Interim culture minister sees the solution of problems of the field in systematic changes
YEREVAN, MARCH 5, ARMENPRESS. Interim culture minister of Armenia Nazeni Gharibyan highlights implementing systematic changes, creating respective environment for creative persons in the cultural institutions for the development of the sector.
Nazeni Gharibyan gave an interview to ARMENPRESS, talking about the issues of the field.
-Mrs. Gharibyan, one of the program goals of the government in the cultural sector is to introduce temporary management systems in order to increase the revenues of various cultural facilities. What are these temporary systems, in your opinion?
-Museums, theaters, concert halls and other cultural structures can carry out an online ticket sale, advertisement and search for different ways of popularization. We have theaters with quite old equipment, the stages should be equipped with the latest technologies. New audio, light, computer systems are needed in the concert halls.
The cultural institutions should manage their extra-budget and be able to find sponsors to solve various issues.
The management doesn’t suppose the technical equipment only. The internal management system should improve which is directly linked with the legislative field, and that in its turn with the changes of the law on SNCOs. We need to develop a new legislation for SNCOs or supplement the current legislation. During my tenure I had discussions on these issues with various specialists, and all state that the laws on SNCOs contain points which hinder the activities of creative-performing SNCOs.
-Many artists state that the culture ministry should play a great role in creating a creative environment and ensuring the communication between the creative person and the society. What do you think, what environment is needed in Armenia for complete expression and exercise of creative abilities?
-I attach great importance to the existence of equal conditions and transparency for all. The first thing we did and need to improve was the introduction of a new competitive grant system. This means that any cultural event can be implemented by passing the grant competition. Special commissions have been formed for the competition, there are different categories which constantly change and will change according to the priorities of our strategy. Currently there are eight categories, maybe their number will increase in the future. Maybe we will open more targeted programs. This is already a step which ensures an equal field, and why I mention this because even our SNCOs which want to implement any program, receive funding not with a subsidy, but with the participation in a grant program with equal conditions and other organizations. This is a great achievement for me.
Festivals, contests and similar initiatives help to improve the creative abilities. But for me it’s more interesting how the product is created and reaches up to the popularization of the performance.
Various cultural events are being held also in provinces. I am confident that the residents of the provinces are broadly taking part in these events. For me it’s more important to create various institutions, organizations in the provinces which will contribute to the participation of the local people to the creation of a cultural product.
-What will you say about the preservation of a material cultural heritage? The government’s action plan proposes to create an information database for this purpose.
-When we are trying to talk, negotiate on this or that issue, we need to clearly know its boundaries what stands behind and then map all that. Mapping is necessary in the popularization and preservation of both non-material and material cultural heritage.
-The government plans to promote the implementation of research of historical-cultural monuments in the territory of the state, as well as new research programs for archaeological complex. Are there concrete issues in the field which need to be clarified?
-The preservation of monuments is one of the most problematic issues. The problems in the field exist long ago and are not solved for years. We need to understand that a cultural monument is not an architectural structure only, it’s an entire complex that has history, in other words everything. While restoring the monuments it is necessary to take into account the civilization requirements of their creation period, not only the monument, but its territory as well should be preserved. I repeat that there are many problems.
Archaeology is quite developed in Armenia, but we have few archaeologists who study the medieval values. They also need training. We do not have a medieval archaeology school, and architectures have always dealt with the medieval monuments.
Interview by Angela Hambardzumyan
Edited and translated by Aneta Harutyunyan