May 29, 2018 - There are many reasons to visit Kotor, but if the road leads you to this pearl of medieval architecture in the coming days, in the foyer of the Cultural Center Nikola Đurković, you will have the opportunity to visit the exhibition "The World of Terraced Landscapes", one of the most striking components of the Mediterranean landscape. And not just the Mediterranean. If we are talking about the natural and cultural area of Kotor, the terraced gardens of Prčanj, Stoliv, Dobrota, as a combination of natural and anthropogenic factors, were one of the reasons the whole area would be on the list of important heritage for humanity in 1979.
The exhibition "The World of Terraced Landscapes", which opened last night in Kotor, brings presentations of Italian and world agricultural landscapes, as well as examples of terraced gardens that are still legible in the parts of Boka. Under the pressure of development without a strategy, which has brought Boka Bay over-built and uncontrolled construction, over the last 20 years, much of this segment of cultural heritage has been irretrievably lost. This fact was one of the motives of the Community of Italians of Montenegro that, in cooperation with Italia Nostra and the Center for Sustainable Spatial Development Expeditio from Kotor, which is in the final stage of the realization of the project with the same theme - Agriscape&ME, organized this exhibition. The realization of the exhibition was supported by the Italian region of Veneto, which continuously assists Kotor and Boka Bay in the preservation and restoration of cultural heritage, which was largely formed in almost 400 years of the patronage of Venice over Kotor (1420-1797).
"Terraced gardens are one of the most recognizable forms of agricultural landscape, the testimony of long history and the interaction of people and land. The cultural and historical area of Kotor has been listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1979 because it is recognized that its exceptional universal value is reflected in the "quality of architecture and harmonious integration with the cultivated terrestrial area on the edges of tall rocky mountains" Sandra Kapetanović from NVO Expeditio said.
The exhibition was opened by the deputy ambassador of Italy in Montenegro, Antonella Fontana, and apart from Kapetanović, on the joint project, architect Alexander Dender, president of the Italian community of Montenegro, and Adelmo Lazzaro from Italia Nostra association, also spoke.
Traditional agrarian landscapes have emerged throughout history through the various agricultural activities of people in a given area. These landscapes contribute to the creation of local cultures and identities as well as the value of the entire cultural landscape and represent the basic resources of a territory. In Montenegro today, the value of traditional agricultural landscapes is not sufficiently recognized, traditional landscapes are not officially protected and are mostly modified or devastated and inadequately managed. Accelerated loss of agricultural landscapes leads to the loss of an important part of the cultural landscape as well as sustainable agriculture.
The Agriscape&ME project, as well as the exhibition "The World of terraced landscapes", which can be visited until June 8, are intended to alert these processes and to foster further cooperation because preserving the landscape is a challenge facing the whole Mediterranean. The exhibition is accompanied by a valuable catalog of "A world of terraced landscapes".