First of all, most of the items we sell are from Central Asia. In former times the old Central Asian communities were mostly tribes of nomads. These tribes wandered about the huge plains between Turkey and Mongolia. The strength of the nomads was that their individual life was for the benefit of the community. In the last 150 years most nomads settled down in villages; only a few tribes still travel during summer.
Most of the handmade products we sell at Shirdak are made in the old tradition of the Uzbek and Kyrgyz tribes. In spite of most of the products we use daily, is in the hand made products we sell, the attention of the maker still sensible.
In the last century of the development of our consumer society, we gained a lot in our individual emancipation. But at the same time we lost the group we belonged to.
Due to technical inventions like the small computers, iPads and smartphones we can survive everywhere on our own now. As a nomad we can travel were we want, virtually or in reality. But we lack the customs, habits and rituals which were common in the traditional societies.
What we see in modern society is that every individual has to make their own habitat; we all have to create our own traditions. What we notice in our shop is a big interest in the old communities: what did they make, how is it made, what is the meaning of the symbols used?
People buy our products because they like the story, they like the patterns, colors, designs, which are not only esthetic but also have a meaning. They pick out the products that suit their personality the most. The buyer brings home a unique product with a story, carefully made with the attention of the artist.
With the achievement of a high degree of individual freedom, we are longing for the attention from others….