Sok An (1950 – 2017)

April 18, 2017

HE Sok An
Photo: Pedro França / Ministério da Cultura do Brasil (cc-by-2.0)

ICCROM joins the Cambodian people and all lovers of heritage in mourning the loss of the Cambodian Vice Prime Minister Samdech Vibol Panha Sok An, who died on 15 March 2017.  He was 67 years old.

HE Sok An, as a high government figure, played an active and dynamic role in the management and conservation of cultural heritage in his own country and at an international level.  Cambodian heritage is exceptional, and Sok An reflected this in his strong commitment to it over the years.

As President of the APSARA Authority, responsible for the management of the World Heritage property of Angkor, Sok An attended all sessions of the International Coordinating Committee for the Safeguarding and Development of Angkor (ICC-Angkor) from 2004 up until February 2017, when he was absent due to ill health. He ensured that decisions of the World Heritage Committee concerning Angkor were always given the necessary attention, and played a key role in the protection, conservation and sustainable development of the site. He was also active in efforts to inscribe the Temple of Preah Vihear on the World Heritage List, which met with success in July 2008. Continue reading…


Conservation and Use of Southeast Asian Collections

February 17, 2016

On February 8th the CollAsia course on Conservation and Use of Southeast Asian Collections began in Bandung, Indonesia. The training activity, organized in collaboration with the Bandung Geological Museum and the Geological Agency of Indonesia, Ministry for Energy and Mineral Resources, with the support of the Korean Cultural Heritage Administration (CHA), brought together 34 conservation professionals from 18 countries. They will spend three weeks exploring the challenges of conserving and using collections.

The activity was inaugurated at the Geological Agency Auditorium, with a grand traditional Indonesian ceremony offered by the Geological Agency and presented by the Head of Bandung Geological Museum, Mr Oman Abdurahman, the Vice Minister of Tourism and the Indonesian National Commission for UNESCO. Continue reading…


Traditional Knowledge Systems

January 6, 2016

Third Annual Forum on the Applicability and Adaptability of Traditional Knowledge Systems in Conservation and Management of Heritage in Asia

Traditional knowledge and its applicability to cultural heritage preservation is increasingly gaining recognition in light of global discourse on sustainable development, climate change, disasters and resilience. In reflection of this worldwide shift, the World Heritage Committee has included the use of traditional knowledge systems for site management within its Operational Guidelines. The natural heritage sector is also very engaged in related activities, and in Africa, institutions have already begun compiling information from various areas of the continent.

Asia is rich in time-tested practices, and the inclusion of these systems into discussions about heritage is timely. Traditional management systems have the power to make a significant impact on the environmental, social and economic sustainability of the region. For example, ancient practices can help curb carbon emissions when maintaining a heritage place, and the continuation or revival of traditional crafts not only ensures that knowledge is passed down through generations, but that artisans can make a stable living. Continue reading…


First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis

March 27, 2015

30 March – 24 April 2015, Netherlands

First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis

Is it possible to save cultural heritage from the intentional targeting that we are witnessing in Syria and Iraq? In the aftermath of large-scale natural disasters such as Cyclone Pam, how can cultural heritage be recovered quickly and effectively?

Over the next four weeks, 21 professionals from risk-prone areas such as Gaza, Guatemala, Haiti, Philippines, Syria and Ukraine will convene in Amsterdam to participate in the international course on First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis, jointly organized by ICCROM, the Smithsonian Institution, the Netherlands National Commission of UNESCO, and 11 national institutions including the Netherlands Ministries of Culture and Education.

This is the fourth international course on First Aid, organized within the framework of ICCROM’s multi-partner programme on disaster risk management.

First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis aims to equip proactive cultural “first aiders” with the necessary skills and knowledge to work with communities and other mainstream emergency actors to protect cultural heritage amidst an unfolding crisis situation.

“Culture cannot wait, the credo of the First Aid training stems from the idea that for communities uprooted by disasters, culture in its both tangible and intangible forms, provides a thread of continuity and helps in overcoming the trauma of loss and displacement, therefore, it cannot be separated from humanitarian assistance”, says Aparna Tandon, the course leader and ICCROM Project Specialist. Continue reading…


CollAsia Course on Handling, Packing and Moving Collections Ends

February 20, 2015

Group photo with the ICCROM and CollAsia flags, taken from above

The CollAsia international course on Handling, Packing and Moving Collections came to a close in Kuching, Malaysia. Organized by ICCROM and the Sarawak Museum Department, with the support of the Korean Cultural Heritage Administration (CHA), the CollAsia activity aimed to improve scientific literacy and critical thinking skills among the diverse professionals caring for Southeast Asian heritage collections.

The training activity brought together over 40 heritage specialists from 21 different countries in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. Through lectures and interactive sessions, participants explored the scientific principles underlying past and present systems, materials and work practices, as well as the manufacture, use and conservation of collections.

Participants were encouraged to share the traditional collections conservation practices in their countries during the Conference Day held on 16 January. Study visits were organized to Sarawak Cultural Village and the Bidayuh longhouse of Kampung Benuk, to learn and draw new ideas for research from the rich living heritage of the local communities around Kuching. Continue reading…


ICCROM-CHA Forum on Authenticity in the Asian Context

January 20, 2015

Group photo2nd ICCROM CHA-Korea Forum
Colombo and Habarana, Sri Lanka
8-12 December 2014

As part of a thematic seminar series funded by Cultural Heritage Administration (CHA) of Korea, a second Forum was held on “Authenticity in the Asian Context” in Sri Lanka. This event was organized last December by the Sri Lankan Ministry of National Heritage, the Department of Archaeology, the Postgraduate Institute of Archaeology and the University of Kelaniya.

The programme consisted of three sections: Continue reading…


CollAsia Course on Handling, Packing and Moving Collections

January 14, 2015

12 – 30 January 2015, Sarawak Museum Department, Kuching, Malaysia

Logo-CollAsia-1

With over 40 specialists from Asia-Pacific and beyond, the CollAsia international course on Handling, Packing and Moving Collections is taking place 12 – 30 January 2015 in the Natural History Museum, Sarawak Museum Department, Kuching, Malaysia.

Organized by the Sarawak Museum Department and ICCROM, with the support of the Korean Cultural Heritage Administration (CHA), the course aims to improve scientific literacy and critical thinking skills among the diverse professionals caring for Southeast Asian heritage collections.

The course focuses on scientific principles underlying past and present systems for managing museum objects, materials and work practices, as well as the manufacture, use and conservation of collections. Participants are encouraged to share traditional collections conservation practices used in their countries. The course identifies, reviews, discusses and compares living cultural practices and current conservation principles and approaches relevant to the theme of the course. It also encourages further research into developing innovative solutions.

The intensive training activity consists of lectures and interactive sessions, both in the classroom and around Sarawak, with practical exercises. Continue reading…