A workshop held in conjunction with the exhibition “Nomads and Networks: The Ancient Art and Culture of Kazakhstan” currently at the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in the Smithsonian Institution until December 2, 2012.
Nomadism has been a key aspect of culture in the Eurasian space, especially on the Kazakh steppes, throughout the centuries. The Russian colonization and the Soviet Union drastically transformed the Kazakh society in the 19th and 20th century. Since independence in 1991, the legacy of nomadism has been rehabilitated by the political authorities in their nation building schemes.
The society has also participated in reconstructing symbols of the nomadic past: they have become objects of memory and research, but also objects of artistic inspiration, and commercial branding. This workshop invites a team of experts to discuss the contemporary use of the concept of nomadism from various angles.