The land in between

Orient meets Occident, Script meets Identity, Yesterday meets Tomorrow
8daw study trip to Armenia from 5 to 13 September 2024

When it comes to the future of education, who would think of a small country in the Caucasus? In the intermediate kingdom of Armenia, characterised to this day by 2,000 years of conquest and occupation, the most amazing ideas are emerging around the TUMO Center for Creative Technologies. How can children really learn something for life alongside school ... and at the same time fundamentally change a society that is still characterised by the USSR/Russia? Why was this country one of the first to establish a state religion and a completely new writing system in the first centuries after Christ? It is certainly not only due to the outstanding Armenian brandy or the legend that wine actually has its roots here ...

On this study trip, we visit friends and colleagues who show us their everyday private and professional lives. A search for traces between the catacombs of the Matenadaran State Library, the TUMO digitisation project for the preservation of Armenian cultural sites and Lavash bread baked in earth ovens.


Introduction to the trip

A Zoom conference will take place on Tuesday, 11 June 2024 from 5:30 to 7:30 pm am Berlin-time, during which the tour guides will provide a more detailed introduction to the programme and answer questions in German language. If you are interested, please send a short email to Marina Dietweger: dietweger@gmx.de


A cooperation event of the newsletter magazine eight days a week - Streifzüge durch den Wandel (short: 8daw) with the TUMO Centre for Creative Technologies in Yerevan, the GRANSHAN Foundation e.V. and the Typographische Gesellschaft München e.V.



Living Programme Planning

Current status of programme modules with provisional allocation to days


Thursday, 5 September 2024
The hotel is booked for arrivals from 3:00 pm the day before, 4 September, so that you can move straight into your room after arriving in the early hours of the morning: sleep for three hours first.
At noon
The fixed meeting point is the first lunch together at 12:00 noon, where the detailed itinerary is also introduced.
Afternoon
First guided tour of Yerevan
In the evening
Short lecture on the history of Armenia during dinner


Friday, 6 September 2024
In the morning
Visit to studios and ateliers, architecture, design and advertising, modern and traditional
In the afternoon
ABC: introduction to the Armenian language and the Armenian alphabet
Workshop with Ruben Malayan: writing in Armenian and using calligraphy to develop the ideas of everyday life into the visionary
((Location still unclear – possibly in one of the studios visited in the morning))



Saturday, 7 September 2024
In the morning
Guided tour of the Mesrop-Mashtoz Institute for Ancient Manuscripts, or Matenadaran for short. The curator, senior researcher and GRANSHAN juror Davit Ghazaryan will give us an insight into the collection and the restoration laboratory: How is the very special Armenian red actually made? If all goes well, a particularly interested small group will then be allowed to visit the catacombs, where books from the early days of book printing can be found, as well as the Armenian national treasure, the Echmiadzin Gospels from 989, set in an ivory binding from the 6th century.
From noon
GRANSHAN Conference & Ceremony: deep insights into Armenian and Georgian typeface creation and culture; with the presentation of GRANSHAN diplomas to the Armenian winners of the 13th GRANSHAN Type Design Competition 2023/2024 and the awarding of the "GRANSHAN Lifetime Honour Medal". Probably in the Academy of Fine Arts.
In the evening
Banquet for the travellers, speakers and award winners (sponsored by Kochan & Partner)

Sunday, 8 September 2024
During the day
Drive via Oshakan with its garden of letters to the highest mountain in Armenia, Aragats. Here, even in September, it is cold enough to eat kash, the Armenian national soup made from cow's feet boiled in water for at least one night. Depending on your taste, with a lot or a little less garlic and accompanied by vodka. On the way back, stop at the Alphabet Monument, a bizarre landscape of letters made of stone in the Artashavan area, erected to mark the 1,600th anniversary of the Armenian alphabet. Return to Yerevan at approx. 16:30.
In the evening
Vertical tasting of well-known and lesser-known Armenian brandies during dinner (optional)


Monday, 9 September 2024
Full day
Visit to Gyumri and the local TUMO branch: presentation of the digitisation project for the preservation of Armenian cultural sites
In the evening
possibly an artists' evening with readings, for example by Ruben Grigorian and Ashot Grigoryan

Tuesday, 10 September 2024
In the morning
Architectural tour in Yerevan, during which the cultural-historical development can be traced, from the Middle Ages through the USSR era to the present day. Visit to the Museum of Architecture
In the afternoon
Visit to the College of Design and the Parajanov Museum
In the evening
Dinner with wine tasting of Armenian wines (optional)


Wednesday, 11 September 2024
Morning and afternoon
Swimming trip to Armenia's largest lake, Lake Sevan, with a visit to the Sevanavank peninsula with the monastery of the same name and its two churches (UNESCO World Heritage Site);
Large lunch with fresh fish at the invitation of the 8daw team
In the afternoon
Free time at leisure


Tursday, 12 September 2024
In the morning
Guided tour of the National Gallery
In the afternoon
Visit to the TUMO Centre in Yerevan in full operation
afterwards
TUMO conference: Interested participants of the trip give an insight into their work, current commitments from Veronika Burian and Boris Kochan


Friday, 13 September 2024
During the day
Drive to the Geghard cave monastery (UNESCO World Heritage Site) and the Roman-Hellenistic temple of Garni. Lunch with an Armenian family. We also watch the production of lavash (thin flatbread). If you wish, you can take a narrow path down into the gorge to the Symphony of Stones.
In the evening
Joint final dinner with music

Saturday, 14 September 2024
Transfer in the early hours of the morning, most flights depart between 3:00 and 6:00 am. The hotel is booked until Saturday 14 September, so check-out is possible by 11:00 am at the latest.


