De la obiectele de patrimoniu la peisaj
Moştenirea culturală, schimbările sociale si protejarea vestigiilor istorice
Ne-am obişnuit să relaţionăm termenul “cultura tradiţională” de zona rurală şi modelul de viaţă oferit de aceasta, gândind mediul rural ca valoros păstrător al tradiţiei culturale.
Spre sfârşitul secolului XVIII, o puternică explozie demografică a generat masive emigrări în Lumea Nouă, fenomen care, împreună cu reorientarea societăţii spre industrializare, a determinat deplasarea unei importante părţi a populaţiei spre zona urbană. Tocmai aceasta “dezrădăcinare” a generat ulterior interesul pentru aşa numitul “loc de baştină”, a cărui tradiţie culturală trebuia păstrată pentru posteritate. Elementele culturii tradiţionale, adică “vechiul” trebuiau astfel legate de elementele contemporane, adică “noi”; dar ce este nou şi ce poate fi considerat vechi într-un peisaj, mai cu seamă în condiţiile în care, în ultimii 50 de ani, o mare parte a terenurilor agricole au fost împădurite?
De aici, marea problemă a conservării peisajului istoric cu clădirile şi vechile sale structuri, şi întrebarea: cum putem păstra dimensiunea istorică a peisajului?
Primele acte oficiale legate de protejarea vestigiilor istorice în Suedia datează din secolul XVII (1666), când s-a emis prima proclamaţie a vechilor monumente sub prerogative regale şi s-au catalogat primele clădiri (încă din a doua jumătate a secolului XVI, regele John al treilea restaurase bisericile din oraşul Sigtuna motivând că sunt cele mai vechi biserici şi trebuie păstrate).
Amintesc, spre exemplificare, de căsuţa botanistului Carl Linneaus (1707) din satul Rashult care este monument istoric (deşi căsuţa în care s-a născut omul de ştiinţă a ars, construcţia de cărămidă roşie ridicată in 1731 este asociată cu Linneaus şi considerată monument) şi care este localizată într-o zonă împădurită. Revenirea la peisajul original, pentru a întregi autenticitatea monumentului, ar implica serioase defrişări – pentru a face vizibil terenul arabil prezent în acea vreme – adică tăierea unor copaci ce au mai bine de 100 de ani. Astfel apare conflictul între istorici şi botanişti, aceştia din urmă considerând acţiunea o ameninţare la adresa biodiversităţii.
Sistemul legislativ, rezervaţiile naturale, peisajele istorice şi rezervaţiile culturale
Păstrarea moştenirii culturale a unei naţiuni este responsabilitatea statului şi a consiliilor locale.
În Suedia, la nivel naţional, activează Consiliul Naţional al Patrimoniului, care are în primul rând rolul de a distribui fondurile alocate, de către parlament şi guvern, acţiunilor de conservare a patrimoniului.
Acţiunile propriu-zise se planifică în colaborare cu Administraţiile regionale: in Suedia acestea sunt în număr de 21 şi sunt în strânsă legătură cu Consiliul Naţional al Patrimoniului.
Fiecare regiune are şi un muzeu care primeşte anual fonduri pentru acţiuni de promovare a patrimoniului cultural şi de susţinere a conservării acestuia.
Din punct de vedere legislativ, cadrul statutar al protecţiei valorilor culturale suedeze constă în câteva legi ale parlamentului însoţite de reglementări guvernamentale.
Principalul instrument legislativ pentru monumente este Legea Patrimoniului Cultural (1988) sub incidenţa căreia intră protecţia siturilor şi monumentelor arheologice, a clădirilor, bisericilor şi obiectelor de patrimoniu. Legea Proiectării si Construcţiei (1987) conţine reglementări referitoare la protecţia patrimoniului cultural în relaţie cu proiectele de sistematizare şi urbanizare.
În ceea ce priveşte peisajele de importanţă naţională, acestea sunt identificate şi protejate de Codul Mediului, însă nu este uşor să se evidenţieze în mod explicit motivele pentru care o zonă sau alta este considerată patrimoniu naţional. De aceea, simpla descriere a “conţinutului” peisajului nu este suficientă, ci trebuie însoţită de argumente.
Parcurile naţionale (în Suedia în număr de 30, dintre care cele mai mari sunt Sarek şi Padjelanta) şi rezervaţiile naturale (însumând in jur de 5% din teritoriul ţării) sunt, de asemenea, protejate prin lege.
