VOLUNTEER CAMPS IN KAZAKHSTAN IN 2014

 

During the summer and autumn of 2014, Laboratory of Geoarchaeology (Faculty of History, Archeology and Ethnology, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University) is organizing archaeological investigations covering all periods from Palaeolithic to Modern times all over Kazakhstan. The programme of work consist mainly in mapping, land and aerial photography, collection of paleodata for analyses. Open-air lectures in the history, archaeology and geoarchaeology of Central Asia and visits of local sites will be included. Sessions will take place between July and October 2014 and are 15 days in duration. Volunteers and students of archaeology are welcome to join us. The participation fee is ˆ250 (or 300 USD) per week and academic credit is given by the Kazakh National University. Interested volunteers and students of archaeology should contact the LGA to ask for full details on the various survey and excavation opportunities on offer.

Renewed information are also available on the Laboratory of Geoarchaeology web site: http://www.lgakz.org 

Or you can check the updated announcement of our volunteer camps on the Fieldwork webpage of the Archaeological Institute of America.

 

There will 3 expeditions occurring from July 01, 2014 - October 31, 2014
 

1) Chu-Ili mountains (Petroglyphs sites), 10-24 July; 15-31 September; 7-21 October

2) Tarbagatai mountains (Petroglyphs and Bronze-Iron Age sites), 7-21 August

3) Geoarchaeological documentation of Aschybulak (East of Almaty), 1-7 July; 1-7 September

 

Application Deadline: Not applicable


 

1. BRONZE AND IRON AGE OF PASTORAL SOCIETIES, SURVEY OF THE CHU-ILI MOUNTAINS AND NORTH-WEST BALKHASH REGIONS

Director:

Renato Sala

Site/Period:

Bronze, Early Iron, Wusun, Turkic

Volunteers:

5-10

Experience required:

No previous experience necessary

Excavation dates:

10 July to 21 October 2014 in 3 sessions

Application deadline:

ASAP

Minimum stay:

Two weeks

Cost: 

USD300 per week

Fare: 

Not included

Accommodation:

Provided

Food: 

Provided (vegetarian and non-vegetarian)

Vaccination:

Anti-tetanus recommended

Passport/visa: 

Valid passport; for visa contact organiser 6 weeks in advance.

The Chu-Ili mountains are smooth undulations of a maximum altitude 1500m in a semi-desertic landscape south-west of Lake Balkhash. Their springs and oases constituted a refuge and a corridor for cultures from Palaeolithic to ethnographic times, represented archaeologically by cemeteries, houses, steles and, most predominantly, petroglyphs. From the Middle Bronze to the Turkic periods the area was a crossroads for tribal migrations reflected in the character and range of petroglyphs, which now represent the most important monuments of the area and are among the most important rock art sites of Central Asia and Siberia.

Fieldwork will be directed by specialists from the Laboratory of Geoarchaeology.  During this survey, the camp will be nomadic. You will work various sites including the recently discovered petroglyph sites of the southern border of the Chu-Ili range (site of Kuljabasy) and the disseminated petroglyphs sites located in the gorges around the Balkash lake.

The objective of this camp is to continue the survey and documentation of the petroglyphs sites existing in the region and to map the archaeological monuments. Volunteers will be introduced to modern techniques of preliminary geographical study using satellite, aerial photography and detailed maps. Documentation will be provided by traditional and new advanced methods (GIS, digital-video). The ecological features of the landscape (summer-winter camps, tracks etc.) will be studied.

Geological and trial trenches will be excavated to collect paleosoils for dating and paleoenvironmental reconstruction. The weather is extremely dry. Volunteers should bring a sleeping bag, a mat, a sweater, some strong shoes, and a flashlight.  Further tours can be organised at the end of the fieldwork.

 

 

Useful reading   

 Sala R., Deom J.-M., 2005 Petroglyphs of South Kazakhstan. Almaty. (Available in English and Russian,  link to sale online: Alibris.com. ).

 Aubekerov B.J., Rogozhinskii A.E., Sala R, 2004 Pamyatniki Kazakhstana (Rock art sites of Kazakshtan) in: Rogozhinskiy A (ed) (2004) Rock Art sites of Central Asia: documentation, conservation, management, community participation. Almaty. (Available in English on CD-Rom, contact ispkz@yahoo.com for purchasing).

 

 

 Contact:   Jean-Marc Deom, Laboratory of Geoarchaeology (Faculty of History, Archeology and Ethnology, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University), av.al-Farabi,  71, 4th Floor, room 4-8, 050060 Almaty, KAZAKHSTAN

 

Tel:   +7 701 760 92 89

Fax: 

Email:  ispkz@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

2. BRONZE AND IRON AGE OF PASTORAL SOCIETIES, SURVEY OF THE TARBAGATAI MOUNTAINS IN SOUTHEAST KAZAKHSTAN

irector:

Renato Sala & Jean-Marc Deom

Site/Period:

Bronze, Early Iron, Wusun, Turkic

Volunteers:

5-10

Experience required:

No previous experience necessary

Excavation dates:

7-21 August 2014

Application deadline:

ASAP

Minimum stay:

Two weeks

Cost: 

USD300 per week

Fare: 

Not included

Accommodation:

Provided

Food: 

Provided (vegetarian and non-vegetarian)

Vaccination:

Anti-tetanus recommended

Passport/visa: 

Valid passport; for visa contact organiser 6 weeks in advance.

