Members of different religious communities, ethnic minorities and political parties took part in the reconstruction of Isa-bey Hammam in Sarajevo as part of a Workshop held within the building on 28 August 2014. The Workshop was organised by Cultural Heritage without Borders (CHwB) in cooperation with the Vakuf and the U.S. Alumni Association in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and within the EU funded project “Make it Ours!” .
Isa-bey’s Hammam is the oldest public bath house in Sarajevo and an object of special cultural significance for the country. Two workshops were organised within the Hammam so far and attended by 70 people from various professional backgrounds. Aim of the project activities is to raise awareness on the importance of cultural heritage as a common wealth amongst the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
During the Workshop, participants listened to lectures by Rahela (Levi) Džidić, volunteer and facilitator of the interactive workshops, titled “Where is(n’t) the Mikveh in Isa-bey Hamam” and Nihad Čengić, restorer of works of art, titled “An Introduction to the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage, with an emphasis on the use of Traditional Technologies”.
“Our country is one of very few with such an exceptional cultural diversity, and this is something that must be nurtured as a treasure for future generations” said Rahela (Levi) Džidić after the presentation.
Artist Alma Telibečirević also participated in the reconstruction of the Hamam, who is alongside artist Damir Imamović, art restorer Nihad Čengić, and downhill champion of Bosnia and Herzegovina Hasan Gušić, Ambassador of Cultural Heritage in BiH.
“It is a great honour to be an Ambassador of Cultural Heritage for such an interesting and complex country as Bosnia and Herzegovina. The country, most of all, has an infinite possibility for the multifaceted presentation of its values and cultures, and I was also engaged in this through art. The preservation and reconstruction of cultural heritage should be one of the main priorities of BiH society, as throughout the centuries much invaluable cultural heritage has been left as a legacy upon which the country could base its future, in order to standout within the large network of European centres of culture” said Ms Telibečirević.
After the lecture, workshop participants – with the help of experienced craftsmen – symbolically engaged in plastering the facade and interior walls of the Hamam, thus contributing to its restoration and preservation.
The project “Make it yours!” will be implemented throughout 2014 and 2015 via a series of activities aimed toward different stakeholders, in order to increase a sense of belonging to and connection with cultural heritage and to provide a space in which to open dialogues on heritage, culture and identity. The project is funded by the European Union under the ‘Sarajevo 2014’ programme, which incorporates a series of projects implemented in and around the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, in order for Sarajevo to send messages of peace, reconciliation and solidarity to the world.