Saudi culture minister, Pope Francis welcome Saudi art in Argentina

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Time: July 02, 2019  

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Fatima Al-Banawi is one of three Saudi artists exhibiting at the Bienalsur in Argentina. (AN photo)
  • The Saudi exhibition is hosted at the Pavilion of Fine Arts at the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina
  • Work by the Saudi artists Faisal Samra, Ayman Zedani and Fatima Al-Banawi is on show at the event

BEUNOS AIRES: Work by three Saudi artists exhibited at South America’s most prestigious art show is “helping build bridges of understanding between cultures,” Saudi Culture Minister Prince Bader bin Abdullah bin Farhan Al-Saud said on Monday.

Pope Francis has also welcomed Saudi participation in Bienalsur, taking place in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The pope was briefed on the event by its director, Aníbal Jozami.

“I explained that we will do the exhibition in Buenos Aires at the Catholic University with artists from Saudi Arabia. We were talking about the importance of dialogue between Islam and Christianity,” Jozami said.

Prince Bader said: “The pope is quite right, dialogue is so important and I am delighted that our talented Saudi artists can be part of creating that dialogue.”

Pavilion of Fine Arts

Work by the Saudi artists Faisal Samra, Ayman Zedani and Fatima Al-Banawi is on show at the event.

The Saudi exhibition is hosted at the Pavilion of Fine Arts at the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina, where Francis was Grand Chancellor before he became pope.

Jozami had sent the pope a catalogue for Bienalsur and received a reply inviting him to Rome to meet the Vatican’s Culture Minister, Cardinal Ravasi. In March Jozami  traveled to the Vatican for meetings with Cardinal Ravasi and an audience with the pope.

Bienalsur, the world’s first traveling contemporary art biennale, runs until November. It begins in South America and will travel through five continents, taking in more than 100 venues across 42 cities around the world, ending at Tokyo’s University of Arts. It will visit Saudi Arabia for the first time in October 2019.

The Argentine curator of the Saudi exhibits, Gabriela Golder, said their work “seeks to bring the audience together, from small daily stories that help build an intimate narrative, to recover a singular type of memory.”

This article was first published in Arab News

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