Dry Stone Wall Extravaganza Kicks Off on Murter Island!

By 16 September 2017

In case you've spent any time travelling around Croatia, especially on the coast and islands, you might have noticed multiple beautiful examples of dry stone walls. Called suhozid in Croatian, the traditional building technique of stone-stacking without any binding material used has been popular in these parts for hundreds of years, resulting in many indestructible stone walls that still remain untouched by time.

The Dragodid association has been working on promoting both the heritage and the craft for many years now, and thanks to their incessant efforts, the Ministry of Culture inscribed the dry stone building technique into the list of protected intangible cultural heritage of Croatia in 2016.

Another valuable initiative aiming to preserve the craft comes from Murter island: the third edition of the project named Dry Stone Wall Extravaganza (Suhozidna Ekstravaganca) will take place on the Colentum archaeological site from September 16 to October 16, reports Argonauta.

The main goal of the project is to gain a wider knowledge and raise awareness about the importance of cultural heritage as a shared European value, one that has outstanding potential to be used as a tool in sustainable development of rural communities. It also aims to further develop the concept of volunteer work and inform young citizens about various opportunities provided by the Erasmus+ programme.

Fifteen students coming from five European countries will thus spend a month on Murter island, working on various interesting facets of the project to further raise the value of the archaeological site. The volunteers will be mentored by an archaeologist from the Šibenik City Museum who'll be coordinating the project to ensure all activities are carried out by following professional standards.

Major part of the work will focus on building a new dry stone wall along the newly renovated archaeological beach, restoring a part of an ancient Roman villa and doing research in another villa that's submerged in the sea. Experienced dry stone wall builders from the National Park Kornati will also lend a hand to the young volunteers.

Students from Turkey, Bulgaria, Spain, Italy and Poland will introduce themselves to the local community on September 26, as the date marks the European Day of Languages that will be celebrated on Rudina Square in Murter. The volunteers will present various segments of their cultures, including languages, traditional cuisine, dance, music, and folklore costumes. The Dry Stone Extravaganza is carried out with financial support provided by the Agency for Mobility and EU Programmes, as part of the programme Erasmus+.