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Cultural Week attracts international experts to Georgia

By Salome Modebadze
Wednesday, November 17
The Cultural Heritage Preservation, Research and Presentation week with leading museums’ experts was officially opened at the Georgian National Museum (GNM) on November 16. According to information released by Davit Lortkipanidze, the General Director of the GNM the project comprises three different branches: a two-year Twinning project “Support for the Institutional Development of the Georgian National Museum” with the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation and the German National Museum in Berlin funded by the European Union (EU); preparation of medieval exhibitions with the Metropolitan Museum of Art funded by UNESCO and conservation-preservation processes for the well-researched Dzalisa (Georgia) Archeological site with support of Italian colleagues.

Talking on the importance of multilateral cooperation with world renowned professionals in their fields Lortkipanidze hoped that the GNM with its wide range of unique collections will become a modern institution with international support in the fields of research, conservation and restoration. Renovations of part of the GNM have been finished. Museums, according to Lortkipanidze should have an important role in the development process of the country.

“We already have the first results with the bronze materials – the project started in the Metropolitan Museum further continued in the Getty centre. I think we should keep this trend among our main priorities. We hope to achieve results important both for science and society,” Lortkipanidze told the audience. “Cooperation between the public and private sectors has been successful in Georgia. We don’t stop but continue moving forward!” he said thanking all the partner institutions for their interest in the GNM.

Expressing their approaches towards the cultural heritage week in Georgia the experts from the three leading societies shared their plans with the audience. Stefan Simon, Director of the Rathgen Research Laboratory at the National Museum in Berlin welcomed the mutual exchange of experience. Welcoming the preservation of cultural heritage for future generations through cooperation Simon spoke of the language of cultural heritage as a universal language. “This is why I’m so proud to be the part of this week – it helps to bring together the large challenges and encourages us to overcome them together,” stated Simon.

Encouraging the audience that not everyone in the world is aware of Byzantine culture, Helen Evans, Curator of Byzantine Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art expressed her readiness to introduce the Georgian medieval art samples to the rest of the world with her experienced team. “I’ve been coming to Georgia from the 1990s so I can see how the GNM has changed during all these years. Georgia has an amazing collection of things excavated from various sites. Now we are here to discuss and advise in any ways that will be useful to Georgian funds,” Evans told The Messenger.

Annalisa Zarattini from the Ministry of Cultural Heritage of Italy spoke of the importance of collaboration with Georgian scolars for “big results from an incredible place for studies”. According to Ms. Zarattini, the Dzalisa site with its amazing symbols of wine making history in Georgia will need some time for the appropriate studies before its official introduction to the world.

All interested visitors have a wonderful opportunity to attend the brief conferences of foreign guests and participate in a trip to Dzalisa with the Georgian National Museum as part of the Cultural Heritage Preservation, Research and Presentation week.