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Posted on Tuesday January 23, 2024

Updated on Thursday June 20, 2024

Digital Storytelling Festival 2024

The Digital Storytelling Festival - organised by the Europeana Initiative - boosted participants storytelling skills. 

Digital Storytelling Festival Graphic, 21 - 22 May 2024
Europeana Foundation
21 — 22 May 2024
10:00 — 15:00 Online

Every year, the Europeana Initiative runs the Digital Storytelling Festival. The international event encourages cultural heritage professionals, educators, creatives, and students from Europe and beyond to boost their storytelling skills and tell stories exploring culture. We hope our two-day event of talks, showcases and hands-on workshops inspires participants to create connections between art, culture and history and the contemporary world.

Explore the programme below and watch Day 1 and Day 2 of the Festival!

Day 1 - Tuesday 21 May 2024




Introduction to the festival, followed by keynote talk.

Thomas Flynn, Digital Heritage Consultant, UK.

Now more than ever, 3D data is being captured and created by both amateurs and professionals within but also outside the cultural heritage sector. This developing body of spatial media—which represents topics and themes from across global history—affords us fresh opportunities for telling stories in new and novel ways. Let's uncover some of these opportunities, as well as some of the challenges, facing GLAM organisations seeking to leverage 3D to achieve their goals as educational and memory institutions.


    Panel session - Folk and intangible heritage

    Maja L. Musum, The National Museum, Norway

    Many Norwegians feel a close attachment to folk costumes. These traditional garments can create a sense of belonging, but also of alienation. In the exhibition Skakke Folkedrakter, six artists have used cultural heritage as their source of inspiration. In return the artists have - perhaps unintentionally - contributed significantly back to the field of cultural heritage, the stories we tell of the past, and our contemporary constructions of the past.

    Foteini Veneiri, Heterotopia, Greece

    Digital storytelling through online live museum theatre: unveiling archives, communicating intangible heritage. The presentation explores the intersection of digital storytelling and museum theatre in online live programmes for cultural institutions. With a focus on interpreting archives and intangible heritage, it examines the potential of liveness and performativity in engaging remote audiences, through case studies from the Museum of Greek Folk Musical Instruments and the Cultural Foundation of the National Bank of Greece.



    Grab a coffee, stretch and gear up for more storytelling!


    Panel session - Play and games

    Marc van Hasselt, Novitas heritage, Netherlands

    Storytelling is integral to history and to heritage interpretation. Through new and interactive media, stories have become increasingly interactive and immersive. Instead of traditional 'lean-back media', like television and movies, the younger generations have become accustomed to 'lean-forward media' like video games. How can heritage sites adapt to this development? In this talk, we will explore the definition of terms such as interactive, immersive, games and play.

    Gabriele Aroni, School of Digital Arts of Manchester Metropolitan University in the UK

    This presentation will discuss how commercial digital games explore cultural heritage, as well as the problems that might arise in terms of cultural property and appropriateness of use, and potential solutions. Through case studies from Italy, Canada, China, and India, the presentation will display case studies on various implementations of cultural heritage in digital games and propose methods of collaboration between cultural heritage institutions and the creative industries.


    Lunch break

    Rest and recharge


    Workshops - running concurrently, choose one!

    13:00-14:30 Workshop #1 - Beth Daley, Europeana Foundation

    Writing journeys. We’ll use free writing and cultural heritage material from the Europeana website to explore the theme of ‘journey’. You might take a personal or reflective journey, or maybe you’re drawn to practical things like transport, maps and routes. There are no wrong answers here and no experience necessary. Bring a pen and paper or a digital device to write on. You’re welcome to share what you write or keep it to yourself. This is open to all as part of the main conference programming. 

    13:00-13:30 Workshop #2 - Valentina Bachi, Antonella Fresa, Susanna Capannini, Photoconsortium

    Digital storytelling with Europeana galleries workshop. How can the Europeana website help us build narratives? How can we utilise this tool in the classroom? The workshop will explain and demonstrate how to develop new digital storytelling activities for students by creating galleries on thanks to the gallery builder tool, exploring the website's functionalities and establishing thematic connections between the items made available in by thousands of Institutions from all over Europe. This workshop is fully booked.


    Social moment

    Listen to a DJ set from Ladies on Records and connect with other audience members through an interactive and creative activity, led by the Digital Storytelling Festival team.

