a joint project of AVASA and IIMAS

     Urkesh is one of the oldest cities in history.
     Its origins date back to six millennia ago. For three millennia, it emerged as an important political and religious center of a still scarcely-known population: the Hurrians. Afterwards, it remained abandoned for the next three millennia. Until today.
     Our excavations had begun to bring it back to light, when the war in Syria abruptly stopped us. But our connection with the site was not broken. On the contrary: it has strengthened.
     "Urkesh beyond Urkesh" wants to show how an archaeological site becomes, so to speak, larger than itself when it offers a new reading of its past, which is recognised as relevant for the present times.

     Our commitment has been made possible by the support of the Cariplo Foundation and the Kaplan Fund, which have laid their trust in the soundness of our project, and have thus stimulated the active interest of other co-founding bodies that have joined our enterprise.
     The section on archaeology provides information on the archaeological site – in particular on the main results of the excavation campaigns and the pre-war commitment to facilitate the visits on the site.
     Our effort to communicate the results of the excavation work att all levels has surely remained alive, with a constant accent on the profound values that emerge spontaneously from a careful confrontation with the past, and with archeology in particular.
     The main result has been the increasingly active involvement of local communities, with whom we have put in place an active and innovative education and awareness program, which is taking dimensions that would appear as extraordinary in every situation, but even more so in this tragic period of war.
     It is on this basis that we can look at the future with confidence. We will not have to start from scratch. On the contrary, development finds solid roots in these years of work that we have carried forward. The concept of "sustainability" takes on a very special significance: development will be sustainable, because it has not only been sustained but also profoundly expanded in these years of maturation.
     Ours is a program that really starts from the bottom: it is based on the substance of things. Although we had no time and means to look for a particular attention, the "Urkesh model" is nevertheless establishing itself as a paradigm, and the section on public image illustrates the most relevant examples.
     Finally, we offer everyone the opportunity to help us. To capture the attention, we thought of an equivalence of one euro for each year of life of our city, this ancient Urkesh that is actualy so alive in all its vitality. The co-founders offer the equivalent of the site's six millennia of life. But just as every year of this long trajectory was essential to get to where we are today, also every single euro will be essential for the successful outcome of our great project.