Contraste saisissant. Beau parterre d’invités à l’ouverture du Mauritius International Art Fair. C’était jeudi 8 août au soir au Caudan Arts Centre. Parmi les personnalités présentes, outre le président de la République par intérim, il y a les ministres Anil Gayan, Pradeep Roopun, le leader de l’opposition, entre autres.

Le lendemain matin, les professionnels avaient rendez-vous à 10 heures pour discuter de Modelling the art and cultural ecosystem in Mauritius. Pas de décideurs en vue, ni de représentant des divers ministères. Alors que l’ambition affichée par l’Economic Development Board – partenaire de ZeeArts dans l’organisation de la première édition de la MIAF – est d’échanger sur le thème des arts et de la culture comme pilier du secteur touristique. Visiblement, discuter stratégie artistique : cela n’intéresse personne au niveau des autorités.

Mais pas des invités internationaux : Stratégie à deux voix. Celles de Manal Ataya, directrice générale de la Sharjah Museums Authority, Émirats arabes unis, responsable de 16 musées, et d’Amaryllis Georges, Art and engagement educator au Louvre d’Abu Dhabi. En ouverture du Mauritius International Art Fair, qui s’est tenu jusqu’au 11 août, elles ont donné des pistes pour que les arts et la culture deviennent des piliers du tourisme.

Manal Ataya, directrice générale du Sharjah Museums Authority, Émirats arabes unis : «User de la diplomatie culturelle»

Miser sur ce qui fait l’authenticité. Cela ne sert à rien d’imiter d’autres modèles en pensant qu’ils auront le même succès, mais cela ne marche pas. C’est en ces termes que Manal Ataya a exprimé son sentiment sur les efforts à mener pour faire décoller le secteur des arts et de la culture. Mettre en avant son intérêt économique et en faire un pilier du tourisme. Manal Ataya, directrice générale du Sharjah Museums Authority, Émirats arabes unis est responsable de 16 musées.

Première étape : l’introspection. «Quelles sont les valeurs dans lesquelles vous croyez ? Que voulez-vous que les gens ressentent et apprennent quand ils viennent à Maurice ? »

À Sharjah, la décision a été prise – par l’émir régnant – de célébrer l’art islamique. «Nous sommes différents des autres émirats», insiste-t-elle. Contrairement à Dubaï qui est intéressé par le marché de l’art international.

Pour identifier les forces, cela passe par la valorisation. «Ne pensez jamais que votre culture et vos valeurs valent moins que celles des autres. Ensuite, il faut user de la diplomatie culturelle». C’est la façon dont vous montrez votre culture au reste du monde. Et l’image que vous projetez au reste du monde.

Ensuite, il s’agit de trouver des alliés stratégiques. Manal Ataya a cité le British Council et l’Alliance française, qui sont souvent, «prêts à inviter un artiste britannique ou français à venir chez vous travailler avec des groupes locaux». Des échanges dans l’autre sens sont dès lors envisageables. Il faut alors explorer les possibilités de bourses, de subventions, «notamment avec des pays avec lesquels vous avez des liens historiques».

Selon Manal Ataya, il ne faut pas s’arrêter au manque de financement. «Parfois j’ai l’impression que quand vous avez de l’argent, vous vous dispersez dans plusieurs directions. Et les projets ne sont pas pérennes. Be creative with your money.»

Amaryllis Georges, Art Educator, Louvre Abu Dhabi «Créer un district de l’art»

«Comment éduquer une population qui n’est pas habituée à voir une statue à moitié nue d’Apollon ?» C’est l’un des défis qui se sont posés à l’implantation du musée du Louvre à Abu Dhabi. Mais durant la première année d’exploitation, ce musée qui a ouvert ses portes le 11 novembre 2017 a accueilli, «plus d’un million de visiteurs», a affirmé Amaryllis Georges, Art and engagement educator au Louvre d’Abu Dhabi. Elle était l’une des intervenantes du MIAF 2019.

