Oittinen – EUro(pe)
HISTORIES, IMAGES AND EUROPEANS

I am currently doing research on representations of Europe. My project on Histories, Images and Europeans deals with definitions and representations of Europe and uses of history in the making of identities.

I am looking the ideas of
Europeanness from above, below and sideways. I deal with the use of history/past on all its levels: from individual belonging to supranational identity building.

European identity, European flag

EURO-PR & POPULARISATION OF EUROPEAN HISTORY
  • Cosmopolitan versus Nationalist Vision: Rem Koolhaas’ Exhibition the Image of Europe. In Matthew Rampley (ed.) Heritage, Ideology, Identity in Central and Eastern Europe. Contested Pasts, Contested Presents, Boydell & Brewer 2012, pp. 175-194.
  • Valokuvaus, identiteetit ja eurospottaus, Tiedetoimittaja 2011:3, 14-15. (Lataa PDF).
  • In Hoc Signo Vinces. Eurosigns in the City Scenery of Brussels. In Frank Eckardt (ed.) Media and Urban Space. Understanding, Investigating and Approaching Mediacity, Frank & Timme GmbH, Verlag für wissenschaftliche Literatur: Berlin 2008, pp. 201-231. (Also available throught Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, Working Paper Series online)
  • Tämä on meidän historiamme. Eurokansalaiskasvatusta historianäyttelyssä. Kasvatus & Aika 2008:1
  • Euro-PR ja katseita menneisyyteen. Ennen ja nyt 2007:1
  • Manneken Pis suomipoikana ja maailmankansalaisena. In Maria Lähteenmäki & Minna Aalto (toim.): Identiteetit liikkeessä. Suomalaisten kokemuksia Belgiassa. Siirtolaisinstituutti: Turku 2007, 11-27 (PDF)
  • Historiapolitiikkaa pikakelauksella. Rem Koolhlaas eurosirkustelttailemassa. Historiallinen aikakauskirja 2005:3, 269-279 (PDF)

EUROSIGNS: BRANDING EURO(PE) FROM ABOVE, BELOW AND SIDEWAYS

The Eurosigns photo project (2004) analyses the individual meanings and the overall impact of Europe/European Union related representations. Eurosigns are business signs, advertisements, logos, hoardings, window displays and such that make use of institutional symbols of the European Union. The focus is on how SMEs link the idea of Europe either verbally or visually to their marketing.

A eurosign may include a modification of the blue flag of European union with its twelve golden stars (the eurostars), the map of Europe with EU member states highlighted, the attribute "eur(o)" or the letter €, or some other visual element endorsed by the EU. Some pictures have also been collected to give a backdrop to eurobranding.

The project uses photographs by myself and a multinational group of over 70 volunteer eurosignspotters to dissect the concept of Europe. Eurosignspotters have used mobile phones as well as cameras; cars, trains, and even planes have been used to catch the subject. At the moment the collection contains 1000+ documentary photographs. The work goes on!

The methodology of my study draws on histories from below, urban studies and the ethnographic tradition. I would call my approach modern urban archaeology, too, because it caracterises the interdisciplinary nature of my attempt to put together a mosaic of urban values. This approach addresses questions about how people fashion their environments to create meanings about who and where they are in the world, and how, in the process, they communicate feelings of belonging and attachment.






EUROSIGNS AROUND THE WORLD

Go here to see a selection of photos taken by the international and interdisciplinary team of voluntary eurosignspotters.


cecily, the russian gourmet shop, portland 2010

Cecilys's set from the Euro Classic Furniture Store in flickr.


European identity
parikka, europe 2005-2009

Raimos's set in flickr.


EUROSIGNS IN BRUSSELS

The Brussels' eurosigns are a case of their own. For more information go to
Eurosigns in Brussels.




PROJECT PRESENTED AT
PRESS / MEDIA

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