- Takes note that Romania and the Republic of Moldova have nominated the art of the traditional blouse with embroidery on the shoulder (altiță), an element of cultural identity in Romania and the Republic of Moldova (No. 01861) for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity:
The art of the traditional blouse with embroidery on the shoulder (called altiță) is an essential part of Romanian and Moldovan folk dress for men and women. It juxtaposes a simple cut with rich and colourful ornamentations that are stitched using complex sewing techniques. The blouses are white and made of natural fibres (flax, cotton, hemp or floss silk), and the complex stitch combines horizontal, vertical and diagonal seams that result in a specific pattern and texture. The styles and techniques vary according to the region and the wearer's age, as well as to the skills of the women who create the blouses. The motifs and ornamentation are also varied: from geometric and stylised registers to organic shapes, and from sombre to vivid colours. Traditional blouses with altiță are made entirely by hand, and recent attempts to mechanize certain steps and to simplify the ornamentation and techniques constitute deviations from tradition. The craftsmanship is exclusively female and generally passed on within families, although some organizations, museums and schools organize camps and courses. Today, interest in creating these blouses is steadily increasing, with the practice viewed as a means of relaxation and of affirming one's national identity and maintaining visible ties to the past.
- Considers that, from the information included in the file, the nomination satisfies the following criteria for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity:
R.1: The traditional blouse with altiță is made with rich ornamentations which are stitched in a palette of diverse and harmonious colours. The bearers and practitioners include women sewing in households, craftswomen, people working with non-profit organizations, members of clubs and folk bands, among others. Knowledge of the element is transmitted within families and through formal education (such as in arts and craft schools and for-profit organizations). There are also creative camps, summer courses and competitions that encourage transmission of the corresponding knowledge and skills. The traditional blouse with altiță is a strong identity marker and commonly worn as ceremonial or festive clothing, including for community events, rituals and stage performances. It is worn by people of all ages and from different social and occupational backgrounds. The file explains that the craftsmanship of blouse-making is exclusively female. Although the file does not explain the role of men in the practice and transmission of the element, the submitted photos accompanying the file do show men wearing the traditional shirts.
R.4: The nomination explains the participation of practitioners in Romania, members of associations and craft workshops in preparing the nomination file and safeguarding plan through documentation work, field research and interviews. In the Republic of Moldova, the communities concerned participated in seminars, trainings and scientific conferences and supported the preparation of the nomination file. The file includes a set of letters indicating the free, informed and prior consent of individuals, associations and craft workshops in both submitting States. There are no customary practices which prevent access to the element and there are aspects of craft secrets that relate to local and regional specificities. While it was noted that the file contained an imbalance of information between the two submitting States regarding the participation of the communities, the overall information provided in the file satisfies criterion R.4.
R.5: The element is included in the Inventory of Elements of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Romania and the National Inventory of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of the Republic of Moldova. The inventories are maintained by the Ministry of Culture of Romania and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Research of the Republic of Moldova, respectively. In Romania, the element was identified and inventoried by a network of ethnographers, craftswomen, seamstresses from rural areas, and other workers and people passionate about the craft. In the Republic of Moldova, communities, groups, NGOs and cultural and research institutes were involved in the inventorying process through a series of responses and field research.
- Further considers that, based on the information provided by the States Parties to the Committee at its present session, the following criteria for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity are satisfied:
R.2: The file explains that, at the local, national and international level, inscription of the element will encourage communities to safeguard the element and encourage greater appreciation of the craftsmanship associated with the element. It will raise awareness on other intangible cultural heritage elements that are practiced in a close connection with the cultural meanings and the social context entailed by this craftsmanship (various textile crafts, family and community events, rituals and feasts, etc.), especially by promoting the concept of intangible cultural heritage as an important source of identity for its bearers. At the international level, the inscription will inspire other stakeholders to document and safeguard practices of making traditional attire. The element merges deeply rooted and appreciated tradition with constant innovation and re-creation, which may stimulate a rich dialogue and new collaborations among individuals, groups, communities, researchers, cultural promoters, entrepreneurs, and others.
R.3: The file explains that the communities are involved in past and current efforts to safeguard the element, such as participation in exhibitions, fairs, cultural events and workshops. The file provides information on the proposed safeguarding measures, that have been suggested during the nomination process by bearers and practitioners of the element - communities, groups and individuals of all ages and genders in both countries. In order to appropriately support the safeguarding efforts that will be undertaken by local communities, craftspeople associations, NGOs, educational and research institutions, the State Parties launched a national safeguarding plan to closely monitor and update the information about the element, to provide support for bearers in organizing interactive workshops to raise awareness and transmit their knowledge and skills to new apprentices, to host an online platform for acknowledging the activities of practitioners, the local events and projects promoting the element both in schools and to the civil society. The communities will continue to be involved in the design and planning of all safeguarding measures, and their feedback and contributions will be strengthened in both countries.
- Decides to inscribe the art of the traditional blouse with embroidery on the shoulder (altiță), an element of cultural identity in Romania and the Republic of Moldova on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity;
- Encourages the States Parties, when submitting future nomination files, to provide more detailed explanations on the gender-specific roles concerning the nominated element;
- Further encourages the States Parties to ensure the widest possible participation of the communities concerned in planning and implementing safeguarding measures and in the inventorying process;
- Also encourages the States Parties, when submitting future nomination files, to provide more detailed explanations on the social functions and cultural meanings concerning the element, instead of focusing on the descriptions of the product associated with the element.