Introduction

Educators, researchers, culture lovers and creatives enjoy and reuse Europeana’s digital cultural heritage to reach their own goals. Be inspired by the innovative ways they are enriching educational resources, opening up new areas of research, or creating new art, games and entertainments.

Education

‘While looking through Europeana’s collections, I found amazing images of locomotives and steam engines which inspired me to make a set of videos. The most mind-blowing image for me was a picture of the steam carriage patent from 1828. The idea that this image from almost 200 years ago evolved into the modern-day car really cemented my realisation that engineering and history are intertwined and I wanted to share this idea with other people.’

Teddy Tablante is an American Mechanical and Electrical Engineer with over a decade of experience in the semiconductor industry. He developed his Branch Education YouTube channel to teach engineering, science and technology topics to 14-18 year olds. Teddy’s videos on steam engines won the 2019 Europeana STEM Challenge. Find out more

Branch Education,'How do steam engines work?', 2019.

Europeana, Minecraft & Mozilla Hubs by Emma Abbate / Connecting Formal and Informal Education with Digital Cutlural Heritage, August 2020, CC BY-SA

‘I use Europeana as part of a gamified approach to digital archives that enhances creativity in the classroom. Students collect material on Europeana and use it to solve a problem and complete a challenge in the virtual world on Minecraft or in the augmented virtual reality of Mozilla Hubs.’

Emma AbbateTeacher, Italy

'Felt monsters', Augmented Age of Inventions and Discoveries, Oulunkylän yhteiskoulu, Finland, 2019, CC BY-SA

Our pupils used Europeana’s collections to inspire the design of some robotic sea monsters, as part of an Erasmus+ project for secondary schools called Augmented Age of Inventions. The results are truly original - far from the mainstream manga style that normally influences their art.

Annamaria Pérez-MoralArt teacher, Catalonia

Research

Using autobiographical writings from prisoners of war

Early-career scholar Dr Saverio Vita looked to Europeana to help him combine his strong interest in ethical issues about war and his experience in working with digital documents. 

'I used Europeana material to build a platform on which anyone can access real war diaries, with comments and introductions. I think that everyone who works in a research context should know and use the available digital collections - they're a great resource for both the general public and academic audiences.' Saverio Vita, research fellow, Italy

Find out more

Re-use page quotation 4a (Saverio Vita)
Title:
Upgrading History. Diaries from the War Front
Creator:
Saverio Vita
Date:
2019
Country:
Italy

Russian and Soviet posters visualisation, Elizaveta Berquin, 2020, In copyright.

I used the data extracted from the Europeana APIs to develop a web application to visualise Soviet posters for my master’s thesis in Digital Humanities. Europeana is a powerful resource that gives access to a rich collection of digitised cultural heritage across Europe and can be used in many creative ways to explore almost any topic.

Elizaveta BerquinResearcher, Belgium

Portrait of Emperor Napoleon I - Rijksmuseum, Netherlands - Public Domain.

I used Europeana images, its Twitter feed and blog in my dissertation research. I wanted to discover who uses digital images and why, as well as how we, as digital cultural heritage creators, can help people discover and reuse digital images by raising their ranking in the Google Images Search.

Michele ReillyProfessor and Digital Projects Coordinator, Arkansas, USA

Antwerpen 1920 exhibition, Jurryt van de Vooren, 2022, CC BY-SA

As a sports historian, I use a lot of Europeana material for my research, for my website Sportgeschiedenis.nl and on social media. At the end of 2021 I asked my university students in Mechelen to collect photos from Europeana of the 1920 Olympics in Antwerp to make an online exhibition about the Games.

Jurryt van de VoorenSports historian, The Netherlands

Creatives

Personal stories transform WW1 video game

Captivated by his own family history during WW1, Yoan Fanise, creative director and co-founder of DigixArt created ‘11-11: Memories Retold’ with animation studio Aardman - a video game with a touching story about the relationship between two men on different sides of the war. 

