The Heritage Jam



The Heritage Jam begun in 2014 under the direction of Dr. Masinton and Dr. Perry of the University of York as a way to bring people together to design and create forward-thinking pieces of heritage visualisation in a short space of time.

The Heritage Jam is open to anyone interested in the way heritage is visualised: we call to artists, animators, game designers, programmers, archaeologists, historians, conservators, museum professionals, heritage practitioners, and any interested members of the public to join forces and collaborate. The outcomes of the Jam are hugely varied – ranging from fine art pieces, 3D models and games through to stories, sketches and videos. The only limits on creation are the theme, time and your imagination!

The Rationale Behind the Jam

How the past is conceptualised – how it is presented graphically, acoustically, haptically, olfactorily, vocally, and in other performative capacities – has a significant impact upon people’s understanding of themselves and the world around them. It is fundamental to influencing the degree of importance that individuals and communities assign to their environment, and how they care for that environment in the present and build upon it in the future. The artistry and enquiry that are invested into this creative work have known effects not only on public perception but on the whole trajectory of heritage study and practice – from research to policy-making to protection and conservation. The Heritage Jam is about showcasing the presentation of the past, and drawing together the many people invested in such presentation.

The Heritage Jam draws inspiration from game-industry events such as Global Game Jam and Brains Eden as well as emerging academic jams such as the Science Jam. Ultimately, The Heritage Jam seeks to raise the profile of heritage visualisation as a global discipline, encouraging wider participation in its production and appreciation amongst the community.

We hope to engage participants from a multitude of different backgrounds, skillsets and interests to challenge how the practices and outcomes of how we visualise the past.

The Jam Participants

The Heritage Jam is open to anyone interested in the way heritage is visualised – whether this be for scholarly or entrepreneurial purposes, or for the joy of your own personal interest. Heritage enthusiasts have much to gain from the development of better and bolder visualisations, as do those creatives and technical experts who are developing their careers and their repertoire, and using heritage as a source of inspiration to expand their creative potential.

We call to artists, animators, designers, programmers, archaeologists, historians, conservators, museum professionals, heritage practitioners, other specialists, and any interested members of the public to work together in unique collaborative environments in both the online and offline worlds, joining forces, and sharing skills and ideas.

How the Jam Works

There is usually a particular ‘theme’ around which the participants of The Heritage Jam will be asked to create their visualisations, working concurrently with others around the globe, over the month of April.

The short time frame is intended to facilitate small, but achievable pieces, with the emphasis placed on ambition and experimentation, as opposed to polish and scale. We welcome submissions, at varying degrees or states of completion – from trial techniques, to prototype designs, through to fully-realised visualisations. Your work can be anything, in any medium: film, art, literature, comics, tourism, game development – the only limit to what you can can make is your imagination!


The Outcomes of the Jam

Prizes will be awarded for the top three entries in English, and top three in French. However the life of the Jam will continue beyond the event, with follow up articles and reflections published via our social media channels – so be sure to stay tuned!

Further to this, all online spaces will be archived and kept open over the next year, so that participants may continue to build upon their projects, networks or new working relationships.

More details on the Jam will be circulated to registrants, so please sign up via the link on this page. Otherwise, stay tuned for news, events and creative content from behind-the-scenes at The Heritage Jam through our social media feeds on Facebook and Twitter. We also have a Pinterest page, for any visual inspiration surrounding this years theme The Bones of Our Past. 

For more info on the Heritage Jam head over to our FAQ page, or if you are still unsure of somthing, please do not hesitate to get in contact with our administration team at:



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