Extract

Frontier Castle

High on a honey-coloured Cappadocian hillside, a remarkable Frenchman set himself the challenge of restoring the crumbling stone houses in the village of Uçhisar. Today, lovingly brought back to life, they stand tall once again. David Barchard was bewitched. Photographs: Sigurd Kranendonk

A hot-air balloon ride brought les Maisons de Cappadoce into my life. Early one summer morning in 1996, along with three intrepid companions, I had touched down on a grassy plateau above one of those Cappadocian valleys of honey-coloured cones and pinnacles.

Stepping out of the basket, we looked up and found ourselves at the feet of a genial, quizzical Frenchman with a large Kangal dog. Unperturbed by our sudden dropping in from the skies, he gracefully introduced himself as Jaques Avizou, an architect and city planner from Albi, who in 1993 had set up the Société Semiramis in Uçhisar and embarked on a programme of restoring the nineteenth-century Cappadocian houses of the village. Would we care to come round later in the day and see the houses?

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Issue 14, 1997/98 Objects of Desire
£30.00 / $41.83 / 171.13 TL
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Issue 14, 1997/98 Objects of Desire
£30.00 / $41.83 / 171.13 TL
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