Oral History – Stories at the Museum around Artworks (OH-SMArt) is a long term initiative to significantly improve the digital research chain around using Oral History and spoken narratives, with research into artworks and museums as a use case.
Holding unique audiovisual recordings about artworks in their archives, museums have a severe backlog in disclosing and sharing this information, because of the laborious workflow of storing and transcribing, the sensitivity of some of the material, and the lack of tools to use and reflect upon the content. These are generic problems for all researchers engaging with spoken narratives. An improved and user friendly deposition workflow that automatically connects to an automatic speech transcription service will resolve a significant part of this problem. Additionally, the improved workflow enables the development of new tools that especially aim at facilitating reflection by contextualizing the source material with layers of user interpretations, placing the researcher’s viewpoint into perspective. Opening up the behind the scenes of museums in a smart way, OH-SMArt advances research with spoken narratives around artworks and contributes to existing digital research infrastructures with domain-wide applications for knowledge development.