CultPlatForm_21 Danube Culture Platform - Creative Spaces of the 21st Century

Future Book

The Future Book of the CultPlatForm_21 project compiles the results of implemented pilot projects and the look into future development of meaningful and effective cultural touristic use. Lessons learned through the Policy Learning Platform, research and through pilot project implementation give valuable insights into possibilities of future development.

The experiences of all partners that engaged in research and pilot implementation are thoroughly described in various forms of project documentation, visualisations reports, action plans and action diaries. The outlook into the future, however, is presented in the Future Book and it is based on research, experiences in implementation and on realistic plans for future development.

CultPlatForm Reflections



Pilot project of the federal chancellery of austria (LP)

Tagging Hidden Architecture Jewels


Based on past experiments during the ‘Cargo’-Trip along the Danube in 2014, the concept of Austrian artist Rainer Prohaska aimed at accentuating imposing but little- known, hidden architectural sites on the riverside at the Danube sector between Bratislava and Medveďov, found during his journey from Melk to Sulina.
The artist’s focus was on historic industrial architecture and historic and contemporary architecture demanded by river and shipping needs like outstanding power plants, locks, harbours, ferries and permanently moored ships. Accentuation was done with the ‘Orange Line Method’, which Prohaska used for the first and last time to ‘tag’ the Albertina museum in Vienna in May 2015. This temporary ‘textile graffiti’ does not violate buildings or constructions. Once the intervention is documented, it is up to the artist and permission of the owners whether the orange strips stay or are removed.

copyright: Rainer Prohaska

Tagging hidden architecture jewels


Relevance/ connectedness to the topic of Danube hidden heritage

For the project series “Tagging Hidden Architecture Jewels” which took place between September and November 2018, Prohaska developed site-specific artworks for the river banks and

the spaces around them. The artist chose following hidden heritage hotspots in the region of  Bratislava:

• Jarovecké Rameno

• Vodné dielo Čunovo

• Vodné dielo Gabčíkovo

• Sústava vodných diel Gabčíkovo

The typical ‘Orange Line & Zone’ method that the artist used to ‘tag’ architecture and objects was used to make the hidden areas of Jarovecké, Čunovo and Gabčíkovo visible.


Potentials for further development and connecting with cultural routes

The Danube Culture Platform developed an “Interpretation Framework for Cultural Routes Based on Hidden Heritage in the Danube Region”. This approach explores a “bigger picture” and sees  hidden heritage as an interdisciplinary field contributing to the development of new narratives. The hidden heritage sites chosen contribute to the topics of the Interpretation Framework e.g. “Cultural heritage and its legacy” and “difficult pasts”, “Power and Control” and “the Iron Curtain”, “Trade and Commerce” and “Stability and Economic Prosperity”.



pilot project of the : Upper Austria Cultural Quarter (PP1)

Hidden Roman heritage in Upper Austria

A number of Roman encampments were situated in Upper Austria in the Roman times. However, most of the remains from that era are covered with newer structures: houses, churches, hotels and other permanent constructions of which some also represent heritage from some later era. For that reason, the partners from Upper Austria opted for underground scanning in order to determine the exact size, shape and type of remains. The results were expertly researched and than presented using advanced 3D visualisations for different hidden historical sites.

A series of 6 stereoscopes was set up on particular spots in Upper Austria along the Upper Austrian Danube Limes, to reveal hidden heritage not as remains, but as digital representations of constructions in Roman times.

The sites that are presented are:

- the Legion camp Lauriacum / Enns, with 3 stereoscopes showing a recreation of the camp with the V-shaped ditch, the impressive wall and towers, and the twelve ovens of the largest known lime kiln battery formation of the Imperium Romanum

- The Roman burgus in Oberranna with its four towers, located on barely inhabited countryside around Engelhartszell (next to the Danube cycling path)

- the Danube river bend in Schlögen holding a smaller castrum with some civilian dwellings nearby and a bath facility right next to a passing street, some trade and military ships from the era are shown floating along the Danube


copyright: @7reasons


Relevance/ connectedness to the topic of Danube hidden heritage

The history of the Roman empire is an important part of the Danube region. The Danube (Danubius) formed the natural boarder, the limes, of the Roman Empire, the river presented a boundary, but also a water-way that connected people, commerce and cultures. These connecting and dividing qualities of the river remain relevant to this day. The vital importance and connecting qualities of Roman culture as one of the corner stones of cultures in the Danube region today is mostly obscured by new influences that came in subsequent times. The uncovering of hidden Roman heritage helps us understand our cultures and the connections to one another.


Potentials for further development and connecting with cultural routes

Tourism is an important part of Austria’s economy, making around 9% of nations GDP. Upper Austria is, however, predominantly an industrial region, but tourism in Upper Austria is on the rise with 2.937.303 arrivals in the season 2016/2017, representing a 5% increase compared to the previous year. A number of factors contribute to this increase: the well-developed information network, a large number of public events that are well marketed and attract a number of visitors and there is a consistent system of financing public institutions that provide information and marketing, as well as new initiatives.

