I spent two weeks in Qazaqstan with Cross Cultural Chairs.
A group of 16 people from Europe and Qazaqstan came together to learn about Qazaq culture and design a saddle in this workshop.

Matteo Guarnaccia invented @crossculturalchairs to research social and cultural differences through the ways of sitting. Together with Zhanna Ee he developed the project further and they created this workshop.
The saddle was the chair of the Nomad, a life style that was present until the dawn of the Soviet Union. Qazaqstan is the 9th biggest country in the world by size but unknown to many people, in the western world at least, so they decided to create a workshop to teach learn about Zhanna‘s home country with the goal to design 5 saddles in the end.

We dove head first into culture the first week: visiting markets, artisans, museums and contemporary Art(ists), thanks to Vladislav Sludskiy, in and around Almaty.
Followed by a visit to a small village where people live with, close to and from livestock and agriculture. The „ayul“ life.
Of course two weeks go by in a blink of an eye but I feel we got to experience the beauty of this country in all its complexity.