Idée maîtresse partagée par Amaryllis Georges : la création d’un district de l’art. Un quartier agréable, regroupant les galeries et musées, un quartier qui soit facile d’accès. Un quartier où il y aura toujours quelque chose à voir, à faire, avec des animations, des ateliers. Une vie artistique et culturelle.

 

Source: https://www.lexpress.mu/article/358871/mauritius-international-art-fair-pistes-pour-quarts-et-culture-deviennent-piliers

credit: Le Express Mu

Posted on October 12, 2019

On the first day of the inaugural Mauritius International Art Fair (MIAF), Manal Ataya gave opening remarks ahead of the Key note by HE Mr. Paramasivum Pillay Vyapoory, G.O.S.K. Acting President, Republic of Mauritius

Press Release
Sharjah: The Director General of Sharjah Museums Authority was invited as a special guest to a landmark event in the sphere of cultural, artistic and creative industries in the island nation of Mauritius.

On the first day of the inaugural Mauritius International Art Fair (MIAF), Manal Ataya gave opening remarks ahead of the Key note by HE Mr. Paramasivum Pillay Vyapoory, G.O.S.K. Acting President, Republic of Mauritius.

Addressing a crowd of over 200 attendees, Ataya highlighted the similarity between the UAE and Mauritius in terms of how tourism is increasingly playing an integral role in building the economy.
During her speech, Ataya focused on culture as a great asset and a source of interest for tourists and residents alike.

Ataya stressed that cultural tourism enables countries to invest in preserving heritage and historical sites. It also paves the way for establishing more museums and cultural foundations that help strengthen people’s national pride and connection to their culture and identity.

“Sharing one’s culture with others widens human understanding and cultural dialogue which all lead to better social cohesion and harmony,” she said.

Due to her extensive experience in developing museums and working in community engagement, Ataya was also a key speaker during the “Art and Cultural Ecosystem in Mauritius” panel discussion the following day.

Other panelists included Prof at the Sorbonne University Dr. Didier Wong Chi Man, Tristan Breville, Director of the Museum of Photography in Italy; and Salim Carriumjee, Director of the Institute of Contemporary Art Indian Ocean (ICAIO).

Held on August 10 at the newly opened Caudan Arts Centre, the session brought together art professionals from all over the world to combine efforts in shaping strategies that would help develop the ecosystem of art and culture in Mauritius.

The event highlighted the country’s unique cultural heritage, the challenges facing its museums and cultural industries as well as the means to support and transform them into concrete economic achievements and benefits.

Participants discussed the social role of museums and the need to increase their attractiveness, the importance of education, government and individuals’ support in promoting culture, sponsoring and providing funds.

Enhancing the cultural scene in the island nation and the important role of arts and culture in building creative economies was also discussed during the event.

“The invitation of Sharjah Museums Authority to this fair and to other international events reflect the leading position of the UAE in general and that of the Emirate of Sharjah in particular in the fields of art and culture,” Ataya said.

She said that such events create partnerships and enhance engagement with other cultures while providing opportunities for constructive intercultural dialogue.

Ataya shared her experience in maximizing museums impact in the UAE and the emirate of Sharjah in terms of community engagement and cultural exchange where major events like Sharjah Art Biennial, the Sharjah International Book Fair, Sharjah Heritage Days and Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival, to name a few, have become real attractions and helped boost the emirate’s position as a culture capital for its citizens, residents and for its tourists.

Using the model of Sharjah, Ataya underlined the Emirate’s success story- noting its accolades as capital of Arab culture, capital of Islamic culture and this year as Book capital, in becoming a cultural beacon by creating the necessary infrastructure for nurturing emerging talents, showcasing regional and international Arab and Islamic art and introducing its visitors to enriching experiences in culture overall.

The three-day event was organized by the Economic Development Board of Mauritius and Zee Arts.

