Connect Archives
Jun 22, 2017 · 5 min read

A large part of cinematographic production — experiments, documentaries, applied genres that by today lost their functionality, etc. — is still waiting for a new discovery. With the dissolution of the hierarchy of film genres such works appear in a new light. Comparative international approaches disclose their new aspects as far as form and content is concerned. They get included in contemporary social and artistic contexts and become relevant in a new way. This process of re-selection can be facilitated by curatorial work and the workshop of Cinemathéque as well as digitalization providing an easier access. Via the new technologies, these „revitalized” works can be distributed digitally, and the same goes for amateur works or films made in obsolete projection formats. Digital technology is democratic and optimally leads to the elimination of the distinctions between official-professional and underground-amateur film making, creating a new conception of a unified cinematography.

The SCENESOR Project aims at creating a network of professionals from a variety of cultural fields and practices (ie. social sciences, education, art and IT) within the Central and Eastern-European region with the goal of recontextualizing and thus reproposing for contemporary research national audiovisual cultural heritages; it proceeds through interconnecting archives that collect such material and initiates and encourages networked, interdisciplinary workshop- and community development activities.

Omnipresent digitalization, supported by certain cultural heritage policies both on the European and national level, besides its merits, has contributed to making certain contents inaccessible or obscure, in many cases shadowed important facets of cultural production. Our aim is to induce a change of approach in this field. This work has already started with audiovisual collections of the ex-Yugoslav countries.

The Yugoslav film and audiovisual heritage and its still available hidden networks, especially the Kinoklub culture, are a good basis for elaborating new methods of creating networks for contemporary re-contextualisation and dissemination of audiovisual content. During the past decades the ex-Yugoslav countries developed their own national film canons; however, certain aspects of these canons also refer to the supranational context in which the films had been made. The shared linguistic space in which the digital archival databases are being developed makes the interlinking of their content easier and suitable for researching new models for context based archiving. It also gives the opportunity to develop a platform which would be in line with, or shaped according to, contemporary practices of integrated, networked communication. The integration of ex-Yugoslav archives with other Central- and Eastern-European collections and archives will not only broaden their present contexts but also develop new ways of thinking about the cross references in social-studies and practices, educational, contemporary artistic, curatorial, film literacy, anthropology and academic aspects as well as endorse new comparative ideas of European canons.

SCENESOR has grown out of the Connect Archives Initiative.

Connect Archives Initiative — CAI is an international research forum and digital film library development lab created within a framework of film and audiovisual archives, collections, cinematheques, mediatheques, IT developers and freelance experts around Middle and East Europe. Our goal is to establish a method to process the information and media content of the participating archives, and to provide a platform to make their collections accessible and visible in various formats — through workshops, exhibitions, film programs and publications, — as well as to enhance easier online searchability and availability.

SCENESOR Project Plan

CAI partner collections have been implementing an existing web catalogue and platform system /Mnéme System/ for their audio-visual and textual contents. The system will be further developed as a tool for SCENESOR Project to interconnect member’s sites via the inclusion of cross-reference options between the catalogued items. The goal is to create a central cloud-based database to interlink member’s data at a deep level. The combined database will be accessible via the SCENESOR HUB page with a cross-collection search engine and interactive social tools based on the monitored needs of the SCENESOR project and its users (see footnote 1).

Beyond the development of the SCENESOR HUB page digital platform and database, the initiative aims to offer a broad array of cultural activities closely connected to the archives participating in the SCENESOR Project. These activities can provide potential contextual use of the databases and the films, and represent a much needed hub for social- studies and practices, educational, contemporary artistic, curatorial, anthropology and academic aspects as well as educating cinema audiences and enhancing media literacy in general.

Besides strengthening cultural and scientific contexts and communities, an emphatic goal of the project is the development of a discursive methodology based on well structured audiovisual content which will enchance the activity of real (as opposed to virtual) communities and of their networks, in terms of democratisation.

In the first phase, the final project plan will be formulated and scheduled, in the framework of workshops, symposia and exchanges of curated film programs. The applications for funding the project will be built on that project plan.

Due to the European dimension of the project, EU funding programs for the media industry (MEDIA), the cultural sector (Creative Europe/Culture) and research and development (Horizon 2020) as well as other regional European funds are natural destinations. Additional funding options are being researched.

Our aim is to unify and consolidate the international activities of the participating experts, organisations and content holders.

At present, we are looking for supporters and partners to create the financial and infrastructural framework for the project.


Petra Belc
advisor in Content Development

Natalie Gravenor
advisor in Content Management and Fundraising

Bálint Csöllei
advisor in Product Design and Data Management

Sebestyén Kodolányi
advisor in Project and Content Management

Rodrigo Balogh — Independent Theater Hungary
advisor in drama-pedagogue, training and society practices

2017. 06. 22.

1., Providing online access to digital copies of film and video works can be a challenging task for archives in regards to possible copyright constraints or ambiguities. To deal with these obstacles while providing broad access to audio-visual materials as much as possible, Mnémé System offers multi-level access control to digital video assets. These options can be set by the archive managers for each film via the backend interface.

Mnémé System with its existing and planned media access control features helping SCENESOR project participant collections to handle their copyright, digital distribution and online monetisation questions. Mnémé System does not seek to get copy and/or distribution rights on the content. The research, educational, curatorial and social practice activities of the SCENESOR project applies only previously cleared contents with the right holders.

Connect Archives

Connect Archives is an international research platform and digital film library development lab created within a framework of film and audiovisual archives, collections, cinematheques, mediatheques, IT developers and freelance experts around Europe.

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