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Visual History of the Holocaust: Rethinking Curation in the Digital Age

Project description

Allied films on the Holocaust pave the way for digital curation of cultural heritage

There are images that you will never forget. Digitization allows for exploring how historical images—moving images in particular—shape our perception of the past. This also opens the door to innovative ways to curate them and to link them to other historical records referring to the same events. As we approach eight decades since World War II and the Holocaust, the EU-funded Visual History of the Holocaust project is focusing on the digital curation of film records relating to the discovery of Nazi concentration camps and other atrocity sites. Techniques developed by the project will be applicable to many other fields including research, education, and media industries.


The Holocaust is a central reference point for European history and a ‘negative founding myth’ of European integration. VHH is an innovation action that focuses on the digital curation and preservation of film records relating to the discovery of Nazi concentration camps and other atrocity sites. We combine state-of-the-art concepts and practices from information science, museum pedagogy and digital storytelling to design a new approach for the engagement with a significant aspect of European audio-visual heritage. While the majority of these film records are in the public domain as they were produced by Allied military personnel on government order, hardly any of them are available in digital formats fit for the purposes of technology enabled research, analysis, and curatorial re-use. Building on the advanced digitisation of a relevant selection of these materials VHH will develop new methods in digital curation and apply sophisticated technologies to the analysis and time-based annotation of these historical materials. Filmic records will be dynamically linked with photographs, audio, and texts in order to discover and unlock layers of context and meaning inaccessible through traditional linear narrative modes of dissemination. Our aim is to develop a ground-breaking inclusive concept of digital curation to innovate curatorial work with digitised film and media collections and to create best practice models and tool kits for advanced digitisation, automated analysis, linking of different media types, and the linking of tangible and intangible assets. VHH will develop new forms of learning experiences and user interaction with the digital data and the stories contained in it. We will curate a discrete set of engagement levels to facilitate users’ engagement and co-creation. The resulting prototype applications will deliver new impulses to a range of industry sectors in education, museums, libraries and archives, cultural tourism and the content industries.

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 995 137,50
Nussdorfer strasse 64/6
1090 Wien

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Ostösterreich Wien Wien
Activity type
Research Organisations
Other funding
€ 0,00

Participants (12)