-ENDS-

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© Press Release 2019

Source: https://www.zawya.com/mena/en/press-releases/story/DirectorGeneral_of_Sharjah_Museums_participates_in_Mauritiusfirst_International_Art_Fair-ZAWYA20190813073724/

Posted on October 12, 2019

By Marwa Atif

The “Star and Key of the Indian Ocean”, Mauritius, will soon have its very own international art fair – Mauritius International Art Fair – from the 8th until the 11th of August.

The island nation, once home to the now extinct dodo, is renowned for its unique terrain, tropical climate, diversity of flora and fauna and a multiethnic, multicultural and multilingual ambience. Mauritius will host MIAF, the first of its kind in the nation, bringing together artists from neighbouring islands like Reunion, Madagascar and Seychelles, as well as from Europe, Middle East and Africa, Asia, Americas and Oceania.

Founded by Mauritian national and Dubai-based artist/art promoter Zaahirah Muthy, MIAF is being the catalyst for converting the country into a hub for global art.

The theme is both eclectic and innovative, Island Ambassadors Charly Lesquelin from Reunion, Clipse Teean from Madagascar and George Camille from Seychelles, will exhibit their works, giving the audience a glimpse of what art looks like at the Tropic of Capricon.

The agenda includes panel discussions on subjects that delve into the country’s cultural ecosystem and examine art’s role as a change agent. Among the panelists are two representatives from Louvre Abu Dhabi and Qasr Al Hosn.

Among other highlights that will light up the mountains and plateaus of Mauritius, the fair offers some workshops, live painting-performance and an interactive public art show that are held by Indian water colourist Bijay Biswaal, UAE based Egyptian artist Diaa Allam and Jerome Toq’r of France respectively, will Ryan Mario of Singapore will direct artists on building a portfolio. He will expose the devil in the details as he teaches artists how to negotiate the small print in things like contracts and pricing.

Muthy firmly believes that children must be exposed to art and if not, then art should be brought to them. Muthy’s campaign vehicle which has its footprint extending from the Emirates to Mauritius, ZeeArts, has corralled school children through a competition that will bring out the artist in them. Winners will have their works displayed at the Sofitel Mauritius L’Imperial Resort & Spa.

The native, flightless dodo may be extinct but global art has just taken wings in Mauritius.

The exhibition runs from the 8th until the 11th of August 2019.

 

Source : https://selectionsarts.com/art/the-dodo-and-the-phoenix/

Credit: Selections Arts

Posted on October 12, 2019

It was not too long ago when the Arts struggled to share the same stage as the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics industries. About 2 decades later, as the creative industry begins showing signs of holding its own in the world’s markets, it is only befitting to upkeep the professional profiles of its various facets.

The art industry satiates the global demand for visual stimuli. Yet, with a potentially skewed focus in its specifics, other components begin falling short of industry standards. Amidst the revelry of the Mauritius International Art Fair, ZeeArt’s cross-border partnership with Singapore takes on an initiative that aims to augment the professional competency in every artist. Designated as the Artist Empowerment Programme, the seminar to be conducted by art writer and journalist Ryan Mario on the second day of the art fair (8th August) will elucidate on the appropriate measures to be taken during the compilation of the artists’ portfolios, biographical profiles and the art of photographing the artworks, along with potential considerations when entering the art market while negotiating a contract, how to make effective use of online gallery and ultimately how to price their work. Questions raised by the artists present on the quality of their portfolios and write-ups shall also be addressed by the reviewing committee during the program.

With ZeeArt’s commitment to supporting the art community at large in check, the Artist Empowerment Programme shall be stacked upon the gallery’s foundation of building a powerful legacy of trust within the art world.

Posted on July 9, 2019

 

The landscape of art fairs has been sifting through uncertainty for a more than half a decade now since its demand peaked back in 2013 to 2014. The number of fairs globally has ballooned from fewer than 60 in 2000 to almost 300 today, one for almost every day of the year. Yet, “Fairtigue”, that iconized weariness that afflicts the art world is a smack on the hand of some collectors and investors who barely visit a single art fair from 2016 to 2018, let alone run a fair-hopping marathon from back when art fairs were at their zenith.

