We are two young women committed to promoting and preserving Islamic culture in Georgia, a project begun after visiting the monuments in Samtskhe-Javakheti two years ago. We document these mosques and monuments with photos, study the architecture, and collect stories.
We want to cover the entire region and make a systematized database of mosques. We think this is important because these structures are often forgotten or neglected. We want to give this database to the government for protection.
This will have several impacts. We will help people see Islamic culture as part of Georgian culture.
Second, we will encourage locals to take care of their cultural heritage.
I believe our efforts have started producing some results already. Media outlets have become interested and have shot a documentary. This has motivated some locals to take care of several mosques.
We want to continue taking photos of the mosques and systematizing our materials. Further, we want to take the photos beyond our archives and our social media pages and present them in public spaces, in those communities where these monuments are located.
The biggest problem is lack of awareness and absence of communication with the locals. We think that holding an exhibition in the village mosques, as they move from one site to another, will connect various sides, the representatives of the government, village and interested persons and show them the real picture. The focus will be placed on the touristic potential of the village. We hope that the project will reduce Islamophobic attitudes as well.
As a result of volunteer activity we have collected a lot of materials, photos, stories. We will use some of the photos from the archive, will shoot more and select the best of them. We will invite the local authorities and all the interested parties, village residents. We will make short reports and publish them in the media.
The main goal of the project is ambitious. It serves the idea of introducing the relevant bodies and society to Islamic monuments, which are only used as store houses and cattle sheds, and preserve them.
The item obtained as a result of the project – the camera, will be used by us for future activities, because tens of mosques still need to be photographed.
Equal gender opportunity:
It must be noted that in the villages of Samtskhe-Javakheti both Christians and Muslims live. It is necessary to unite them within the scope of this project. The project will be open for all the interested persons, regardless of sex, gender identity, nationality and age.
20 photos. size – 38X52
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