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Vlach Embroidery Recognised as Serbia’s Intangible Cultural Heritage

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The National Committee for Intangible Cultural Heritage, on December 21st, added six new elements to Serbia’s National Register of Intangible Cultural Heritage. 

These additions include the Vlach embroidery technique “Štampujit”, saddler craft, leather garment making, tossing fire torches, playing the tambouritsa, and the Epiphany Cross swim, joining the existing 57 elements of Serbia’s “living heritage.”

This registration follows initiatives by the Ethno network and its member associations, which previously succeeded in registering Stapar and Sjenica-Pešter kilim weaving, double-spun sock knitting, and Bosniak lace ojice.

Supported by the Ministry of Culture and NALED, the Ethno Network backed the local associations “Misija kreativa” from Kladovo, led by Slavica Boraković, and “Nego” from Negotin. These groups partnered with local institutions to preserve the Štampujit technique through research, documentation for registry entry, presentation, promotion, and knowledge transfer.

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Dusanka Botunjac, an academic painter and applied artist, was pivotal in creating the file for this element’s registry entry. Botunjac, a guardian of the motifs of Negotin Krajina and a promoter of authentic Vlach heritage, also serves as a member of the art council, educator, and designer for the Ethno Network.

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