Promoting Heritage Crafts: Launch of EU-Financed Project
29 March, 2012
Promoting Heritage Crafts: Launch of EU-Financed Project

On March 22, in the premises of the Conference Hall of National Parliamentary Library of Georgia the Presentation and Launch of the project called Heritage Crafts – Common Platform for Development, Strengthening Creative Industries in Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan took place.   

 

The project is implemented by Georgian Arts and Culture Centre “Istoriali”, in cooperation with Europe House, Economic Affairs Office of Tbilisi City Hall and Georgian National Tourism Agency.

GACC aims to preserve, develop and promote Georgian cultural heritage; to strengthen the economic viability and self-sustainability of cultural institutions and museums, crafts performed in  small and medium businesses/enterprises and practiced by individual artists and artisans; to stimulate Georgian Cultural studies and educational activities; GACC works to develop, promote and market Georgian national arts and crafts; works to establish and increase the international art relations and cultural exchanges, provides exhibition activities.

The project comprises research, educational, network cooperation and network unification components. Within the framework of the project, various trainings and workshops will be held in marketing development as well as in producing the market-oriented output for crafts organizations as well as for craftsmen. General network of the representatives of the heritage crafts of the participant countries will be created and necessary measures will be made for its popularization and integration into the European space.

The project is financed by the European Union under the Eastern Partnership culture Programme covering the six countries of the Eastern Partnership (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine). The Eastern Partnership Culture Program contributes to the increasing of the role of culture as a vector for sustainable social and economic development of the countries and the Eastern Partnership Culture Program, with a total budget of Eu12 million, acts on the implementation of its objectives through financing up to 80% of the budgets of 15 regional culture projects and by providing capacity building to culture actors from national/local authorities and civil society institutions through its Regional monitoring and Capacity Building Unit.

Oliver Reisner, Project Manager of Civil Society, Higher Education, Culture, social and Labour Affairs of the European Union summed up the presentation specially for Georgian Journal: “The public opening of the project was organized long before. It is of utmost importance to cooperate on the political levels in order to develop culture as a sector. Second, preserving the traditions of cultural heritage not only in Georgia but also in Armenia and Azerbaijan, sharing national experience in-between, and third most important thing is that culture is the means of using and developing human resources.”

Marine Mizandari from Europe House said: “We will cooperate with the project at all its levels, as it contains a number of aspects, as well as in preparing seminars and workshops and sharing experience of European experts. We will actively participate in networking not only among the South Caucasian countries but also with the European countries.”

Out of fifteen projects that are being implemented under the Eastern Partnership culture programme of the European Union, 12 are being implemented in Georgia. “The project implies regulating of registration of craftsmen on the one hand in the sphere of the traditional crafts, and on the other hand, to insure the high quality of the production, which means that these people need relevant qualification and markets for realization. We’ll be involved in creating the database and also actively participate in the process of the popularization of the national hand-made things, as well as organize various exhibitions and insure the successful craftsmen to go abroad – share foreign experience and financially support them and later, help them to sell their production in Georgia,” Zviad Archuadze, Head of the Economic Affairs Office at Tbilisi City Hall commented.

"This project will last for two years. Our center has been working for the promotion and development of Georgian art for the last 16 years, since its very existence, " - Maka Dvalishvili, Director of Georgian Arts and Culture Center noted.