TRADITIONAL farmhouses made from teak in Myanmar are among 25 structures selected for the biennial 2020 World Monuments Watch list.
The farmhouses were picked by the World Monuments Fund because it needs to be studied and documented as it is considered to be among important cultural heritage sites globally.
According to The Myanmar Times, the fund puts the farmhouses among structures of great historical and social significance that deserves a slot in the watch list.
The fund has helped conserve more than 600 sites, provide advocacy for some 800 structures, raised over USD300 million (RM12.3 million) and empower locals as employees or trainees in locations where the crucial monuments are in the last 22 years.
A statement by the World Monuments Fund stated the traditional teak farmhouses should be studied and documented because the desire for different living standards in Myanmar is causing “the wholesale disappearance of a vernacular architectural typology.”
Daw Zar Chi Minn, a professor at Mandalay Technological University, said the teak farmhouses were selected from among 250 structures submitted to the fund from all over the world.
These examples of Myanmar architecture are unique and deserve study and research, she said adding the farmhouses were found in Lezin, Bin Tha, Shar Chaung, Lewe, and Mawlaik villages in Monywa township, Sagaing Region.
“We might consider them small, but these houses have attracted great attention in the rest of the world. We have the opportunity to work for two years to conserve selected structures," said.
With the selection, the fund will assist Myanmar, she added.
Zar Chi Minn, who specialises in wood carving, has been trying to introduce woodwork from around the country, including Kachin, Shan, and Naga regions.
The World Monuments Fund is a leading independent organisation devoted to saving the world’s treasured places.
For more than 50 years, working in more than 100 countries, its experts have applied proven techniques to preserve important architectural and cultural heritage sites.
Other sites on the 2020 World Monuments Watch list include Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, and structures in Togo, Chile, Canada, Egypt, Georgia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.