Crafts offer a living expression of the traditions and beliefs of cultural communities around the world, expressed in tangible objects such as jewellery, textiles, furniture and more. The techniques required to create these objects itself is a form of cultural heritage, requiring preservation as much as the objects themselves.
It is both this tangible and intangible cultural heritage which the CRAFTED project has worked to enrich, preserve and promote, with many inspiring outcomes. It ran between September 2021 and June 2023, and was a Generic Service project funded under CEF Telecom programme.
New content on Europeana.eu
During the project, 28 cultural heritage institutions (including museums, universities, sound and video archives, research centres, theatres and galleries) from seven European countries contributed new items from their collections to Europeana.eu, many of them for the first time. At the end of the project, around 170,000 new items, including images, videos, sound records and a few items in 3D have been documented and published. Some of the content was digitised during the project.
The items include a range of tangible and intangible crafts heritage which fall under the project’s broad themes. These included fashion and textiles (like costumes and accessories); traditional crafts and their reappropriation by contemporary users (from household utensils to musical instruments); and analogue media production (including the equipment, technologies and processes used to make television).
Data providers also identified numerous cultural heritage items on crafts heritage already published on Europeana.eu and improved and upgraded them to open licences, making them available for reuse.
Throughout the project, CRAFTED partners raised awareness about craft heritage and artisanship by publishing and promoting editorials on Europeana.eu and other platforms. In total, CRAFTED partners published 23 blogs, 10 galleries and three online exhibitions, which are collected into a Making Culture page on Europeana.eu. A Youtube playlist also gathers together the more than 30 videos that were published during the project, featuring artisan heritage from five European countries (Greece, the Netherlands, France, Croatia, and Italy). The editorials cover craft heritage through a diverse range of topics: pottery, lace making, analogue photography, glassblowing, weaving, jewellery crafting and more.
In total, CRAFTED editorials were viewed over 60,000 times during the runtime of the project, and have created a robust oeuvre of work around artisan heritage in Europe.