For half a year, the painstaking work of a large group of scientists, bibliographers, graphic artists, architects went on to immerse us in the world of the history of Tatar book literature through modern methods of visualization and information. On an area of 300 square meters, documents were placed, most of which were presented to the general public for the first time.
“The books stored in our fund contain the genetic code of the Tatar culture,” said Madina Timerzyanova, director of the National Library of the Republic of Tatarstan, at the opening of the exhibition.
– Searching for answers to the questions “Who are the Tatars, where should we go?” always continue. Comprehension of the content of the new exhibition gives an understanding of what is already embedded in the culture and traditions of our people. ”
The exhibition contains several sections, from the era of the Golden Horde to the Soviet period. Each section of the exhibition shows not only the continuity of different periods in the development of the Tatar book culture, but also serious problems, dramatic breaks, alternative movements.
The exhibition space is organized in such a way that the visitor, walking through it, is like reading a book. Explanations, comments, visual content are so deeply immersed in the information field that there is no need for excursion support.
The amazing facts of the past are still with us today. As, for example, the symbols of the Middle Ages – the image of a leopard, a knot of happiness, goodwill “boilers bulsyn” (“be happy”). And during the heyday of handwritten culture in the eighteenth century, you can see signs of globalization: the Tatars rewrote Persian texts on Dutch paper and left notes in them in Russian.
Comprehension of the content of the new exhibition gives an understanding of what is already inherent in the culture and traditions of the Tatar people. These are powerful roots. If we know them, then we will be able to design tomorrow. The unusual section “Magic and Medicine” gives an idea of how the Tatars borrowed and interpreted the medical treatises of the Indo-Persian culture.
In the “Composition on Dreams” you can read the interpretation of dreams, in medical magic texts are given combinations of letters and numbers that affect human health. The beginning of the last century allowed the Tatars to choose between Arabic graphics, Latin and Cyrillic. Typography in the Arabic script reached its climax, the Latin alphabet was associated with modernity, and the Cyrillic alphabet united the Tatars with the entire Soviet culture.
The exhibition exhibits books by Tukay, a typewriter, essays about the enlighteners of that time. On the shelf of international publications, there are studies about Tatar culture published in different countries. Modern ways of presenting artifacts – mapping, spatial installation, audio excerpts from radio broadcasts and an original photo zone – make the exhibition exciting not only for the younger generation, but also for people of other ages.
According to the curator of the exhibition, Alfrid Bustanov, an extensive program of its promotion is planned with lectures, a summer school, a “manuscript decoding laboratory”, and a media art festival. The plans are to invite Tatarstan artists to get acquainted with the exhibits and the subsequent organization of an exhibition of their works. Work is underway to introduce audio accompaniment, as well as to place QR codes for quick search of information by guests of the “Global World of Tatar Books”. The exhibition will run until November.