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“Integrativer Ort BauDENKMAL!”

Europe: Heritage Lived Deutsches Fachwerkzentrum Quedlinburg e.V.

For more than 15 years now the Deutsches Fachwerkzentrum Quedlinburg e.V. ("The German Half-timbered Buildings Centre Quedlinburg"), a non-profit association, has been working on the lasting restoration of historic buildings as an authentic living testimony of our European architectural heritage. We consider this to be an educational mission for the people of Europe and all continents.

Practical project work and seminars take place at cultural heritage sites of national significance in Saxony-Anhalt. These include the former Adelshof dating from the Renaissance, the Bunte Hof in Osterwieck and the half-timbered ensemble of the oldest surviving school at Hühnerbrücke 4 and Grudenberg 8 in Halberstadt. Also, first steps were undertaken towards the renovation of the mediaeval moated castle, Schloss Erxleben, in the course of the Project. Locations are chosen to fit the work priorities of a particular seminar. The content guideline is the sustainable and resource-conserving renovation of historic buildings. The buildings stand as historic sites ("DENKMALort") of the European cultural heritage with their architecture, craftsmanship and artistry, not to mention their varied use in the course of the centuries.

Thus the painting of a Renaissance door with "Lucretia", based on a copper engraving of the Dutch School, the grisaille painting with strapwork ornamentation in the "cosy chamber" using templates of Dutch copper engravers, the simple decor of baroque classrooms or fireplaces, spiral staircases, sandstone door frames and mediaeval and Renaissance roof constructions all "reflect" our European heritage. The architectural heritage exemplifies common cultural roots that transcend national borders and form a focus of awareness in our seminars.

The aim of the international seminars conducted by the Fachwerkzentrum is not only to protect the European cultural heritage, convey its value and significance, sensitively restore its sites and teach craftsmanship, but to integrate people of different cultural backgrounds into society, overcome prejudice and initiate intercultural exchange. Further areas of activity are the presentation of work, talks, field trips and the participation of local citizens to accompany this process.

The guiding principle is fully embodied in the "Integrativer Ort BauDENKMAL!" ("Inclusive Architectural Monument Site!") renovation project. Refugees and migrants have been helping for more than two years to save historic architectural monuments in Saxony-Anhalt from irreversible neglect. In co-operation with the local population, historic monuments of Saxony-Anhalt that were once abandoned ruins are being given a fresh lease of life as new centres of joint community activity.

The various situations for human encounter enabled by the Project, in addition to the conservation of the "architectural monument", create an open-mindedness for new ways - of mutual acceptance, intercultural exchange and self-esteem - to grow and develop. The "Integrativer Ort BauDENKMAL!" seminar project not only preserves architectural monuments threatened by irreversible neglect, but offers them the prospect of being used for new purposes in the future. This is an approach that many seminar participants want to utilize with respect to architectural monuments in their own countries.

The sponsors of the "Integrativer Ort BauDENKMAL!" Project are the German Federal Environmental Foundation (DBU), as well as the Commerzbank Foundation.

Planned Presentation Formats:
Seminars in the respective architectural monuments – Schloß Erxleben, the half-timbered ensemble Hühnerbrücke 4/Grudenberg 8 in Halberstadt, Schloß Stolberg

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