 

Even so, pulling the plug on art fairs for its dip in patronage is myopic, to say the least. Art fairs remain to be an important component alongside auctions which provide structure and geographical layout of the annual calendar for key identities of the art business. On top of nearly 300 fairs with international elements covering fine and decorative art, larger areas of the collectible art markets are subsumed under hundreds of other niches local and regional fairs. 2018 and early 2019 saw about 20 new events added to the art fair schedule, including 1-54 –

the Contemporary African art fair that launched its new edition in Marrakech, JINGART in Beijing, the Discovery Art Fair in Frankfurt, Taipei Dangdai, Art Chengdu in China, S.E.A. Focus in Singapore, and Frieze’s new fair in Los Angeles in 2019. The consolidated aggregate of art fair performances points to the fact that these art events are increasingly pivotal for galleries and artists. Art fair sales were estimated to reach $16.5 billion in 2018 with the total value of global dealer sales at 46%.

Aside from the financial and economic considerations of art fairs, the social benefits are also significant for these events to remain at the peak of relevance in the art world. While the glitz and glamour of art fairs exude the bourgeoisie lifestyle for major players in the art world, recent installments of these shows have realigned their socio-institutional features to make it more palatable for the general public or first-time art buyers. Art fairs are the network points for collectors, professionals, and dealers from distant regions to congregate for mutual observation and presentation of rising talents. They also set an industry standard for the activation of weak ties in the market. With an international line-up of personalities from every corner of the globe, these events are melting pots of culture and heritage that redefine creative boundaries for everyone.

 

As the demand for art is no longer reserved for high-end consumers, the fluctuation in the appearances of art fairs within the industry is closely monitored to determine the way of the market and buyer demographics. Building up satellite fairs around major art fairs may prove to be strategic in offering smaller galleries more platforms to compete amongst the giants while filling in vital niches in the market. Granted, the flood of fairs may be overwhelming, but they do provide different specializations and programming thrusts. After all, it is a matter of vacillating between different platforms, and it’s a good thing that there are now many opportunities to be tapped on. With greater diversity and choices art fairs offer, artistic projects and endeavors will appear even stronger in context.

Ryan Mario,

Art writer from Singapore

 

Posted on June 7, 2019

“Art speaks where words are unable to explain”. In recent years, Indian Ocean Paradise Island, Mauritius, has transformed into a unique Art Hub thanks to its dynamic promotion of Art in its various forms. With this in mind, the first edition of the Mauritius International Art Fair (MIAF) will be held from the 8th to 11th August 2019 at State-of-the-Art Cultural location …

continue reading on discovermauritius.app 

Posted on May 18, 2019

ZeeArts in collaboration with the Ministry of Education is launching a National School Campaign – The Mural Art and Installation Competition which is an initiative to raise awareness and explore children’s creativity with the vision of MIAF to position Mauritius as an Art and Cultural Hub. MIAF encourages students to let their imagination flow their creativity by producing a Mural Art or an Art installation.

Through the Ministry of Education,  we invite all school (primary and secondary) to participate and present a Mural Art/Installation under the theme – “Nu Leritaz nu Racin”.

The theme- “ Nu Leritaz Nu Racin”

We cannot deny how fast the world is evolving. Along with the new evolution of technology, are our children’s interest in computers, mobile phones, gadgets. However, games that are played on a virtual platform bring no such joy as games played in real life. It seems like our children have forgotten how to play.Luckily with MIAF, we are reaching out to children to develop their skills through games such as: “lamarel”, “canette”, “couc cassette”, etc …

All participating schools will receive a certificate of participation and MIAF will announce the three-top winners during the MIAF Gala Dinner.

