Yesemek Quarry and Sculpture Workshop
Gaziantep Yesemek Quarry and Sculpture Workshop
World Heritage List Date of Submission to the Tentative: 13/04/2012
Ref. Nr: 5733
The Yesemek Open Air Museum and Sculpture Workshop is situated on the southeastern slope of the Yesemek village southeast of the İslahiye district. Yesemek was the largest quarry and sculpture workshop of the near east, from the last quarter of 2000 BC to 800 AD. The great majority of the 300 draft sculptures, unearthed and put on display in a specific order in the open air museum are the gate lions which constitute about 100 samples. The museum includes is also a group of mountain god figures which are 29 in number. Findings have revealed that the mountain gods were considered to be among the Hittite gods of Hurri-Mitanni origin. The Yesemak Quarry and Sculpture Workshop fulfills a tutorial function like no other similar place on earth in that it features a variety of samples exemplifying each of the stages of the making of statues from the cutting of stone blocks to the drafting, and eventually completion of the sculpture.