Friday, 1 August 2014

Cultural Heritage On The Road: The Caravanserais Of Turkey

Spreading throughout the Islamic world on a vast geographic and temporal scale, wayside caravanserais have faithfully sheltered travellers and traders for many centuries. The impressive diffusion of this institution and its characteristics clearly shows that caravanserais fulfilled a key role in society, in relation both to the physical act of travelling and to the notion of travel as the expression of cultural values.
As regards to caravanserais, Turkey can claim one of the richest heritages all over the world. Several caravanserais were founded in Turkey from the beginning of Seljuk period until the end of the Ottoman Empire, and hundreds of them are still preserved today.
The workshop will consider road caravanserais both from an architectural and historical – archaeological point of view. In fact, to achieve a comprehensive sense of caravanserais as cultural heritage, it is paramount to explore issues of conservation and restoration in deep connection with the analysis of the cultural and historical context these edifices were built in.
The main aim of the workshop is to promote new dialogue and create an inspiring framework for scholars, students and professional interested in caravanserais and the issues related to their preservation and reuse. This workshop will represent a fundamental assessment for the research on caravanserais and it also aspires at providing directions and ideas for future research as well as for a comprehensive and sustainable management of the cultural heritage represented by caravanserais.

General Schedule
The workshop is intended to last five days. We envision having seminar lectures, field-trips, and team project work. The seminar lectures will include topics dealing with the history and archaeology of the caravanserais as well as issues related to the restoration and conservation and reuse of the buildings. A lecture on the use of 3D modelling for cultural heritage is also scheduled. A full day will be spent on a field-trip to a caravanserai near Kayseri. The field-trip is intended to provide first-hand information and data for further discussion on the issues of restoration and conservation.
The workshop is intended both to outline the importance of the cultural and historical context for the architectural project of restoration and to provide students with direct experience on real cases as well as debates and discussions with experienced professionals. The workshop is intended mainly for graduate students. Researchers and professionals are also welcomed. The workshop will be held in English.

Attendance is free but participants must register in advance, as places are limited. To register to the workshop, please send an e-mail including a brief curriculum to the following address before 15 September 2014. Late registrations will not be considered and places are limited (25 students max.) Some accommodation and/or travel scholarship could be available in order to ease students’ participation to the workshop.

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