Nomadic Mongolia – 2022 Grand festival of intangible cultural heritage

Nomadic Mongolia-2022 © Ulanbator, Montsame

‘Nomadic Mongolia – 2022′ Grand festival of intangible cultural heritage was held on August 12-14, 2022 at the Gorkhi-Terelj National Park with the aim of promote 362 elements of intangible cultural heritage, attracting more than 20,000 foreign and Mongolian tourists. The festival was participated by 1,227 intangible cultural heritage practitioners from nine districts of the capital city and 21 provinces. In addition, several activities were held, such as competitions, creative cultural industry, trade fairs, dairy products, traditional cuisine fairs, and art performances by the practitioners of national intangible cultural heritage and children.

During the festival, folk art performances and exhibitions of crafts were organized by practitioners from 21 provinces and the capital city. In addition, the festivalgoers were given the opportunity to dive deeper into the traditional Mongolian household techniques such as felt making, fermenting mare’s milk, processing leather, etc. Also, the festival aimed to promote the methods of conserving nature which is used by the nomads.

In the frame of the festival, the practitioners of intangible cultural heritage who make a valuable contribution to preserving the intangible cultural heritage, developing talents, and promoting and disseminating it to the public were awarded. Five provinces, such as Khuvsgul, Hovd, Dornogovi, Dundgovi, and Umnogovi, have been selected with the best practices in safeguarding, transmission, dissemination, and promoting of ICH.

Furthermore, within the framework of the festival, the Ministry of Culture, Government implementing agency Culture and Arts Authority, National Center for Cultural Heritage, Cultural Heritage Network, Communications Council NGO, ICHCAP-ICHLinks project jointly organized the “Intangible Cultural Heritage through Children’s Eyes” online content contest with aims to:

– Promote ICH through online content and spread knowledge
– Discover young content creators of ICH among teenagers, and support creative ideas,
– To develop leadership among peers.

However, the Festival was announced in a short period of time after 2-3 years of restriction due to the pandemic COVID 19; the whole nation showed a full commitment to the safeguarding and future development of ICH. It was a nationwide celebration of pride and culture.

In his remarks delivered at the festival’s closing ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister of Mongolia S.Amarsaikhan said, “The main basis for the survival and national identity of any country or ethnic group is its heritage and culture. We, Mongolians, have more than 20 ethnic groups. At a time when the world is looking for ways to integrate Sustainable Development in all areas and efforts are being made to protect biological and cultural diversity, protecting the indigenous culture of the nomads, recognizing and passing on the heritage of the ethnic groups is the first priority not only for us Mongolians but also for mankind. This year’s ‘Nomadic Mongolia’ festival has expanded in terms of its scope from the previous festivals and ended up being more unique and innovative in terms of content, form, and organization. In the future, we will implement programs and projects aimed at preserving, promoting, and passing on our nomadic heritage, supporting and encouraging cultural heritage inheritors, improving universal cultural heritage education, and increasing the contribution of creative production based on cultural heritage to society and the economy”.

We do hope this festival will expand and celebrate its reach to the international level and spread and promote the intangible cultural heritage of humanity on a large scale.