ResiliArt Debate: Cinema Heritage of Central Asia. Conservation and Promotion Challenges.

23 October 2020

Fourth ResiliArt Debate of UNESCO Cluster Office in Almaty will take place on Tuesday 27 October 2020 from 16:00 to 18:00 time of Almaty and will be dedicated to the conservation and promotion challenges of the cinema heritage of Central Asia.


In response to the confinement and lockdowns in the context of COVID-19 pandemic, UNESCO launched the ResiliArt movement for artists and cultural professionals, which includes a series of debates with the participation of different creative professions.

The ResiliArt movement has three main goals:
Raise awareness about the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the culture sector in general and the livelihoods of artists and cultural professionals in particular;
Provide a platform for artists and cultural professionals to ensure that their voices are heard in order to address the existing gaps and required needs;
Contribute to strategic decision-making and development of assistance mechanisms pertaining to the creative sector.


The cinematography in Central Asia has a history of about 100 years. During this time, many works in different genres have been produced that in their own artistic way have been interpreting the history and culture of local communities in different political, economic and social contexts. At different times, the attitude of local communities and public authorities towards cinematography has been changing significantly. Today, the preservation and promotion of this type of cultural heritage is becoming more and more relevant as more and more new technical possibilities for processing and facilitating the ways to watch classic films have emerged. In this way, the cinema heritage of a region can serve not only as a mirror of past events, but also as a source of inspiration for modern generations of viewers and professionals of the creative industries.

However, what is the current state of the cinema heritage of Central Asia? What classic films can be watched and where? What can be done to facilitate access to them for a wide range of viewers? How can the current situation change during the quarantine and restrictive measures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated crisis of the entire cultural sector?

In order to try to answer these questions, and to initiate and provide a platform for exchanging views and best practices in preserving and further promoting cinema heritage in Central Asia at all possible levels, the UNESCO Cluster Office in Almaty is holding another "ResiliArt" debate entitled "Cinema Heritage of Central Asia. Preservation and Promotion Challenges."

The debate is organized in the framework of the ResiliArt movement and implementation of the project Strengthening Film Industries in Central Asia financed by the government of the Republic of Korea

The debate is held on the occasion of World Day for Audiovisual Heritage.

The debate will be held in English and Russian languages. Online simultaneous translation will be provided to all panelists and viewers.


The following panelists will participate in the discussion:
Eljon Abbasov filmmaker, Director of the State Unitary Enterprise Republican Film Fund of the Republic of Uzbekistan; Aidarkhan Adilbayev producer, Vice-President of Kazakhfilm Joint Stock Company; Sharofat Arabova culture and film expert from Tajikistan, candidate of historical sciences, member of NETPAC (Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema), leading research fellow at the Department of Art Studies of the National Academy of Sciences of Tajikistan, filmmaker at the Department of Fiction and Documentary Movies of Tojikfilm State Institution;
Daniel Bird Director of the Hamo Bek-Nazarov Project ( focused on film preservation and restoration in the South Caucasus and Central Asia;
Saodat Ismailova independent filmmaker and artist from Uzbekistan;
Nigora Karimova Doctor of Art Studies, film historian, head of the Department of Cinema and Theatre at the Institute of Art Studies under the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Uzbekistan, member of FIPRESCI (International Federation of Film Critics);
Gulbara Tolomushova film expert, member of the Filmmakers Union of Kyrgyzstan, FIPRESCI and NETPAC;
Justine Waddell Founder and Director of Kino Klassika Foundation ( that creates programs of restorations, publications, art commissions and events to spotlight Russian language cinema;
Karen Chan Executive Director of Asian Film Archive (Singapore,

Date / Time

Tuesday, 27 October 2020, from 16:00 to 18:00 time of Almaty.

How to join the Debate?

The debate will take place in the online format in Russian and English languages. Live streaming will be available on:
Facebook page of UNESCO the Cluster Office in Almaty in the Russian language;
Zoom (passcode: 20182343) Platform in the English language.

Previous ResiliArt Debates

"Future of the Creative Cultural Industries: Voices of Creative Industries in Central Asia" (24.06.2020);
Young Professionals of the Cinema Industry in Central Asia: Future Perspectives during and after the COVID-19 Pandemic (19.08.2020).
Concert and Cultural-Event Industry of Central Asia during the Quarantine: Survival Lessons (30.10.2020)

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