From April 29, 2021, the Aigine CRC team, together with traditional practitioners and the country’s archaeologist, resumed field research to study the petroglyphs of the Issyk-Kul region. Field trips take place in Ak-Bulun village of Ak-Suu region, in Ala-Bashy village of Ton region and in Ornok village of Issyk-Kul region. The search and finding of “Kyrgyz” petroglyphs, which are distinguished by a special form and lines of transmission of drawings, were remarkable. The research team also found several balbals dating back to the 6-9th centuries AD, which were scattered across the highlands. Our team, with the help of local residents and shepherds, was able to raise and place these balbals and hold an awareness event with the head and employees of the local government about possible ways to preserve and protect balbals as valuable historical monuments.

In order to better understand the nature and meanings of petroglyphs, the Aigine CRC team will work to combine scientific and traditional approaches to understanding and studying rock paintings. Field research trips are part of the “Secret Power of Petroglyphs” project supported by WISN.