Un alt sistem, relativ recent, de păstrare a moştenirii culturale implică protecţia zonelor cu valoare atât biologică şi economică (pajişti, păşuni, terenuri agricole), cât si cu valoare istorică (vechi garduri de lemn, ziduri din piatră, rigole, cariere de piatră, vechi hambare şi fânare). Orice mediu natural care conţine o mare diversitate de elemente cu valoare biologică şi istorică este considerat valoros. Înainte de intrarea Suediei în Uniunea Europeană, în cadrul unui program numit Conservarea Peisajului, autorităţile regionale erau însărcinate cu depistarea, inventarierea şi studierea peisajelor istorice valoroase. Fermierii care deţineau sau locuiau pe acele porţiuni de teren erau încurajaţi – verbal, dar şi financiar – să întreţină peisajul sau obiectele de valoare care făceau parte din acesta. În 1995, la intrarea Suediei în Uniunea Europeană, remunerarea în schimbul întreţinerii acestor zone a fost interzisă pe motiv că toţi fermierii sunt egali, iar legile nu trebuie să-i avantajeze pe cei din zonele cu valoare istorică. Astăzi, ei sunt încurajaţi să încheie acorduri de întreţinere a zonelor istoric valoroase în concordanţă cu reglementările politicii agricole a Uniunii Europene, iar din cei 40.000 de fermieri suedezi existenţi la ora actuală, circa 12.000 s-au alăturat deja acestui sistem.
În afara rezervaţiilor naturale şi a peisajelor cu valoare istorică despre care am vorbit, guvernul alocă fonduri (astăzi până la 2 milioane de USD) şi pentru aşa numitele rezervaţii culturale, până acum în număr de 15, toate proprietate privată.
Dintre acestea, Lillhärjĺbygget, situată pe înălţimile Härjedalenului, este o aşezare sălbatică, biciuită de ierni lungi şi grele, lipsită de facilităţile lumii moderne (electricitate, căi de acces), în care mai trăieşte o singură familie; o singură familie al cărei mod de viaţă este, astăzi, unic în Suedia: membrii ei sunt fermieri şi supravieţuiesc din vânzarea brânzeturilor, a cherestelei şi, o dată pe an, a unuia sau doi viţei. O asemenea economie unicat, bazată de mica producţie proprie, a făcut din Lillhärjĺbygget rezervaţie culturală.
Un alt exemplu este Västeräng: o fermă tradiţională cu extraordinare clădiri istorice, emblematică pentru peisajul rural din regiune. Proprietarul acesteia nu poate, însă, investi în noi hambare şi grajduri pentru animale iar cele vechi, unele chiar din secolul XVI, nu mai fac faţă solicitărilor actuale. Din fericire, Västeräng, împreună cu ferma de vară situată la circa 10 km de sat, a fost declarată rezervaţie culturală, fondurile alocate fiind, pentru început, investite într-un nou grajd.
A treia zonă interesantă, dar care nu a devenit încă rezervaţie culturală, este Svaneholm, situată într-o regiune cu productivitate mare în care, în secolul XVIII, cea mai mare parte a pământului era proprietatea nobilimii. În 1790 baronul Rutger Macklean, proprietarul Svaneholmului, a iniţiat o reformă a pământului care a devenit un model pentru tot peisajul agricol al Suediei anilor 1800. Chiar dacă este vorba despre un peisaj “modern”, fără valori naturale, Svaneholm păstrează încă planul original al celui care, într-o manieră simbolică, a iniţiat revoluţia agrară în Suedia.
From Historic Objects into Landscapes
CULTURAL HERITAGE AND SOCIAL CHANGE
Protecting traditional culture in a world that is undergoing fast and sweeping changes is a question that can be looked at from several different perspectives. One important factor in this process is the relations between urban and rural areas.
As a rule, the term “traditional culture” has a demo-geographic meaning, in the sense that traditional culture is often understood as something tied to, and rooted in, the rural areas and its patterns of life. For this reason one could say that if traditional culture is to be preserved in other forms than as museums, for example, the society must act to enable people to continue living and working in rural areas.
The mid and late 1800s was a period of great change in Sweden. Steep increases in the population created a desire for land in a society whose economy mainly depended on agricultural production. When the homeland no longer could support its peoples, many chose to emigrate. Approximately 1.2 two million Swedes left the country, mainly for the New World. To understand the impact of this the number it has to be seen in relation to the contemporary population, which included just about 4 million people. At the same time, the broad reorientation toward an industrialized society was taking place. And this, among other things, brought with it the relocation of a large part of the population from rural areas to towns.
