Heritage Contact Zone

Heritage Contact Zone (HCZ) works with contested heritage. The consortium of organizations from Germany, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, The Netherlands, Belgium and Romania  present a sample of the neglected or contested heritages that the project focuses on.

Point of departure is the notion that European history is as much a history of shared cultural accomplishment as it is a history of violence, – violence of wars, colonisation, totalitarian and imperial regimes, religious violence, economic violence leading to social injustice, racial violence and generally the suppression of ‘others’. Only by recognition of all aspects of history also that of conflict and dissent, and by actively engaging with those citizens that still suffer exclusion because of this history being marginalised in mainstream heritage representation, Europe will be able to transgress its impasse and move forward towards more unity. Cultural mediators and artists play a key role in this project to open up current heritage structures as ‚contact zones‘ towards more inclusive narratives.

In the two years of the project (September 2018 – August 2020) HCZ has realised 5 local exhibitions, co-curated with citizens, building bottom-up heritage representation and ‘new’ approaches and narratives for the organisations involved. It then looked at other examples of innovative and inclusive heritage representation, using heritage as a space for dialogue and constructive conflict and publish them in a comparative overview. In a series of workshops across Europe divers methodologies have been tested. Outcomes are bundled in the Heritage Contact Zone Toolkit.

Please visit the project website for more information about the project, the toolkit and events: