Poetry of Stones Ani: An Architectural Treasure on Cultural Crossroads exhibition

Following the inclusion of Ani Archaeological Site in the World Cultural Heritage List in 2016, Anadolu Kültür from Turkey, Norwegian Institute for Cultural Heritage Research (NIKU) from Norway, and Eurasia Partnership Foundation from Armenia came together to organize an exhibition on the medieval city of Ani. The exhibition intended to draw attention to the need for further support to save the treasures in and around Ani for future generations while presenting the glorious cultural heritage of Ani.

To this end, preparatory work was started with meetings and field visits through which archaeologists, art historians, restoration architects and photographers came together. The exhibition "Poetry of Stones, Ani: An Architectural Treasure on Cultural Crossroads" that was produced as a result of the collaborative efforts of the experts first took place at Depo in Istanbul between March and May 2018, then at Yerevan National Architectural Museum in Yerevan between July and August 2018, at Oslo University in Oslo between October 2018 and January 2019, and at Erimtan Archaeology and Arts Museum in Ankara between February - May 2019. Finally, in collaboration with the Kars City Council, the exhibition opened in Kars at Namık Kemal Cultural Center on 6 December 2019.

As the title of the exhibition underlines, having sprung into existence in a dynamic, colorful and complicated landscape, upon which a variety of cultures came into interaction over the centuries, Ani is a treasure of art and architecture with its architectural diversity and numerous monuments. The exhibition reveals the cultural richness of Ani through presenting its history and architectural splendor along with the current restoration efforts in the site. Like for the works done so far, the importance of the collaboration of experts from Turkey and Armenia for future works is once more exposed with this exhibition.

The project was carried out with the support of Norwegian Embassy, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, and Institut Français de Turquie.