The Polish Embassy in Baku and the State Tourism Board have presented a joint project.
The project "The Polish legacy in Baku and beyond" highlights the Polish cultural heritage in Azerbaijan.
Deputy Culture Minister Sevda Mammadaliyeva, Polish Ambassador to Azerbaijan Rafal Poborski, General Director of the Azerbaijan Tourism Board Florian Sengstschmid, chairman of the Azerbaijan Union of Architects' Board Honored Architect Albay Gasimzade addressed the presentation.
Speaking at the event, Sevda Mammadaliyeva said that 30 years have passed since the establishment of the diplomatic ties between Azerbaijan and Poland.
Deputy Culture Minister spoke about the history of the cultural ties between the two countries.
The Polish Ambassador to Azerbaijan Rafal Poborski stressed the importance of relations between the two countries, the work done and the architectural gems created by Polish architects in Azerbaijan.
The Ambassador informed the participants about a short documentary film about the heritage created by Polish architects in Azerbaijan.
Two media projects "Types of Polish heritage in Azerbaijan filmed with the help of drones" and "Polish heritage in Baku and Azerbaijani regions" were also presented as part of the event.
The projects aim at further studying and promoting the cultural heritage of Poland in Azerbaijan. They also contribute to the development of tourism and attracting Polish tourists to Azerbaijan.
Next, the General Director of the Azerbaijan Tourism Board Florian Sengstschmid emphasised the importance of the cultural and architectural heritage between Azerbaijan and Poland.
He also informed the participants about the “Polish Traces in Azerbaijan” tourist brochure and the “Polish Traces” walking route prepared jointly by the Polish Embassy and the Azerbaijan Tourism Bureau.
Florian Sengstschmid noted that important work has been done to attract tourists from Poland to Azerbaijan in the near future.
Polish heritage in Baku
How did Polish architecture appear in Baku and other regions of the country? In the 19th century Azerbaijan and Poland were part of the Russian Empire, and during the rapid development of the oil industry in Azerbaijan many Poles came to Baku in search of work and a better life. Besides them, the local Polish community also included Poles who had been exiled to the Caucasus for participating in national uprisings. Although the Poles lived mainly in Baku, Polish architectural heritage can be found in other regions of Azerbaijan.
During this period, three Polish architects served at different times as the chief architect of Baku: Jozef Goslawski (1892 – 1904), Kazimierz Skorewicz (1904 – 1907) and Jozef Ploszko (1907 – 1910). And the architectural gems created by one more Polish architect, Eugeniusz Skibinski, breathed new life into the city. Among their works are the Baku City Hall, the Azerbaijan National History Museum, the Institute of Manuscripts, the Palace of Happiness, and many other luxurious buildings.