The Tarbagatai mountains constitute a narrow range stretching east-west from China (Xinjiang) into Kazakhstan with peaks at an average of 2400 m. It is located at the north of the Jungarian gate between the Tienshan and the Altai in Southeast Kazakhstan. Endowed with regular precipitations in a generally arid environment, the mountains have always constituted an important shelter for Bronze Age to modern pastoralist communities of the region. Homeland of the last nomadic empire of Eurasia (Jungar khanate 1634–1758), the Tarbagatai conceal numerous ancient settlements and unique petroglyphs that didn’t receive yet a systematic documentation.  Fieldwork will be directed by specialists from the Laboratory of Geoarchaeology.  During this survey, the camp will be nomadic. It will work in various gorges including the recently discovered petroglyph sites on the northern slopes in the Kargoba river.

The objective of this camp is to continue the survey and documentation of the petroglyphs sites existing in the area, to map the archaeological monuments and to partially excavate a Bronze Age village. Volunteers will be introduced to modern techniques of preliminary geographical study using satellite, aerial photography and detailed maps. Documentation will be provided by traditional and new advanced methods (GIS, digital-video). The ecological features of the landscape (summer-winter camps, tracks etc.) will be studied.

Geological and trial trenches will be excavated to collect paleosoils for dating and paleoenvironmental reconstruction. The weather is generally hot during the day and cool in the evening, rains are also frequent till September. Volunteers should bring a sleeping bag, a mat, a sweater, some strong shoes, a rain coat and a flashlight.  Further tours can be organised at the end of the fieldwork.

  

Useful reading   

 Sala R., Deom J.-M., 2005 Petroglyphs of South Kazakhstan. Almaty. (Available in English and Russian,  link to sale online: Alibris.com. ).

 Aubekerov B.J., Rogozhinskii A.E., Sala R, 2004 Pamyatniki Kazakhstana (Rock art sites of Kazakshtan) in: Rogozhinskiy A (ed) (2004) Rock Art sites of Central Asia: documentation, conservation, management, community participation. Almaty. (Available in English on CD-Rom, contact ispkz@yahoo.com for purchasing).

Samashev Z. et alt, 2010 The monumental art of East Kazakhstan (online reading: http://archeo-astana.kz/monograph/shygys/

  

Contact:   Jean-Marc Deom, Laboratory of Geoarchaeology (Faculty of History, Archeology and Ethnology, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University), av.al-Farabi,  71, 4th Floor, room 4-8, 050060 Almaty, KAZAKHSTAN

 

Tel-GSM:   +7 701 760 92 89 

Fax: 

Email:  ispkz@yahoo.com

 

 

 

     

3. COMPLETE GEOARCHAEOLOGICAL DOCUMENTATION OF A PIEDMONT VALLEY IN SEMIRECHIE (ASCHYBULAK)

Director:

Renato Sala & Jean-Marc Deom

Site/Period:

All periods

Volunteers:

5-10

Experience required:

No previous experience necessary

Excavation dates:

 1-7 July; 1-7 September 2014

Application deadline:

ASAP

Minimum stay:

Two weeks

Cost: 

USD300 per week

Fare: 

Not included

Accommodation:

Provided

Food: 

Provided (vegetarian and non-vegetarian)

Vaccination:

Anti-tetanus recommended

Passport/visa: 

Valid passport; for visa contact organiser 6 weeks in advance.

The Tienshan foothills at the west of Almaty consist of several important river valleys (Talgar, Issyk, Chilik) that constituted the core of the Saka (East Scythians) confederations during the Iron Age. Here are found extended kurgan (tumulus) complexes including big and smaller barrows. Among the most famous Saka cemeteries of the region are those of Issyk (tomb of a golden man), Turgen and Chilik. As a rule, these kurgan complexes are located along the main branches of the alluvial fan. Among other monuments found in the same area are ancient and medieval irrigation channels, mixed agro-pastoralist farms and small forts.

The more arid valleys located between the river Turgen (at West) and Chilik (at East), fed by smaller streams, haven’t yet been researched till nowadays. Even if they represent a poorer habitat, they are located at the north and at the closest distance of the biggest summer pasture of the Almaty region (jailau of Asy, 2500 m asl) that played an important role among the stockbreeding communities of Semirechie from the Bronze Age till the Ethnographic period.

The fieldwork will focus on the valleys of Aschybulak and Kiikbai and consist in a complete geoarchaeological documentation of the two valleys starting from the irrigated fields and habitats in the piedmont plain till the alpine pastures in the mountains. Volunteers will be introduced to modern techniques of preliminary geographical study using satellite, aerial photography and detailed maps. Documentation will be provided by traditional and new advanced methods (GIS, digital-video). The ecological features of the landscape (summer-winter camps, tracks etc.) will be studied.

Geological and trial trenches will be excavated to collect paleosoils for dating and paleoenvironmental reconstruction.

 

Useful reading   

Deom J.-M., Sala R. 2012. ‘Geographical, paleoecological and sociopolitical factors of the areal distribution of the Saka kurgans of Semirechie’ in  Historic cultural heritage and modern culture. Proceedings of the International seminary 30 November 2012, Almaty, p. 28-34.

 Rosen A., Chang C., Grigoriev F. 2000. ‘Palaeoenvironments and economy of Iron Age Saka-Wusun agro-pastoralists in southeastern Kazakhstan’ in : Antiquity, 74, p.611-623.

 

 

Contact:   Jean-Marc Deom, Laboratory of Geoarchaeology (Faculty of History, Archeology and Ethnology, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University), av.al-Farabi,  71, 4th Floor, room 4-8, 050060 Almaty, KAZAKHSTAN

 

Tel-GSM:   +7 701 760 92 89 

Fax: 

Email:  ispkz@yahoo.com