ICHCAP Publishes Fifty Videos on Central Asian ICH Online

Weaving tush-kiyiz, traditional wall carpets © ICHCAP

From 2015 to 2016, ICHCAP executed a project for ICH video production in Central Asia with four Central Asian countries and Mongolia. As a result of the project, fifty videos were produced and are now available on ICHCAP’s e-Knowledge Center. About one hundred ICH photos collected or shot during the project have also been published on the online site.

Nowruz (also spelled Navruz) is one of the most celebrated holidays in the Middle East and Central Asia. In 2009, it was inscribed on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity with seven countries sharing this tradition. Since some of the countries celebrating Nowruz became States Party to the Convention in 2016, the nomination was reintroduced on behalf of twelve States Party. The videos present the way the holiday is celebrated in Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.

The videos also show shagai, a traditional Mongolian game that uses sheep ankle bones, and asyk, a traditional Kazakh play that uses sheep or goat ankle bones. It is interesting to see the distinctive yet similar ICH of the four Central Asian countries and Mongolia through the videos.

The videos and photos were previously showcased during the twelfth Session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (December 2017, Jeju) and during the eighth Central Asia Sub-regional Network Meeting on the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage (July 2017, Kyrgyzstan).

In this fast-changing world, ICHCAP has been paying attention to the importance of documentation, which enables us to track changes and developments in ICH. Producing quality videos that increase visibility of ICH is regarded especially important in safeguarding ICH.

Video is an effective medium to capture ICH through advanced technologies and a powerful communication tool. ICHCAP will continue its ICH documentation projects in the Asia-Pacific region for the next ten years by expanding the scope from Central Asia and Mongolia to Southeast Asia, Southwest Asia, and the Pacific.