He says, ‘The game is about the two sides of World War One, shown from the perspective of the Canadian allies and the German army, in which you play both characters. We had a lot of sources from the allied side, but not from the German side. For the character of Harry - the German soldier - we needed more materials and Europeana was a great source for that. Europeana 1914-1918 has so many documents, some of which are very personal, especially those collected from families. Those are the stories that I was looking for in order to humanise Harry.

‘Europeana has a nice licence filter, we know what we can and can’t use and since we wanted to put the documents into the game we needed to make sure the copyright is cleared. This was one of the reasons we used Europeana.'  Find out more

Bandai Namco Entertainment America, '11-11: Memories Retold - Launch Trailer X1, PS4, PC,' November 2018, CC BY.

GIF by Nick Cave, Birmingham, UK. Based on 1. A periscope being used above an operation which is projected onto a lantern, gouache painting by W.R. Seton. Wellcome Collection.  2. Praying skeleton, W. Cheselden. 3. Infirmary, Museon via Europeana

I’ve been making short and funny animated gifs using free archive images on Europeana for a while now and I’ve created a skill-sharing course showing other people how to do it too. I love the fact you can save your favourite Europeana images to use later. It means you can experiment with ideas.

Nick J Cave,Creative animator, @6SecondHistory, UK

World of Art jigsaw puzzle, Marcin Novak

I have used wonderful paintings from Europeana (and elsewhere) in 'World of Art' - a video game for people who love art and jigsaw puzzles. I created it during the pandemic to bring some peace, joy and education to gamers and non-gamers alike.

Marcin NowakGames creator and educator, Poland

Petra Zehner, 2022, CC-BY-SA, based on A Bouquet, 1820, Rijksmuseum, Netherlands, Public Domain.

Collage artists are perpetually looking for copyright-free, high quality images to work with, and Europeana is an excellent source. I use their images for personal work and the weekly creative challenges of Paris Collage Collective. Placing old images into new contexts teaches us more about who we are than any history book.

Petra ZehnerGraphic artist and founder of Paris Collage Collective, France

Culture lovers

Gabriel Rosenstock is a bilingual poet and was inspired by artwork he found in Europeana from the Slovak National Gallery to write a series of tanka (Japanese for 'a little song') poems in Irish and English. 'Ekphrastic tanka responds to artwork and is one of my favourite literary pursuits - works of art triggering spontaneous utterances, guided by syllabic rules.'

is this what I am
a knight-errant on the road
some kind of throwback
     i am my own laughing stock
     and the butt of my own jokes

an é sin mise
ridire fáin ar an ród
neach ait ón seanam
    im' cheap magaidh agam féin
    cúis gháire ó Dhia chugainn

               Gabriel Rosenstock, poet, Ireland

Re-use page quotation - Gabriel Rosenstock
Title:
Don Quichotte
Creator:
Majerník, Cyprián
Date:
1943
Institution:
Slovak National Gallery
Country:
Slovakia

Portrait by Pookie_art, in copyright, based on Vilhelmine Biering (1852-1899), The National Library of Denmark CC BY-NC-ND

I am a freelance artist from Thailand and I specialise in making artwork about people in history. I really enjoy searching and looking at pictures on the Europeana website. There are all kinds of artworks there to help me to learn about art creation. The things I find on Europeana are interesting and inspiring.

PookieArtist, Thailand

Chessmen in the form of Saracens and Crusaders. Wellcome Collection, United Kingdom - CC BY.

As co-producers of a podcast shining a light on the oft-forgotten history of our Scottish Borderlands, we find Europeana a valuable source of imagery and archive material. The depiction of The Crusades in terms of a chess game is striking and chimes with our narrative. Using Europeana has triggered many ideas for future podcast instalments.

Mary Craig and Doug SwanPodcasters, UK

New Year card, Marie Bellando Mitjans (aka Gabian Spirit), 2021, CC BY-SA

I use Europeana material to create collages for things like New Year cards. I spotted several beautiful pictures from 1920-21 in Europeana. I found maps to create graphic backgrounds as well as landscapes, fashion pictures, graphic elements, stamps, etc. Europeana is really easy to use and it's genuinely interesting and fun to work with these testimonies of the past.

Marie Bellando MitjansIllustrator and author, France
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