - 200
Part 15.
15. Is the historical materials - or archives - inventoried or catalogued in any way, either formally or otherwise?: 
Part 16.
16a. Is there a key, index or finding aid to the materials inventoried?: 
16c. Electronic Based:: 
Word Processing Document [i.e. Word]
Part 16 / Electronic Files & Archival Management
16f. Does the organization have a back-up program, or back-up schedule, for its electronic records and perform monitoring of its removable media (i.e. floppies, ZIP disks, CD-ROMs, DVDs, portable hard drives, etc.)?: 
16g. Who is responsible for working with the archival material?: 
Full-Time Archivist
Part 17.
17. How are new materials processed?: 
Electronic (Database, etc.)
Part 18.
18. What, if any, conservation methods are in place for both physical materials and electronic data?: 
Controlled Access
Disaster Plan
Acid-Free Housing
Fireproof Cabinet
Fireproof Building / Fireproof Room
Part 20.
20a. What are the goals for the historical materials for the next year?: 
re-house collection in archivally sound boxes, folders, etc.
20b. What are the biggest challenges to reaching these short-term goals?: 
20c. What goals are in place for the historical materials for the next three to five years?: 
full cataloging with access via EAD finding aid and collection-level record in library catalogue
20d. What are the biggest challenges to reaching these long term goals?: 
20e. Are there any additional goals for the organizations historic materials?: 
Part 21.
21. Estimated cost to achieve these archival goals for the next year.: 
Part 22.
22. Estimated cost to achieve these archival goals for the next five years.: 
Part 23.
23d. Other - Please describe below.: 
Staffing and staff time of conservators and reformatter
Part 24.
24. What archival issues could / should visual arts organizations address collectively in the next three to five years? Ranked from 1 (highest priority) to 5 (lowest priority).24a. Shared standards / protocols for digitization: 
Promote professional standards / protocols for digitization
Part 25.
25a. Is the organization a member of, or in contact with, any organizations concerned with archival issues?: 
25b. Who?: 
Many of my colleagues are members of the American Archivist Association. They have done presentations of our Special Collections materials as part of the annual meeting.
Who executed this survey.: 
Nancy Perloff, Collections Curator, Modern and New Media Collections, Getty Research Institute
I wish to defer payment and allow AS-AP to use these funds to further AS-AP’s efforts to preserve the history of the alternative and avant-garde movement in America.