Out of the Archives publishes short books that create new knowledge from archival materials in the Screen Arts Mavericks and Makers Collections at the University of Michigan Special Collections Research Center, which document the creative activities of a number of notable independent film and media makers. Books in the series examine subjects and materials that have not received sufficient prior attention, including unsung and unproduced films as well as works that would benefit from reappraisal in light of unexamined archival documents. The series supports researchers’ individual trajectories through the archives while encouraging innovative archival configurations, selections, and approaches. A premise of the series is that sustained archival engagements suggest pathways and perspectives that are unavailable through other means and that archival research can generate new paradigms along with new knowledge. The philosophy of the series leverages what can be found in the archives, however fragmentary, incomplete, and idiosyncratic, rather than trying to be comprehensive or definitive.
Each of the individual archives in the Mavericks and Makers Collections is unique and different, like the filmmakers themselves. The respective collections vary in size and box count, although all have been processed and arranged chronologically by project title along the trajectory from pre-production to production through post-production and distribution/exhibition for completed projects. Contents include a wide variety of materials: scripts, correspondence, memos, clippings, notes, ephemera, photographs, along with selected personal items that suggest the ways filmmaking was never a purely professional matter for these individuals who worked independently and/or on the margins of the media industries.
For more on the collections, visit this website.
Matthew Solomon, Professor at University of Michigan
Philip Hallman, Film Studies Field Librarian at the University of Michigan Library