It is perhaps in this context that the growing interest in the, lets say ones native-place and its traditional culture, really awakened for the first time, with local historical societies and museums to save what could be saved for posterity.
Another question of cultural heritage is highly linked to the idea of something new in relation to something old. This was a reality in the end of the 1800’s and is a reality today. This is particularly connected to the rural landscape. But, what is old and what is new in a landscape?
Sweden is a forest-county, but has not always been that during the history. Evidence of ancient farming is to bee found in most forests in the south and middle Sweden. Big parts of the country have also lost considerable areas of agriculture land in the last 50 years. Most of this land has again been pine forests after an agricultural period of many decades. Actually the image of Sweden as a forestland is in parts of the country not much more than 150 years old.
A huge preservation problem is all this historic landscape, including its buildings and old structures. How much and particularly what must, and can, be preserved, to keep the historic dimension in the landscape, for our children and for following generations?
A third and fundamental problem is the treatment of this. According to the European habitat-directive “Natura 2000” Sweden have to protect old forests. But most of these so-called old forests are, as we can see, not old in a historical point of view. Some generations ago they were agriculture land.
After this introduction, it may be interesting to look at how Swedish legislation has handled problems concerning the protection of cultural heritage in the past.
Public protection of historic remains has a long tradition in Sweden. The first Cultural Heritage Act goes back to the proclamation of old monuments and antiquities under royal prerogative from 1666. It is the oldest in the world.
Through this proclamation remains were protected against influence of different kind, damage and destruction. And such sites and objects as they were understood then were seen as the physical reminders of the greatness of Sweden and its people in earlier times, and included royal castles, prehistoric graves, runic stones and ruined buildings among other things.
It is interesting to note that the earliest legislation primarily dealt with the contemporary Swedish great power and the monuments were used in arguments for Sweden territorial claims in Europe during this time. This historic view was also greatly supported by Swedish historians of the time.
I will give you an example: Already in the second part of the 1500s the king John III restored the ruined churches of the town Sigtuna, believing that these churches was the oldest in Sweden. Houses in Dalecarlia, connected to the king Gustav Vasa and the civil war around 1520, became one of the first projects for the new Cultural Heritage Board in 1666. Some of them became National Historic Landmarks or, let’s say, listed buildings, from 1668 and on. The Crown used tax-brakes to promote the preservation of these buildings in future. One can say that this shows two early examples of using public money to promote preservation of historic buildings – a system that is still used today.
The Cultural Heritage Act has always been good for protecting buildings but not for the environment around the building. The problem with a historic building in a historic environment is shown in next example:
The very famous Swede, the botanist Carl Linnéaus was born in a small vicarage, called Rĺshult, in the county of Smĺland in 1707.
The house that he was actually born in does not exist today. It was lost in a fire a few years after his birth and the red actual house was built 1731. But to this day, the red country house at Rĺshult has been associated with Linnéaus and represents a monument to him. It became a museum in 1935, and in 1977 it was protected under the Cultural Heritage Act, as a listed building.
Protecting a house like this has been very simple. Everybody - house owners, neighbours, historians, politicians etc. - would agree that this house is of outstanding historical interest. However, this house is also situated in a very charming historical landscape. Rĺshult is located in a forested area without good prospects for profitable agriculture. A lot of the small fields, meadows and grazing land have therefore been almost “left over” during the 1900s. For us today, Rĺshult is a good example of a traditional rural landscape from the old days before the agrarian revolution.
Even if Rĺshult, with its memories of Linnéaus – which could be viewed as of international interest, the Cultural Heritage Act cannot be used to protect this environment. The Act is focused on monuments and objects only. The Act mentions nothing about historical landscapes. However, it has been possible to protect landscapes like this in another way – by using the old Nature Protection Act.
In Sweden we have always divided the environment in two groups: cultural or natural environments. This has in one way been a successful method for the protection of landscapes, as long as both biologists and historians agree. But this method can also lead to two sub-groups: a large team of biologists with plenty of money, connected to international agreements, and a small team of historians without money. This can lead to conflicts.
For example, for pedagogical reasons historians want to show how the landscape in Rĺshult was used, and looked like, when Linnéaus was born. They want to restore the landscape. To do so one would have to dispose of most of the trees in the graze land and in the old meadows, even though some trees are more than 100 years old, and open up parts of forest where there are remains of small fields that have not been in use for a hundred years. In Rĺshult this situations lead to conflicts with botanists and the old Nature Protection Act, because of the threat to biodiversity.