    Day 2 - Wednesday 22 May 2024




    Introduction to day two, followed by keynote talk

    Georgina Holt, National Portrait Gallery, Australia

    If you ask Google ‘Is social media still social?’, there are 10 billion results but no definitive answers. In this keynote address, Georgina Holt from the National Portrait Gallery of Australia will tackle this question head-on with anecdotes, case studies and powerful storytelling. From completely avoiding bans for posting (artistic) nudes to putting the artist first, we probably won’t come up with an answer, but we’ll have fun trying!


    Panel session - Innovative media

    Maria Utsi, International Sami Film Institute, Norway

    ÁRRAN 360° is a fusion of Indigenous storytelling and innovative technology. ÁRRAN 360° presents 360-degree films presented in a purpose-built giant lávvu (traditional Sámi tent) equipped with a high tech 270-degree screen, designed to showcase these special works.

    Entering the film lávvu the audience step into a circular space where the present meets the future. They are surrounded by the ambience of sámi soulscapes and through our stories they experience sámi lands and worldviews.

    The 360-degree format has previously been primarily used as a visual technique, and has to a small extent been tested in the development of story-driven films with a clear narrative. The films shown created for ÁRRAN 360° thus represent film innovation both nationally and internationally and challenge the centered and linear narrative principle of traditional Western cinema.

    The project is initiated by the International Sámi Film Institute, and premiered as an official part of the extended program of ́The Sámi Pavilion ́at the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale de Venezia.

    Karl Sedgwick, Domingos Studios, UK

    Liverpool Court Housing. The ‘Courts’ is a digital recreation of 19th century Liverpool courtyard housing, once prevalent in the city. These high-density, low-quality dwellings were home to half of the working-class population by the mid-1800s. Despite their historical significance, only one example remains today on Pembroke Place. Motivated by my grandmother's upbringing I embarked on this project to honour her memory and raise awareness of this aspect of Liverpool's past.

    Marinos Ioannides, Director of the UNESCO Chair on Digital Cultural Heritage at the Cyprus University of Technology

    The Lambousa Trawler: Beyond its historical significance as Cyprus' oldest and last-of-its-kind fishing boat, the Lambousa's digital rebirth serves a broader purpose. It becomes a reservoir of technological, engineering, and contractual insights, pivotal in physically restoring this unique piece of Cypriot heritage. The once-nomadic fishing vessel now stands as a testament to the EU island's contemporary maritime narrative and as a digital #MemoryTwin to the generations to come.



    Grab a coffee, stretch and gear up for more storytelling!


    Panel session - Opening audiences to new horizons

    Kornelia Binicewicz, Ladies on Records, Turkey

    Anthropologist and DJ Kornelia Binicewicz founded the ‘Ladies on Records’ initiative to highlight female artists in the music industry. She will tell us about her mission to highlight invisible women in musical heritage, the women who inspire her and the digital resources she uses to uncover their work.

    Iris Groschek, Neuengamme Concentration Camp Memorial, Germany

      Let´s talk about TikTok and Memorial Sites. As the world's first Concentration Camp Memorial on TikTok, we have already gained some experience on how to reach a young audience on that platform. The presentation will share theory and best practices with you: How can storytelling on TikTok help memorials and places of remembrance that deal with the crimes of National Socialism during the Second World War to advance their causes and themes?


      Social moment

      Quiz! Test your storytelling knowledge with the first Digital Storytelling Festival pub quiz!

      12.35 - 13.00


      Rest and recharge


      Workshops - running concurrently, choose one!

      Workshop #1 - Stories that Move Anne Frank House, Netherlands

      Stories that Move is a free online toolbox for teaching about diversity and discrimination, guided by young people’s real stories and experiences. In this workshop you will learn new strategies to talk about discrimination with your students. We will introduce different ways to discuss these complex and sensitive topics, using the stories of young people across Europe. In this workshop you will also get to know more about the the Anne Frank Videodiary project, an example of how we can use stories to tell history in a modern way. Please sign up for this workshop when you register for the event.

      Workshop #2 - DE-BIAS project - Kerstin Arnold, Isabel Beirigo, Marta Franceschini, Sofie Taes, Maria Teresa Natale

      The DE-BIAS project aims to detect and contextualise potentially harmful language in cultural heritage collections. Working with themes like migration and colonial past, gender and sexual identity, ethnicity and ethno-religious identity, the project collaborates with minority communities to better understand the stories behind the language used - or behind the gaps apparent. This workshop will surface some of these and ask the question how we can tell more appropriate stories collaboratively. This workshop is fully booked.