Europa Nostra participates in international workshop on Armenian Cultural Heritage in Tsaghkunk, Armenia
The workshop ‘Armenian Cultural Heritage: Identification, Documentation, Handling’ took place from 26-28 October 2023 in Tsaghkunk, Armenia. It brought together the young generation of local Armenian and international stakeholders, academics, experts from local governmental institutions, Europa Nostra, UNESCO and The Blue Shield to discuss the existing concept of identification, documentation and management of Armenian cultural heritage. Arch. Gaianè Casnati, Council member of Europa Nostra, and Dr. Stavroula Thravalou representing the Europa Nostra Heritage Hub in Athens managed by Elliniki Etairia, took part in workshop.
The participants highlighted the need for reconsidering the post-Soviet concept of cultural heritage in the Republic of Armenia, especially with regard to archiving, digitisation and creation of databases, according to the latest research and practical approaches, but also the international agreements, declarations and conventions.
The experts from Europa Nostra had an active participation in the discussions by sharing with other participants many examples from the European practice and from the experience gained in Armenia through the implementation of projects awarded the European Heritage Awards / Europa Nostra Awards, namely ‘Preserving cultural heritage in Armenia’ (2015) and ‘Scientific-Archaeological Studies for the Preservation of Ererouyk (2023).
The outcomes of the workshops include the Tsaghkunk Declaration on Armenian Cultural Heritage Identification, Documentation and Handling. The Declaration invites local authorities and scholars to rethink the concepts of cultural heritage, cultural goods and cultural property, which are extremely relevant at a moment when Armenian cultural heritage is under threat, particularly after the armed conflict carried out by Azerbaijan on the territory of Karabakh and the recent forcible displacement of the entire Armenian population of Karabakh from the ancestral settlement area.