Credit to Photographer Georges Moubayed small Event

Saving Aleppo’s Heritage: Stories from Local Graduate Architects

This event, recorded in June 2022, brought together Syrian Graduate Architects from the social enterprise ‘Places of ARcture’, to discuss the importance of protecting cultural heritage in their home city of Aleppo, within their own practice.

In a country devasted by many years of conflict, this event highlighted some of the surviving architectural heritage in the ancient part of the Aleppo city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The discussions explored the challenges of preserving and restoring a living heritage site, whilst respecting and incorporating the needs of the local people connected to the area.

Through a series of presentations, short film screenings and a Q&A, we discover the different ways that these architects are positioning the identity of the city, its tangible and intangible heritage, as the cornerstones of its reconstruction.

This event was programmed in collaboration with the London Festival of Architecture.

Cic 7 June event Event

Understanding the Illicit Trade under ISIS in Syria

This online discussion, recorded in June 2022, explores the illicit trade of cultural property in Syria, under the ISIS regime. From the regulated looting of heritage sites to the systems of trade and management which trafficked archaeological finds out of the country, we explore new evidence which brings to light the precedence, practice and prevalence of these activities.

We welcome two heritage specialists who will share their thoughts and research, considering areas such as; the role of local communities in understanding and preventing looting, international attention and media myths that surround these activities, and their recommendations for a global approach to tackling the illicit trade for good.

- Dr Neil Brodie, Endangered Archaeology in the Middle East & North Africa, School of Archaeology, Oxford University
- Dr Isber Sabrine, Co-Founder and President, Heritage for Peace
- Laura Searson, Cultural Heritage Preservation Lead, V&A (Host)

Humanitarian Event

Heritage and Humanitarian Collaboration in Emergency Response

This roundtable event, recorded in April 2022, discussed bridging the gap between the heritage and humanitarian sectors, exploring themes relating to communication, collaboration and the role of heritage in peacebuilding.
It addressed how the cultural and humanitarian sectors engage in emergency response activities, as well as the routes - and obstacles – to better integration between our fields.

Laura Searson, Cultural Heritage Preservation Lead, V&A (Host)
Aparna Tandon, Senior Programme Leader, First Aid and Resilience for Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis, ICCROM
Camille Nussbaum, Executive Coordinator, Institute of Studies on Conflicts and Humanitarian Action
Vanessa Fraga Prol, Programme Manager, Cultural Emergency Response (CER)
Nadia Hashimi, CEO of Sayed & Nadia Consultancy (former World Bank Employee).

Collaborate for climate Event

Collaborate for Climate

In this online event, recorded in December 2021, we explore the value of collaboration in combatting the climate crisis, asking; how can cultural heritage play its part?

As we look to build a future that is more sustainable, equitable and ecological, we investigate the role that heritage can play in developing strategies and practical frameworks to support our fight to protect the planet.
In this session we bring together 3 heritage specialists working to unite efforts within and beyond the sector, to discuss the importance of networks and partnerships in their work.
Understanding that the health of people, wildlife and the environment are all deeply intertwined, we explore how we can learn from other sectors to support our mutual aims.

Archive Collections in Crisis

Join us as we bring together 3 archival institutions working across the Middle East and North Africa to discuss emergency planning, implementing disaster management strategies and working towards sustainable recoveries. Addressing the varied nature of collections - from photographs and film, to books, manuscripts, built heritage, and the digital - the event will highlight the approaches and experiences of organisations in protecting tangible and intangible heritage. Discussion will address the creation of emergency plans, the use of technological safeguards, training and resources, as well as the importance of proactive collaborations and investment in sustainable safeguarding. Six months on from the explosion in the Port of Beirut, the event will reflect on how best to protect collections and colleagues amid continuously challenging contexts, while facing compounding crises.

This event is produced in partnership between the Arab Image Foundation and the V&A’s Culture in Crisis Programme.