International Arts Education Week 2021

1 June 2021

UNESCO Almaty and The Village Kazakhstan mark International Arts Education Week with seven videos about the arts in seven countries

International Arts Education Week runs from the 24th to the 30th of May. The celebratory week was proclaimed by UNESCOs 36th annual general conference in 2011 in a resolution which also called on member states to support and develop arts education.

The arts play an important role in human development and are also an indispensable component of education, relating the stories of cultures and civilisations through the ages and into the modern world. The arts promote cooperation, creativity and imagination and bring culturally diverse societies together. Through the study of world arts, we can gain an understanding of cultural diversity and contribute to the building prosperous societies around the world.

UNESCO Almaty and The Village Kazakhstan filmed seven interviews with prominent art historian Alexandra Kudryashova, in which she describes and explains the significance of seven important works of creative and cultural heritage from seven artists in seven countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

The Village Kazakhstan and UNESCO Almaty are sharing the videos on their social media this week. The works of art covered in the videos are:

Scandal in the Café
Painting Sergei Kalmykov Kazakhstan
Kalmykov is an important figure in Kazakhstani art history. His work was influenced by a number of styles including surrealism, expressionism, metaphysical painting, the avant-garde and futurism. This work was completed in 1940 and makes use of very delicate rosy-brown tones. Kalmykovs work is unusual in that it synthesises spontaneity and intellectualism, in a style some have referred to as science fiction.

The White Steamship
Novella Chingiz Aitmatov Kyrgyzstan
One of the renowned authors most important works, The White Steamship explores the themes around the confrontation between good and evil. The storys seven-year-old protagonist is a young Kyrgyz boy who lives with six adults in a forest reserve. Aitmatov lays out the issues the boy faces as he grows up and begins to discover himself, all the while posing important philosophical questions for the reader.

Takht-i Sangin settlement and Temple of Oxus
Archaeology architect unknown Tajikistan
The ancient Takht-i Sangin settlement is one of the few structures remaining from the Greco-Bactrian period which still contains monumental works of art from ancient Bactria. Excavations began at the site in 1976, when an ancient temple dedicated to the river god Oxus was discovered in the very centre of the settlement. The Temple of Oxus has been very well preserved and is an outstanding example of ancient monumental art.

The Pomegranate Chaikhana
Painting Alexander Volkov Uzbekistan
Set in a traditional chaikhana, or tea house, this work depicts a traditional tea party. Hidden within the carefully crafted scene of this ceremonial occasion, however, are a number of clues towards the paintings cultural meanings. Painted in 1924, the work currently hangs in Moscows Tretyakov Gallery. Volkovs work brings together features from orientalism, Art Nouveau, cubism and the abstract.

The Tabriz School
Miniature painting multiple artists Azerbaijan
The Tabriz School arose in the 17th and 18th centuries in Azerbaijan among a small group of talented artists devoted to painting miniatures. Sultan Muhammad was the schools leading painter and determined the style of painting over several decades. A unique double miniature in the prominent poet Jami's manuscript, the Golden Chain, is linked to him. The diptych presents a hunting scene, unusual in its scale of landscape and the number of figures. The miniature shows the work of a highly experienced master who was able to artistically combine a number of scenes into one coherent and highly decorative composition.

Georgian filmmakers and directors
The names of several Georgian directors are already considered among the most influential figures in world cinema - Tengiz Abduladze, Otar Iosseliani, Sergei Parajanov and Rezo Chkheidze among them. But contemporary filmmakers have also gained significance, including Nana Ekvtimishvili, writer and co-director of My Happy Family (2017), and Tinatin Kajrishvili who directed the 2018 film Horizon. Through its cinematic offerings, Georgia displays its inner sentimentality to depict the countrys centuries-old traditions alongside the desire to move with the times in the modern world.

Architecture multiple artists Armenia
Also known as a cross-stone, khachkars are a distinctive form of medieval religious-cultural monument that are found only in Armenia. Taking their name from the Armenian words for cross (khach) and stone (kar), khachkars feature as their central symbol a cross, blossoming like a tree or flower as a symbol of new and eternal life. Khachkars were placed at sites where churches and monasteries were to be erected.

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