Culture Naadam: Promoting Cultural HeritageArt & Culture
Ulaanbaatar, July 13, 2023 /MONTSAME/. Commemorating the Naadam Festival, the "Culture Naadam" was jointly organized by the Mongolian National University of Arts and Culture, the Arts Council of Mongolia, and Rio Tinto Mongolia LLC at the "Mongol Naadam" Complex in Khui Doloon Khudag on July 11-12. This festival aimed to broaden the scope of the Naadam Festival and promote Mongolian heritage and folk art.
To fully understand and enjoy the Naadam Festival and experience the rich traditions of nomadic life and culture, the "Culture Naadam" event provides an ideal opportunity. This two-day event was designed to display the unique aspects of nomadic arts and culture in an interactive and immersive way.
During the Culture Naadam, which took place in the horse racing valley, visitors had the chance to witness horse races. They could also take leisurely walks amidst the aroma of pasture sage and thyme, creating a true sensory experience. One of the highlights was the "One Day in Mongolia" village within the Culture Naadam, featuring a collection of Mongol gers (traditional nomadic dwellings) and pop-up tents. This village served as an arts and crafts hub, where heritage bearers and artists demonstrated and shared the distinctive elements of nomadic culture.
In addition to the art performances that promoted Mongolia's intangible cultural heritage, which is inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, visitors had the opportunity to immerse themselves in Mongolian culture and tradition through the exploration of specially-themed gers. These gers were dedicated to various aspects of Mongolian culture, including "Folk Arts," "Mongolian Tea Culture," "Diary Tradition," "Airag (fermented mare milk) Culture," and "Kazakh Culture."
The 15th annual Culture Naadam was special in inviting cultural heritage bearers in person.
E. Sonintogos, the President of the Mongolian National University of Arts and Culture, said, “The special feature of this year's "Culture Naadam" is its focus on what sets Mongolians apart from others in a globalized society and what forms the basis of Mongolia's existence and the Mongolian people. This festival differs from other festivals as it is rooted in the cultural heritage of Mongolians. Mongolians are people who hold freedom in high regard, value education, and prioritize the care of their parents. Mongolia is a nation of rich ancient history, great tradition of statehood, and amazing historical and cultural heritage. We are aiming to introduce them to the people and pass them on to future generations. UNESCO is implementing the “Mongol Bii Biyelgee” project at our university. Within this project, cultural heritage bearers from Uvs, Khovd, and Khuvsgul aimag participated in this year’s Culture Festival in person.”
The organizers emphasized that the purpose of this year's "Culture Naadam" was to introduce festival-goers to the history and culture, the unique heritage, and artworks that have been passed down from the ancestors of nomadic Mongolians. They also aimed to foster love and respect for this heritage and create a sense of pride among the attendees.