Organisational matters


Hotel
Hotel Avenue 30
reserved with single and double rooms incl. breakfast

Travel period
Thursday, 5 September 2024 to Friday, 13 September 2024
Meeting point on 5 September 2024 at 12:00 in Yerevan: lunch together
Farewell on 13 September in Yerevan with a dinner together

Arrival/Departure
As most flights are night flights, the schedule usually means a departure to Armenia on the night of 4 to 5 September, with most flights arriving in Yerevan between 3:00 and 6:00 am.
Departure is on the night of 13 to 14 September – most flights depart sometime between 3:00 and 6:00 am, all local time.

Flight example with Aegan via Athens
Outbound flight
Munich (MUC) to Athens (ATH) 6:25 pm to 9:55 pm (2:30 hrs)
Change in Athens (ATH) 1:55 hrs.
Athens (ATH) to Yerevan (EVN) 11:50 pm to 3:20 am* (2:30 hrs) *next day
Total journey time 6:55 hrs.

Return flight
Yerevan (EVN) to Athens (ATH) 4:20 am to 6:15 am (2:55 hrs)
Change in Athens (ATH) 2:20 hrs.
Athens (ATH) to Munich (MUC) 8:35 am to 10:15 am (2:40 hrs)
Total journey time 7:55 hrs.
Price in Economy on 26 April via Opodo € 384


Direct flights from Germany only with Lufthansa from Frankfurt, journey time then between 4 and 5 hours, price on 26 April approx. 725 €; most connecting flights go via Warsaw and Vienna. The low-cost airline WizzAir also flies from Vienna at relatively favourable conditions.

Transfers
For transfers from the airport to the hotel and back, we will offer a shuttle service for small groups (starting with 4 persons). For individuals, we ask that you use taxis yourself – please note that the prices are often completely inflated. It is essential to agree a fixed price of the equivalent of 5 to 10 euros in advance.


Visa
For German travellers in May 2024: Entry is possible with a passport and a visa on arrival.

Time zone
Time difference to Germany during European summer time is 2 hours (8:00 am in CEST is 10:00 am in Armenia).

Financial


Participation fee
Prices per person
9 travelling days, 10 overnight stays


Price per person in a double room € 1,550
Price per person in a single room € 1,700
Price per person in a suite for two € 1,650

We can offer discounted prices for subscribers to the newsletter magazine eight days a week (8daw), for members and supporters of the GRANSHAN Foundation e.V. and for members of the Typographische Gesellschaft München e.V. (tgm):
Price per person in a double room € 1,450
Price per person in a single room € 1,600
Price per person in a suite for two € 1,550


Whether we have to charge VAT on these prices is currently being clarified.

The tour price includes

  • 10 nights with breakfast at Hotel Avenue 30

  • On-site programme with local, mostly English-speaking tour guide

  • Four excursions by coach (Oshakan/Aragats, Gumrij, Lake Sevan and Geghard) and entrance fees

  • Two lunches and one dinner, some others will probably be sponsored

  • Airport/hotel transfers for groups of 4 or more people

  • Audio sets for guided tours

  • Participation in two conferences: GRANSHAN on Saturday, 7 September and TUMO conference on Thursday, 12 September


Participants
The trip can be organised for a minimum of 12 participants and is limited to a maximum of 20 people.


Tour guide
The tour guide is Marina Dietweger and Boris Kochan in conjunction with our Armenian friends, most of whom do not speak German but do speak English.


The flights must be planned and booked by the guests themselves. The travel organisation only covers the programme including hotel accommodation on site.

Lunch and dinner are paid for by the travellers themselves – with the exception of a welcome lunch, the fish lunch at Lake Sevan, the Kash meal and the farewell dinner as well as any other sponsored meals. For all other meals, we have organised table reservations for the entire group for one meal per day in the past. It has proved to be a good idea for the group to share the costs in solidarity.

Potential cancellation of the trip
due to travel warnings or insufficient number of participants
When booking flights, it is important to choose a fare where cancellation is possible. We do the same with the hotel. The situation in Armenia is currently stable. Only the border area with Azerbaijan and Nagorno-Karabakh cannot be travelled to, see also the travel and security advice from the Federal Foreign Office. As the conflict with Azerbaijan may of course flare up again, we must all be prepared for the fact that the trip may have to be cancelled at short notice in this case.

We recommend that you take out travel cancellation insurance and international health insurance at a cost of around 60 € per person: Europe Assistance



Registration

Please register by 30 June 2024 at the latest by sending a binding email to Marina Dietweger: dietweger@gmx.de
Please note that the full travel price is due in advance and must be paid by 15 July 2024 at the latest. Please understand that we will have to charge the full participation fee for cancellations after 15 August 2024 and half the participation fee for cancellations from 15 July to 14 August 2024.

The financial settlement of the trip will be handled by the new organisation of the newsletter magazine eight days a week (8daw): FLUX Foundation e.V., Wittelsbacherstraße 11, 80468 München. This has developed from the EDCH Foundation e.V.

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