DARTS. Digital Art and Storytelling for Heritage Audience Development
CREATIVE EUROPE – Cooperation Projects ( 2014-2016)

Leader: Centro Universitario Europeo per I Beni Culturali, Ravello
Partners: Landcommanderij Alden Biesen (B) – Museum Campolung and Association for Protection and Promotion of the Corvin Castle in Hunedoara (Ro) – Università Telematica Pegaso (I)


The project aims at telling the stories about some European historic complexes through new digital technologies and enhancing them through European-wide artistic competitions in order to make them more appealing to new audiences. Using digital narratives will support the collaborative learning and exploration of cultural heritage by young people.
The project involveS three European historic complexes that represent different categories of buildings but share some characteristics:
- they are historic complexes with many stories to tell,
- they has been recently restored,
- they has been transformed into cultural or touristic centers,
- they will profit from actions of enhancement.

The selected case-studies are:
The Villa Rufolo in Ravello (Italy): the villa was built in the XIII century by the noble family Rufolo in the Amalfi Coast, a Unesco site since 1997. The villa was restored in the XIX century by Sir Francis Nevile Reid, member of a wealthy Scottish family, while the wonderful garden was enriched by different rare vegetable species. Today the villa belongs to the “FondazioneRavello” and hosts cultural associations, temporary exhibitions, chamber music concerts, etc… a part of the complex is under restoration. Many famous and unknown characters lived in this area: noble families, common people, farmers, musicians (as Wagner), storytellers (as Boccaccio). Thanks to them the villa has many stories to tell.

The Landcommandery Alden Biesen (Belgium): the 16th-century castle is located in the small village of Rijkhoven in the municipality of Bilzen in the province of Limburg. The knights of the Teutonic Order originally founded the Landcommanderij Alden Biesen ("commandery of Alden Biesen") in the 11th century, but the current buildings were constructed between the 16th and 18th centuries. The castle was the headquarters of a bailiwick or province of the Teutonic Order in the region of the Maas and Rhine. On 8 March 1971 the complex burnt down and was acquired by the government. The buildings were restored and transformed into an international cultural center, that today hosts a museum related to the Teutonic Order, an artistic collection, a library international and organizes conferences, art exhibitions and cultural events.

The Hunyad Castle (Transylvania, Romania): the 14th century castle, also known as Corvin Castle or Hunedoara Castle, is located on a rock above the small Zlaști River in Hunedoara, in the region of Transylvania. The castle was built by King Charles I of Hungary over the site of an older Roman fortification. In 1409 it was given as severance to John Hunyadi's father, by Sigismund, king of Hungary. The castle was rebuilt between 1441 and 1453. After the death of John, the castle passed to his son Matthias (Corvinus) who enlarged it combining Gothic and Renaissance styles.
After a severe destruction in 1854 and many years of neglect, the castle was restored even if many original elements have been destroyed. Today the castle is a large and imposing building with tall and diversely colored roofs, towers and myriad windows and balconies adorned with stone carvings. It has been transformed into a museum, which exhibits archeological findings, ancient books, decorative arts and arms. It also hosts temporary exhibitions and concerts.
The castle is often associated to the Count Dracula and it is believed that it inspired the book by Bram Staoker.

The main idea on which the project is based is to launch one international ideas competition for young digital artists and one international contest for young storytellers.


For further information and updating: www.e-darts.eu