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Project Profile


2006 Award of Distinction

Uch Monument

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Jury Citation

The restoration of the striking Uch Monument Complex has stabilized the monumental ruins of three tombs dating back to the fifteenth century within the modern context of a living cultural landscape.  Given the paucity of historic evidence about the original building form, the decision to preserve the site as an archaeological complex is an appropriate one. The sensitive conservation approach will ensure that the patina of age is preserved, as embodied in the texture and materiality of the polychrome structures, wrapped in striking bands of blue, white and turquoise glazed tiles. The deployment of innovative materials and techniques marks a welcome development for the field of conservation science in the sub-region. Adroitly managed by an independent conservation centre, the project was undertaken through a productive collaboration with the government, international technical experts and local residents trained as paraprofessionals, with generous funding from the international community. As the conservation work has been consciously positioned within a larger project of rehabilitating the Uch settlement on a self-help basis, the local community stands to benefit directly. Furthermore, the establishment of a training centre in conservation and urban upgrading will mean that not only the public at large, but also the conservation profession, will be rewarded by the safeguarding of what was once one of the world’s most endangered monuments.