These new initiatives include connecting various heritage sites to cultural routes, or itineraries, like the Roman Emperors Route and the Danube Wine Route, which is enabled through the high standards of presentation of cultural heritage as a touristic product.



pilot project of Upper Austria Culture Quarter (PP1), Ministry of Science, Research and Art of Baden-Württemberg (PP2), Ministry of Culture of Bulgaria (PP4), Academy of Arts, University of Novi Sad (ASP1)


Studio DAHD (Studio for Danube Artistic Heritage Development)


The concept for the Studio DAHD collaborative project was developed by Prof. Dr. Elisabeth Schweeger and Prof. Dr. Sabine Pollak, who acted as mentors in the development of the project, along with Prof. Dr. Dubravka Lazić and Mag. Nadezhda Pavlova. Each of the partners in this coordinated pilot project have appointed a partner university, or a group of students led by mentors from Germany, Austria, Bulgaria and Serbia, that implemented the research and the pilot projects in collaboration with each other.

The diversity of the projects, as well as topics and issues that students addressed, was presented in joint exhibitions titled “River in Transition” that opened in Bulgaria (Ruse), Serbia (Novi Sad), Germany (Ludwigsburg) and Austria (Linz) in the period from May to November 2019.

The exhibition reflects the research on the issues of the Danube and its transformations (past or hidden stories, narratives, realities and conditions /future perspectives, urban development, nature /faun a/flora, climate, transport /commercial development, migration, tourism, bridges...), seen through the eyes of a transnational team of students.

copyright: Denislav Stoychev


Relevance/ connectedness to the topic of Danube hidden heritage

The students researched various issues related to the life along the river, how it is transformed, how connections are made and what are the possible future directions of development. They focused on bridges (and the lack there of), river banks and landmarks, but also on intangible heritage like legends, stories, music and literature. The hidden heritage they uncovered is both tangible and intangible.


Potentials for further development and connecting with cultural routes

The Studio DAHD project provided artistic renderings of various heritage topics. Most of all, it provided bases for storytelling that is seen as the most attractive feature of any cultural-touristic product. These stories could be implemented in a number of existing cultural routes, but one of them is the potential basis of a new and exciting cultural route – the route of unconventional museums, or the route of unconventional paths.

It will be very important in the future to offer visitors sights that are different in type to those that are usually offered, like large national museums and well-known cultural sites. The authentic, local sites prepared with a lot of personal passion and in/depth understanding of a topic could be just what a more curious tourist would like to see.



pilot project of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, Romania (PP3)

Art festival dedicated to the invisible heritage


The pilot project in Romania consisted in the organization of an Art festival dedicated to the hidden heritage. Ada Kaleh citadel from Drobeta Turnu Severin was selected as a symbol of the invisible heritage in Romania that must be revealed and capitalized.

The art festival brought together specialists in the field of culture, teachers and students interested in the theme of the festival touching upon the following: urban heritage recovery with augmented reality, cultural heritage and new media, collective documenting and preservation in the online space of intangible cultural heritage, interactive digital performance , the use of animation film, but also the reconversion of space through artistic approaches.

The participants also enjoyed a guided visit to the Anghel Saligny Bridge and the Carsium Citadel in Hârşova, other invisible heritage items selected for promotion within the project.

Art Festival Ada Kaleh

Relevance/ connectedness to the topic of Danube hidden heritage

The island of Ada Kaleh is probably the most evocative collateral damage of the construction of Iron Gates hydropower system. The island was only 3 km downstream from the shore of Orșova and was submerged in 1971 into the Danube. The island was known for its great beauty, sub-Mediterranean vegetation and a great community. The topic of Ada Kaleh island and citadel has great potential for interpretation, being rich in history and meaning. Also, the entire area of Drobeta-Turnu Severin and Orsova cities is very interesting due to a large concentration of historical monuments of different categories (military, civil, religious, vernacular, customs) and from different historical periods which are also relevant for the identity of the countries tangent to the Danube: one of the oldest European settlements of 7000 B.C. (Schela Cladovei Culture); The Roman Empire (Foot of Trajan and Roman Castrum); Tricule Citadel - partially submerged, built to stop the invasion of the Ottoman Empire.


Potentials for further development and connecting with cultural routes

The lost island of Ada Kaleh has the great potential to be promoted as it has a very unique story regarding the process of sinking into the Danube and relocation during the communism period.

