Crafts Festival 2019

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28-30 June 2019, Akhaltsikhe Fortress


The International Festival of Traditional Crafts Workshops is an annual festival launched in 2018 held in Akhaltsikhe Fortress, which brings together the craft makers from all over Georgia and abroad to show the diversity of crafts fields and to promote master craftsman and their skills.

Samtskhe-Javakheti and in particular Akhaltsikhe was one of the most significant centers of handicraft in Georgia, distinguished by the abundance of crafts workshops. The idea of the festival, on one hand, draws upon the existing rich resources in Georgia and generally, in the Caucasus and on the other hand, on the increasing tourist interest towards the traditional craftsmanship and interactive artisanal workshops. The increasing economic potential of craft master-classes can be seen in the examples of several successful traditional craft workshops across different regions of Georgia and the Caucasus.

In addition, Akhaltsikhe Fortress, the medieval ensemble extensively rebuilt in 2011-2012 with its vast territory and number of stone buildings, ponds, and colonnaded pavilions is a perfect location for the festival. By bringing together local and invited artisans in the medieval setting, the festival aims to transform Akhaltiskhe Fortress into a vibrant and fascinating destination, where the visitors will have the opportunities to observe and participate in the making process, get acquainted with the works of the finest artisans in the region and the variety of crafts techniques.

The Festival is implemented by:

  • Georgian State Museum of Folk and Applied Arts
  • Georgian Heritage Crafts Association


The festival was supported by:

  • The Ministry of Education, Science, Culture, and Sports of Georgia
  • USAID Zrda Activity in Georgia
  • GIZ/IBIS Project in Georgia
  • Akhaltsikhe Municipality
  • The Adjara Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sports
  • Zugdidi Municipality
  • Dusheti Municipality


In 2019 The Festival was held on 28-30 June and included the following activities:

  • Open-Workshops - master-classes of different craft fields (ceramics, woodcarving, natural dies, carpet/rug weaving, felt making, jewelry, musical instrument making, etc.) by Georgian and invited craft makers from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Romania, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan, etc.
  • Crafts Fair
  • Educational programs for Kids
  • Exhibition from the Museum collections
  • Collaborative Installations by Artisans and Contemporary Artists
  • Public lectures on Traditional Crafts
  • Night shows and concerts
  • Special Info-Tour for Tourism agencies will be organized to boost the potential of artisanal workshops as a destination.