National inventory revival of the traditional ceramics
Benefitting country(ies): Uzbekistan
Uzbek potters used special techniques for producing the famous bluecoloured glaze to decorate vessels and tiles. Many sacred monuments in the city of Samarkand, the ancient centre of this art, memorialize this century-old tradition.
The project aimed to revive the technique of producing the traditional plant-based glaze of the region for application in ceramic vessels and architectural restoration, and to support the potters working within the historical ceramic traditions of Central Asia. The project, which involved the making of a special kiln according to historical models, was successful in rediscovering the traditional technology employed to produce the type of blue-glazed kashin used in Timurid Samarkand. The process of preparing the clay and glaze was recorded on video. Based on the recommendations of experts at an international symposium in Samarkand (2002), UNESCO initiated a follow-up to the project, mainly to establish an inventory of the traditional ceramics of Central Asia and create a new folk potters association.