FROM POLITICAL AIMS TO OPERATIVE ACTION
How does the legislation-system look like today?
all I will say that safeguarding the cultural heritage has always been the
responsibility of the State, today the government and its agencies, but it is
also the responsibility of the local councils through the planning
The National Heritage Board
The National Heritage Board, were I have worked for, is the central preservation authority on questions concerning the cultural heritage. It has a large responsibility for transforming political aims to operative action.
Organizing and channelling economic funding from the Parliament and the government allotted for cultural heritage purposes is a big part of the work. The National Heritage Board can also direct the use of this funding by pointing to specific areas of activity.
An important part of this work, to get the political aims to operative action, is undertaken together with the County Administrations.
There are 21 counties in Sweden and each of them has an Administration Board with a cultural heritage department. The connections between The National Heritage Board and these departments are strong.
Each county has also its own museum, which work with different aspects of cultural heritage questions, from giving advice and support to individuals and authorities, about historically important buildings and ancient monuments, questions on the documentation of traditional culture and spread of information about it. County museums also receive economic means annually for this purpose.
The statutory framework for the protection of heritage values consists of several acts of Parliament, supplemented by government regulations.
The main instrument for monuments, or say objects, are still the Cultural Heritage Act, from 1988, which includes protection of archaeological monuments and sites, listed historical buildings, churches and export and restitution concerning objects of cultural importance.
The Environmental Code, from 1999, proclaims protection and care of valuable environments as one of its aims. And it also provides the possibility of creating cultural reserves.
The Planning and Building Act from 1987 provides the legal tools primarily for the 289 local councils in Sweden to look after cultural values.
This act contains rules as to how the cultural heritage should be identified and safeguarded in connection with planning procedures and in the screening of planning applications.
Cultural environments in the legislation system
In the Environmental Code there are existing definitions for areas of cultural heritage, pointed out by National Heritage Board, called “Environments of national importance” or conservation areas.
The idea is that there are landscape areas of a national importance, and that the regional and local administrations are supposed to take care of these areas, by planning according to the Planning and Building Act.
There are many such landscapes, some are big and some are small, all with very different sets of values, but all of them are particularly valuable. For these areas it is necessary to explain the meaning of this national importance for cultural heritage. But that is not always easy. The method used for many years was to describe, lets say, the contents of the landscape. We stated the content in terms of churches, runic stones, ancient graves, old houses etc. but we sometime failed to state the motivation for this national importance clearly enough.
I will give you a example of the problem of an old description. It could bee like this: ”In the area of national interest for cultural heritage there are: a Viking runic stone, the well known church from the 13th century, the vicarage with traditional red painted buildings from the 19th century, a parish hall from 1790 and a poor house from 1800. Close to church, by the runic stone, there is a stone bridge dating back to from around 1800.”
What should a planner do when he, or she, reads this? Where is the national interest and hove do you preserve it? The description did not give the motivation for this. For example, did the bridge and the runic stone have anything to do with what we were trying to explain? Not at all maybe.
We are good in telling the content and what to be found, what to see in the areas but we have problems to communicate with people, apart from ourselves. To explain the system, the complex, why A leads to B and further into C is not easy. It is the complex that should be preserved and it is therefore necessary to give the motivation for the national importance. A new type of description was necessary.
The new one should be like this: “ The Reason for National importance: A complete parish centre. The expression of the national importance: A church, a vicarage, a parish hall and a poor house. Other valuable objects, not connected to the National interest: A runic stone and a stone bridge.”
The first National Parks were founded in 1909, and were the first in Europe. Today there are 30 and the biggest are Sarek and Padjelanta with an area of 200 000 hectares each.
Most of the aims of the National parks give priority to nature values. The Environmental Protection Agency decides and suggests new parks. The decision to found a park is made by the Parliament. National parks are state-property.
Apart from the national parks, Sweden has a great number of other protected areas, so called nature reserves. A total of about 5 % of the country’s territory is protected as reserves. There are many new reserves coming up and most of them are for protecting forests and become state property.
In addition to the nature reserves, we now have, as I already mentioned, a new tool; to establish cultural reserves. Money has been provided by the government for the maintenance, the first years about 500 000 USD and today up to 2 mill. USD. The money is given to the National Heritage Board who distributes it to the county administrations.
