Cultural Center Gulzar Village in Dushanbe

The cultural center Gulzar Village in Dushanbe plays a central role in imparting Tajik culture. It was founded in 2020 by arts and crafts specialist Nigina Ikromi.

She restored the building and courtyard of a former mosque during the difficult pandemic period and converted it into a cultural center. Gulzar Village supports the revival and further development of traditional handicrafts. Workshops and cultural events take place here. The center is a meeting point for everyone interested in the rich culture of Tajikistan.

The works of numerous artisans are exhibited here. From products made of traditional ikat fabrics, Suzani embroidery, ceramics to woodwork and others, you can find out about the various handicrafts of the country.

Guests from abraod like our research team in summer 2022 will be warmly welcomed. During our stay in Dushanbe we lived in Gulzar village and experienced the great hospitality of Nigina and Muhayo.

We enjoyed so much the family atmosphere and the many culinary delights from Muhayo sitting together in the courtyard of the cultural center.

Nigina introduced us to artists and craftspeople and allowed us to meet them in their workshops and studios. Among them some of the participants of our Tajikistan Culture Festival in may.

In the artist colony of Dushanbe which belongs to the Academy of Arts we met the famous painter Eraj Olimov who invited us to his studio. It was an interesting experience for us to visit his working place and to marvel at a large number of his works.

On another floor of the multi-storey building from the Soviet era, we met the young, ambitious jewelry designer Zarafshon Amridodovna at work and were allowed to look over her shoulder.

The fashion center in Dushanbe is the Hippodrome, where numerous fashion designers have their studios. We visited the famous designer Khurshed Sattorov, whose work I have long admired on social media.

So it was a special pleasure to finally see his colorful creations, which are deeply rooted in the Tajik textile traditions Ikat and Chaken, live and to get to know the designer personally. He also gave us a lot of information about fabrics and shows us part of his extensive collection.

Two other artists we met in their homes. Kundal Master Karim Raqibov and Ceramic Master Sukhrob Saidov. Kundal or relief painting is today in Central Asia only practiced in Tajikistan. Master Raqibov gave us an overview of the history of Kundal and explained the elaborate process in detail. I couldn’t resist the temptation to buy one of his works. Since I had no transport for it, it is now waiting for me in Gulzar Village. A good, if by no means the only, reason to return there as soon as possible.

Ceramic Master Sukhrob Saidov works in his home. The oven in which he burns his ceramics stands on the covered balcony. His greatest wish would be a new oven which allows to fire also larger ceramics. When you see his great works, you can only wish him to realize his dream soon. We keep our fingers crossed and look forward to see him at our festival in Vienna.

A musical evening with the famous musician Sirojiddin Juraev and his Shashmaqom Ensemble as well as Nabijon Mukhtorov from Ensemble Mehtariyon at Gulzar Village was an unforgettable experience and rounded off our stay.

We would like to thank Nigina Ikromi for this great experience and deep insight into Tajik culture and look forward to welcoming her to our Tajikistan Culture Festival in Vienna.

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