ATRIUM, a route focusing on the Architecture of Totalitarian Regimes which characterized much of 20th Century Europe by drastically changing urban landscape through bold interventions, is one cultural route which has great potential to integrate the citadel Ada Kaleh and its wonderful story.

pilot projects of the Ministry of Tourism of the Republic of Bulgaria (PP5)

Discover the hidden heritage in Vidin


The pilot project aims to promote less known cultural and historical sites along the Danube river in the city of Vidin incl. the Kaleto defensive system and the Synagogue. , by creating a computer 3D visualisation that is implemented into 4 information computer terminals (kiosks) and a guide system for tourists in the city of Vidin.

Four interactive information kiosk terminals have been delivered and installed in important cultural and touristic points in the city of Vidin where the pilot project is based. Two kiosks have been placed indoor in the Art Gallery “Nikola Petrov” and the Old Turkish post in Vidin. Two more kiosks have been placed outdoor of the important buildings of the Konaka Museum and the Baba Vida Fortress, part of the Kaleto defensive system.

Each kiosk is branded with information and brand elements of the project "Danube Culture Platform - Creative Spaces of the 21st Century". A computer 3D visualisation is implemented on the kiosk terminals together with videos & information for 16 sites in total in 5 languages – Bulgarian, English, German, Romanian and Serbian. Audio-guides with implemented audio information about the 16 cultural spots in the Danube region are available for tourists in 5 languages.

The information and videos on the kiosks can be seen on this link

Baba Vida Fortress

Relevance/ connectedness to the topic of Danube hidden heritage

As a partner in the "Danube Culture Platform - Creative Spaces of the 21st Century" project The Ministry of Tourism aims to support less known cultural and historical sites along the Danube river. The pilot project implementation aims to make the Danube region in Bulgaria more visible on transnational level. In particular, the city of Vidin will be better integrated in the Danube region. Making unknown sites more visible is expected to lead to greater tourist interest in the regions and thus more tourists to visit the region.

Potentials for further development and connecting with cultural routes

The pilot project “Discover the hidden heritage in Vidin” promotes some of the hidden sites of the city of Vidin and makes the Danube region in Bulgaria more visible on transnational level. Its cultural sites are to be evaluated and mapped and they can be included in new cultural routes in a next project.

Furthermore, the project addresses the PA 3 targets of EUSDR coordinated by the Bulgarian Ministry of Tourism, specifically the following target: “Develop new and support existing Cultural Routes relevant in the Danube Region”. As a coordinator, the Ministry will be able to transfer good practices and results of the projects to other stakeholders in EUSDR PA3.



pilot project of the city of regensburg (pp6)

DAL – Danube Art Lab


In the summer of 2017, the City of Regensburg (PP6) and the donumenta festival jointly launched the international Artist-in-Residency programme (Air) Danube Art Lab – a laboratory for contemporary art and culture in the Danube region. Adopting the theme “Hidden Places / Hidden Spaces”, the call addressed interdisciplinary artists who are well versed in working in public space. It was a crucial point to identify those with a demonstrable interest in temporary site-specific interventions. This very thematic focus provided the fundamental requirement for the AiR programme to work as a tool for the facilitation of history and, finally, to reveal what was hidden. By a shared interest in the same topic of cultural heritage, it also enables further cooperation with the cultural routes strategy.

In the Danube Art Lab, eleven artists developed new interpretations of the cultural legacy of the UNESCO World Heritage City of Regensburg. Coming from countries in the Danube region, they spent the summer and autumn of 2017 living in Regensburg, in order to explore the city and its spaces: from the remnants of the Roman period to monuments of the medieval town, all the way up to the 20th century and the present day. The artists’ creative interactions with the historic remains offer the audience a new gateway into the past and present of the city on the Danube. The aim is sensory perception, the creation of a holistic visitor experience and ultimately to shift perspectives.

An international panel selected eleven renowned artists, who realised their temporary art works in public space in Regensburg. Their contemporary approaches and concepts made the invisible visible. They opened a dialogue between Regensburg’s history and its inhabitants as well as tourists. The artistic interventions transformed hidden cultural heritage into creative places of the 21st century and created memorable experiences.


Relevance/ connectedness to the topic of Danube hidden heritage

We encounter powerful images, provocative interpretations, and surprising discoveries. Art’s outside perspective opens up a new portal to the historic legacy of our town. As an added bonus, many results of the Danube Art Lab confront us in the public space; thus art approaches people, rather than the other way around. This is important to us. Beyond the contributions of museum and art experts, however, such projects also require the involvement of monument conservation teams, construction engineers, and administrative staff. It is therefore an even greater personal pleasure that the collaboration of so many people finally enabled us to once more highlight Regensburg as a think tank and an anchorage for art in the Danube region.


Potentials for further development and connecting with cultural routes

By making the invisible visible through new technologies and the development of (new) narratives, new perspectives were opened up and (new) consciousness was developed. The methods of the pilot projects, using either artistic or digital intervention on the hidden and forgotten as tools for the contemporary interpretation of heritage, are best-practice examples that can be realised everywhere.

