Kazakh Research Institute of Culture

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Kazakh Research Institute of Culture (Kazakh Қазақ ғылыми-зерттеу мәдениет институты; KazRIC) – one of the first and oldest research organizations in Kazakhstan.

It was established in November 10, 1933 in Almaty. At the beginning, the Institute included the Kazakh Central Archive, the Regional Museum, the State Library, and the local history bureau. History and archeology, literature and folklore, the linguistic studies, the visual arts, music, theater and choreography sectors were worked. The historians of the institute, after the studies of the archaeological monuments of Zhetysu, worked to collect the sources of the history of Kazakhstan. In 1934-1935, they collected and prepared for printing more than 100 versions of the Kazakh heroic epic, 230 fairy tales, 4 500 proverbs and sayings and other examples of oral folk art. Abay studies were developed, a special commission worked on the preparation of the “Academic Dictionary of the Kazakh Language”.

Over 300 types of Kazakh national ornaments were collected in the fine arts sector, which were studied by scientists of the institute. On September 15, 1935, the Institute was given to organize the National Art Gallery. The Institute published its “Works”, a number of literary collections, the book “The History of Kazakhstan in Sources and Materials”[1].

S.Mendeshev, T.Purgenov, S.Asfendiyarov, S.Seyfullin, S.Amanzholov took an active part in organizing the scientific work of the institute[2] .On August 25, 1936 it was transformed into the sector of history, the Kazakh language and literature of the Academy of Sciences of the Kazakh SSR. On the basis of the Institute the following Institutions were opened: The Institute of National Culture and the Institute of Language and Literature (1942) (now the Baitursynov Institute of Linguistics, Auezov Institute of Literature and Art), the Institute of History, Archeology and Ethnography (1945) (now the Valikhanov Institute of History and Ethnology, Margulan Institute of Archeology, Suleimenov Institute of Oriental Studies)[1][5].

In 1939, the Institute was renamed as the Republican Scientific and Methodological Center for Creative and Cultural Education. In 1994, the Institute was renamed again and became the Republican Center for Cultural Problems. Later, the Institute became known as the Kazakh Research Institute for the Cultural Heritage of Nomads. In 2012, alliance of the Kazakh Research Institute for the Cultural Heritage of Nomads and the Institute of Cultural Policy and Art History, the Kazakh Research Institute of Culture was established, which has been successfully operating to this day.

Since 2014, the head of the Kazakh Research Institute of Culture is Andrey Khazbulatov, PhD, Associate Professor, Honored Worker of Kazakhstan.

Today, the Institute is a leading scientific organization of the country in fundamental and applied scientific research in culture and art of Kazakhstan. Among the scientific staff of the Institute are leading scientists and practitioners in humanitarian area. Their multilateral activities in studies, preservation and popularization of cultural heritage are marked by state and public awards, prizes and diploma. Over the past 5 years, the Institute has implemented more than 100 fundamental and applied research projects in archeology, ethnography, cultural studies, art criticism, philology, and others. The scientific supervisors of the projects in archeology are: Karl Moldakhmetovich Baipakov, Zainolla Samashevich Samashev, Victor Fedorovich Zabert and others. Among the archaeological projects of the Institute, the special place for following studies: the studies of Otrar and the Otrar oasis, the monuments of Berel, the settlements of Botai and others.

In order to popularize the cultural heritage of Kazakhstan and increase its tourism, the Institute in 2018 created a Map of virtual 3D tours of Kazakhstan, which shows the country's historical and cultural heritage objects and allows virtual trips to anywhere in the country.

Since 2019, the Institute, together with the Eurasian Resources Group (ERG), has been implementing the “Restoration of historical sites of the Kultobe settlement” project. The project goal is to create a unique open-air archaeological park “Kultobe Settlement”.

The big importance of the Institute is cultural and art studies of the Scythian-Saka animal style, animalistic code of Kazakh culture, practice of worshiping sacred places and other aspects of the material and non-material cultural heritage of nomad Kazakhs.

The philological researches of the Institute are under the famous scientist – Alexander Garkavets. In 2020, the Institute finished and published in Kazakh the famous book of the Italian traveler Marco Palo “The Book about the Diversity of the World”.

The Institute is in cooperation with the famous research and restoration laboratory “The Island of Crimea”. The head of the organization is a famous restorer Krym Altynbekov.

Along the scientific projects of the Institute thee are the release of monographs, books, manuals, scientific articles and documentaries. Among the documentary and popular science films of the Institute, directed by Bakhyt Kairbekov “Under the Eternal Sky” (2016), dedicated to the 550th anniversary of the Kazakh Khanate, directed by Alexey Kamenskyi “Silk Road of Marco Polo” (2016), “The Revival of Turkistan:Kultobe settlement”(2019) and many others.

The Institute is in cooperation with UNESCO, ICOMOS, TURKSOY, IICAS, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY and others. Partnerships with the Smithsonian Institution (USA), the New York Academy of Motion Picture Arts (USA), the State Hermitage Museum (Russia), the Musical Theater “Nae Leonard” in Galati (Romania), the Ban Ki-moon Institute for Sustainable Development, the Italian Design Institute (Italy), Association of National Museums of France (France) and other international institutions.

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