Understanding Cultural Interfaces in the Landscape: A Case Study of Ancient Lycia in the Turkish Mediterranean

Meryem Atik, Simon Bell, Reyhan Erdogan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Landscapes by definition include interactions between man and nature. Our actions, perceptions and beliefs create and shape the landscape over time. The aim of this study was to evaluate aspects of the Lycian landscape in the Turkish Mediterranean, testing an approach based on interpreting cultural interfaces. Interfaces between past and present, between man and nature, between culture and space and between the visual and the spiritual were evaluated in relation to a selection of specific landscape elements: ancient tombs and local vernacular structures. The Lycians constructed tombs to be their houses for the afterlife using the inspiration of their actual houses. The persistence and the continuity of the original design and construction techniques utilised in the tombs, still found today in granaries, beehives and chimneys, was explored in terms of the types of cultural interface. The results of the study showed that the authenticity of the Lycian landscape is a unique agreement between past and present on land sharing the same knowledge and forms, and in this respect cultural interface can be an instinctive communication tool between pattern, process and product in understanding the associative cultural values within the landscape that are worthy of conservation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-242
Number of pages21
JournalLandscape Research
Issue number2
Early online date23 Feb 2012
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Landscape
  • cultural interface
  • Lycia
  • rock tombs
  • Turkish Mediterranean


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