Regensburg initiated the idea for the establishment of an Artist-in-Residence platform for the Danube region to nourish future activities by using networks as a tool for lively and rapid discussion of experiences and knowledge. This strategy also offers best support for the short-term realisation of dense cultural networks and secures sustainable transferability.


pilot project of the Zsolnay Heritage Management Ltd. (pp7)

’See the invisible Sopianae’- Interactive Heritage Pedagogy App


The aim of developing the ”See the invisible Sopiane Heritage Pedagogy Interactive App” is to offer a complex experience to visitors via modern and innovative means. Namely, presenting visitors with the story of a fictional character from the Roman era, packed with relevant information which provide a background knowledge in understanding the Roman period and the early Christian cemetery sites of Pécs. The main scope of the App is ’teaching via play’, when visitors learn historical knowledge in a fun and educational manner.

See the Invisible Sopianae

Relevance/ connectedness to the topic of Danube hidden heritage

The Cella Septichora Visitor’s Centre despite the fact that it is already accessible and available for tourist still can be considered as one of the most exciting hidden heritage hot-spots of the city and the whole region. Our purpose with the pilot project was to attract a rich diversity of people through modern technology meaning different age groups, interests, cultural backgrounds. We believe that during the game people can fully discover the spot in a very playful way and make the hidden heritage visible for themselves. This kind of development especially in spots connected to the Roman era stands out in this part of the Danube Region.


Potentials for further development and connecting with cultural routes

In the next years, the main objectives of our development plans are outlined according to the complex development, of the Pécs World Heritage region, with respect to preserving unity with the developments of earlier and ongoing projects in the area. In line with the monument protection and architectural objectives, the content developments aim to conserve and introduce the World Heritage sites, in order to be able to present the archaeological heritage in the form of popular tourist attractions. Inside the Cella Septichora Visitor Centre, alongside the basic information and navigation, we would like to install interior visualization (AR reconstructions, animated objects) and interactive games on smart devices. The purpose of planning virtual interactive walk (Applications of Augmented Reality) in the future is to give a complex experience about what we can see with modern equipment. Namely that a real and a virtual space emerges and stratifies in front of the receiver, with full of relevant information, helping to interpret the historical monuments.

Our organization is currently working on another mobile APP “Sopiane Roman Walk” and joined The Roman Emperors and Danube Wine Route which offers multiple opportunities for further developments.



pilot project of the Danube Competence Center (IPA1)

revealing iron gates hidden heritage

Pilot project tackles the issue of presentation, interpretation and accessibility to two important cultural/touristic sites in the Serbian part of the Iron Gate region – Golubac fortress and Tabula Traiana. The fortress has been neglected and left without any presentation or proper access for tourists for decades. With EU funding the fortress has been restored and is living again. But physical renovation should be followed by the proper interpretation, especially in the sense of using digital tools; re-enactment of the history and exploring communication through contemporary arts about historic landmarks and spaces. Similar situation is with Tabula Traiana as well. Building of the Djerdap dam and destruction of the former Roman road prevented the land access to this hotspot for almost 17 centuries.   The action is exploring the way in which this hidden heritage hotspot can be easier accessed and presented to wider audiences.

Essentially, the pilot project of the IPA1 partner Danube Competence Center was implemented in 3 parts. The first part was the digital interactive application related to the Golubac fortress, which was installed at the fortress. The second part was an art exhibition done in cooperation with University of Arts, Center for Graphics an excellent example of linking contemporary arts and historic landmarks and spaces. The third part was the study on the possibility of forming access to the Tabula Traiana site, which is now inaccessible due to the Djerdap dam and hydro plant.

Hidden heritage at the Golubac Fortress

Relevance/ connectedness to the topic of Danube hidden heritage


Both locations identified as target of the pilot action were completely hidden from the public. The area was neglected for many years being part of the Iron Curtain and now seeing the development of cultural tourism as one of the important drivers of local economy. In that sense, the pilot project communicates with all major topics of the CultPlatForm_21 project: hidden heritage reveals, resourcing hidden heritage for tourism, identification and creation of new audiences and supporting dialogue and exchanges between cultural and tourism stakeholders.


Potentials for further development and connecting with cultural routes

With the great support of local partners, Tvrdjava Golubacki grad and National Park Djerdap, pilot project will become a catalyst for future development of the cultural and touristic offer of the region. Both partners are committed to continue the implementation of the interventions allocating human and financial resources. Bringing those locations to the public (estimation is that 60.000 new visitors will come to the region once locations are fully prepared) will increase the performance of the local economy and help better preservation of the hidden heritage sites in the Iron gate region.  Both sites can become easily part of the cultural routes program – Tabula Traiana is already part of the Roman Emperors and Danube Wine Route


Programme co-funded by European Union funds (ERDF, IPA, ENI)