Today there are about 15 cultural reserves and in the future we will be able to find about another ten new each year. All of the cultural reserves are private property.
I will soon return to the cultural reserves, but first I will give you a summery of one of the most important, sort of new, preservation system; the Swedish way of benefits in the common European agriculture policy. Because without farmers there will be no agricultural landscapes to preserve, in the future.
Common agricultural policy
In the agricultural policy Sweden have had two supporting systems, one before and one since we became member of the European community.
Before, around 1990 we started a new agro-environmental program called Landscape Preservation. First of all, we had to explain what we meant by historic landscapes. We let the regional authorities make an inventory, or survey, for a program that pointed out rural landscapes of great value, with both biological and cultural values.
Farmers in these areas were contacted and we made suggestions about landscape maintenance and they were offered money as compensation for taking care of historic objects of high value in a certain way. But when we became a member of the European Union 1995, we were not allowed to do this. Now the rules must be the same for all farmers, not only for them in the special areas.
Now, we focused on common cultural values in fields, meadows and cattle grazing lands. We are looking not only for rich biological values, but also for old structures in form of elements like tree lines, wooden fences, stone walls, stone dumps, ditches, old surplus hay barns etc.
Our idea is that environments that contain a combination of high quantity and high diversity of these elements are considered being valuable. We made a list of about 50 landscape- elements. These are more common in some parts of the country; so it is not a completely fair system in an economic benefit way, but still quite good for maintenance the historical structures. The farmers are encouraged to make agreements about landscape maintenance in accordance with the EU agricultural policy guidelines (CAP).
There are about 40 000 farmers in Sweden and today 12 000 of them have joined this system. If we look at the future, we believe that about 20 000 farmers should join the system. If that happens I think most of the money will be contributed to the same areas as it used to do before 1995.
Finally, I will show you three examples of cultural reserves Lillhärjĺbygget, Västeräng and Svaneholm.
The first one is Lillhärjĺbygget. It is situated in the highlands of Härjedalen. The climatic is fairly hard, with long winters with snow from October to May, and short summers; the period of growth is only between midsummer and end of august. The settlement is a result of the steep increases in the population during the 1700s. To colonize this land was the alternative to emigration.
In the picture you can see the huge swamps and the high mountains in the background and the little settlement in the center. There are now road to Lillhärjĺbygget. To get there you have to walk 12 km or skiing in the winter. No electricity, no TV!
There have been a lot of small agriculture settlements like this in Sweden but they are all gone since the 1950s. The strange thing with Lillhärjĺbygget is that a family still live as farmers here. Their income comes from traditional cheese-production; timber and once a year sell one or two calves.
This picture shows the summer farm, situated 3 km from the main farm. The family moves to this place for 4-5 weeks every summer with the cattle.
An economy like this, based on small domestic production, is not just rare in Sweden today, it is absolutely unique. Lillhärjĺbygget became a culture reserve this year. Public money will be used, for example, to pay for a helping hand.
The second one is Västeräng. It is situated in Hälsingland and is a traditional farm with extra ordinary historic buildings and a good example of traditional rural landscape in the region.
Even if the farmer and his family own the whole village of tree farms, it is not enough at all on the modern common market. The fields are not bigger than about 50 hectares and the buildings are to old for modern stock racing or housebound and the family economy cannot pay for new animal facilities.
Out in the fields there are about 30 small barns for storing hay. Some of them are very old. This one is from around 1550.
Also in Västeräng the have a summer farm, situated about 10 km from the village. Even the summer farm is a part of the culture-reserve, as well as the whole village domain.
Without extra ordinary help there would soon be an end of the traditional farming in Västeräng. But Västeräng became a culture reserve this year, which will benefit the farming in the future. As a starter, public money will be invested in a new cow-house.
The third one is Svaneholm in Skĺne and is a different example and has not yet become a cultural reserve. This is in a highly productive region were the nobility and the gentry owned most of the land in the 1700s.
The owner of Svaneholm estate, baron Rutger Macklean, started in the 1790s a land reform that became a pattern for whole agriculture landscape in Sweden in the 1800s. Svaneholm became a totally planned landscape, very much America in one way.
Even if this is a “modern” landscape, without natural values and used all the way into the asphalt, it also contains among other things the original plan, easy to see if you can read the grammar of the landscape. In a symbolic way Macklean started the agricultural revolution in Sweden. In that context, I think there could not be a better place to create a cultural reserve then in Svaneholm.