Last year, the biggest summit of Turkey "2011 Summit of Culture and Tourism” is processed the theme of " "Open-Air Museum Turkey", We would like to share N.Serhad Akcan, Executive Vice President for Cultural Heritage and Museums, speech on “the protection of immovable cultural property” in Cultural Tourism Summit I with you, our valued readers.
N.Serhat Akcan ;
ICOMOS, Venice Charter prepared by the academicians who met in Venice at the beginning of May 1964 and was adopted at international level, delivered its judgment on the foundation of International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) in 1965. Methods suggested in this document which is applied first in Europe and then all over the world through United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO has been accepted by a decision of the High Council of the Antiquities and Monuments GEEAYK in our country immediately after the establishment of ICOMOS.
In the structure of the history of the Protection globalised with the selectivity criteria of UNESCO, One of the important outcomes of Venice Charter is the mentioning of each nation has its own decision-making authority for the preservation of its own cultural heritage. If we approach in this perspective, what we’re doing in our country about “Cultural Heritage and Conservation”? Are we decorating the cities, streets and buildings? Are we doing a kind of surgical operation to buildings? These issues appear as questions to be answered. However, we consider these questions in an institutional stance; the answer contains a description of a much higher scale. Because beyond all of these goals we are fulfilling a constitutional duty.
Article 63 of the Constitution: “The State provides protection of the historical, cultural and natural assets and takes supportive and encouraging measures for this purpose” in a sense it says the state is responsible for protecting and carrying to the future all the know-how in this field. Here we as professionals academicians, producers in this field, the pride and power of being a citizen of the Republic of Turkey, citing the protection of cultural heritage in its Constitution is the task and duty of all of us to fulfill this responsibility in every sense.
Monuments we tried to protect and keep alive may be different. We shouldn’t forget that we inherited them by remembering the one who carry them to the present from different times and bring them to the present times without criticizing their forms of physical intervention.
Therefore, this responsibility is not just me, or you, is our collective responsibility. In fact, it should be noted that sharing the responsibility is the right of mankind and nations due to share this responsibility comes an inventory of the monuments that document human civilization. Here, the values in this field we are trying to protect face us with the universal law.
Responsibility for the scale of production the protection of cultural heritage, will we produce only for ourselves? While we are changing the facades on the streets, bettering the physical environment for them how we will think of our concerns in the name of the one who do not think by producing them. We should keep in mind that our production today will be the cultural heritage of the future as well as the values produced yesterday and gained the attribute of cultural heritage today. Just like the works of Mimar Sinan imparted to humanity, the responsibility of generating today will create the nature of the cultural heritage of the future and its values.
One of the unique aspects of Sinan works not to be touched; along with the national nature of the works on the same scale as well as documentary of the important monuments and artistic values of human civilization and after hundreds of year they are still in use. In this respect, there is no difference between the identity and the mission of the monuments in the world which is damaged due to different reasons and in our country.
Protection is not a matter of getting a measure alone, but multi-lateral thinking, is a matter of understanding and comprehending the components. Here, I tried to describe the protection in our duties and responsibility on all the values. This led us somewhere with the concepts of law No. 2863. So what we want to achieve? It is to accept everything in any way without seeing the difference between instead it should be, which is to be and to do instead which need to be done.
When we consider the concept of “Protection” with a realistic approach, a new time zone is started. The name of this time zone is “future”. How will we carry our values and cultural assets to the future ? Here the fundamental question should be asked for the sustainability of the idea of protection. Then we have to understand future. I wonder if in the future how will our social organization, behavior, economic resources, political, commercial and cultural relations be that means the “life” would be? So, the concept of protection is a vital responsibility in the social scale. Understanding the people and all their concerns and thoughts about the future is the cornerstone and sine qua non for the survival of the concept of protection.
When we approached to the protection with this view it seems easy to get a decision what we will maintain, emerge a responsibility for us as to know how to protect them, plan and comment on the whole of our future. This responsibility requires us to work very disciplined.
The authorities beyond just consolidation of monuments, rehabilitation work in the physical environment of monuments come to the agenda as like physical environment that is efficient while creating the monuments, while protecting them as stated by all the mayors. In this sense, the scale of the protection and conservation activities in interaction with growing responsibilities is turning into an important economic resource.
In the light of all these findings, to define the usage related with the meeting at cultural fields and sustainability of social scale tourism activities, I would like to say the following;
If culture is a production, it is a workforce in terms of tourism. Culture is a resource; in terms of tourism is participation. Culture is to be a different, it is awareness in terms of tourism Here, cultural tourism activities is to operate this model and implement this model. In every sense, it is to convert awareness into what is different, participation into the source, production into labor force. In this model “Protection” is a scale of responsibility for sensitivity, humanity and the future.
Being responsible to the future, to document and maintain is a responsibility to history. More importantly being our duty is a matter of “commemorations us good”. In this context, in the process of cultural production which is the main component of humanity; acting with this consciousness is a requirement of being a human.
Historical values are the shared memory of nations. Its own main idea of the cultural tourism to recognize and understand the shared memory in international sense, documentary of civilization and the thought of meeting with its values. I think? Do you think? No, all of us should think like this, give rise to thought.
Why we’re losing our cultural heritage? All of these monuments have a name, personality and the quality. I would say something like this together with the civilizations on this land and the sad story about the architectural heritage of the Republican period. We are able to destroy (especially under the threat of development) for the sake of a rant on this land we have obtain to make it our homes, all values and cultural assets designed with its functions, monumentalize to commemorate and perpetuate. We have the wind up a loss in a sense for some interest to live and to understand our responsibility to history. “Yet, instead of seeing to protect as a result if we process the meaning of planning life with to be protected and value it, we can bury the fear of losing them into the history”.
It is nothing more than the story of preserving the original with contemporary hardware and imagination power of our future the thing that we change all the time, and turned into something. Understand it, respect it and to take participation with the related, to protect and live only the values of contribution, blending the future with history deliver its value to the future increasingly.
Therefore, we are the element of “inter-continental race” as our minister said proudly in the scale of tourism. In this sense, the adoption of cultural values at the local level and join the life by blending will be the most powerful organs in struggle between the continents.
Moving the values of a country forward is much more meaningful and important than the policy. For this reason, different ideas, thoughts in local governing, common sense regarding the protection of monuments are important elements for us to be a body and a power to believe.
In this sense, “Basis of the Republic of Turkey is culture.” Great leader Atatürk with his speech and position safe and presented us this field that we talked a lot about today, civilizations for centuries and their works collected on beyond all these the basic philosophy of protecting them.
Now, we can say that “we use our cultural know-how as a tool for our national development by taking the advantage this treasure. Here in terms of culture economy, tourism is the key word to this.
In the field of Cultural Heritage, for participants responsibilities share with the local governments related to Historic Cities Association and Çekül when Metin Sozen questioned where he is from I witness his saying of “from here”. As Mr, Minister and Mr. Under-Secretary who give a major impetus with his services to the contributions and international competition in this field only be provided by the creation of awareness of local development and created an application domain. You who provide services in the field of culture and tourism where you work one day you will be asked where you’re from “you will respond it “from here”.
All of us in this country are from here and we will carry this country, cultural heritage values and contemporary equipment to the future with pride and with a successful story.
Deputy General Director of Cultural Heritage and Museums