Posted on May 16, 2019

 

Notre-Dame de Paris (in French)  means “Our Lady of Paris” is a medieval Catholic Cathedral. The art world is paying a visual tribute to the ravaged cathedral. The fire that razed the iconic  Notre Dame Cathedral Monday night in Paris destroyed much of the iconic church’s roof and caused its famed spire to topple in a blaze that horrified French citizens at the scene and the millions watching live around the world.

As flames consumed the roof of Notre Dame and threatened to destroy the great Gothic cathedral, curators, architects, artists and other figures in the art world took to social media to express their horror at the destruction and hope that it could be saved.

 

After nine hours of flames, the blaze was contained, leaving the two towers standing along with much of the interior nave. Even as the fire still burned, French President Emmanuel Macron pledge to rebuild the Cathedral, and almost immediately, benefactors stepped up to organized funds to the project.

 

In a statement posted on Twitter by reporter William Plummer, Francois-Henri Pinault said he and his father would commit €100 million ($113 million) to the project.

President Macron has called for a fundraising campaign to help rebuild the French icon after the blaze, which took some 400 firefighters to put out.

Posted on April 17, 2019

The Mauritius International Art Fair (MIAF) will be held from 8th to 11th August 2019 at Le Caudan Arts Centre, Mauritius, under the headline ‘Fostering Unity – Celebrating Differences’, positioning Mauritius as a contender for one of the world’s most artistically vibrant countries.

Founded by artist-activist Zaahirah Muthy, MIAF is a multi-disciplinary contemporary art fair designed to introduce original artwork from both local and international artists and galleries, with the objectives of positioning Mauritius as an internationally renowned art hub destination; to generate increased levels of tourism both during the festival and year-round; and to educate Mauritian society around the value of buying original artwork as an investment, and empowering them to do so .

The MIAF is an annual rendez-vous for artists from all over the world to gather, network, and engage in artistic dialogue and cultural exchange. MIAF unites artists from around the world – predominantly from neighboring islands (Rodrigues, Reunion, Madagascar, Seychelles) but also from Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Oceania – in the spirit of plugging Mauritian artists into the global art network. Visitors will have the opportunity to view and purchase an impressive range of art forms, including painting, sculpture, photography, installation, visual, and sound media and assemblage – each of indisputably high quality, yet priced fairly. The MIAF will feature a carefully curated selection of emerging artists, solo artists, island pavilions, project spaces and a section for showcasing the heritage of Mauritius, alongside stimulating arts activities designed to engage and enthrall both visitors and children, including workshops, panel discussions, and live performances.

The exhibition will take place at the newly opened Caudan Arts Centre – a landmark cultural venue in Mauritius. Situated in Port-Louis, the capital city of Mauritius, Caudan Arts Centre is based in the precinct of Le Caudan Waterfront: a vibrant and iconic location nestled in the harbour that seamlessly marries business with leisure and culture and will be transformed into a lively open-air studio for the duration of an exhibition. Boasting a theatre with exceptional acoustics, an exhibition area and other first-rate facilities, Caudan Arts Centre aspires to be a leading cultural destination in the region.

MIAF is open to all, from visitors interested in current art trends, to passionate collectors investing in promising contemporary art, and professional collectors buying for museums, trusts and societies. Visitors will also include cultural representatives from art societies and museums, as well as freelance curators and critics on the lookout for new trends and discoveries on the art market.

Opening with a VIP performance at Le Caudan Arts Centre, the event will open to the public on its second day with a morning panel discussion dedicated to corporates, policymakers, art connoisseur and island tours scheduled for international artists. Day three will involve a live painting by artists and workshop for children, and a food art installation and competition. The final day of the exhibition will include an Award Ceremony to acknowledge the artists, partners and sponsors, and close with a Mauritian Diaspora Gala dinner.

The creative industry is a burgeoning sector, with multiple avenues for generating income for the country, including arts, digital animation and visual effect (VFX), digital media, performing arts, design and fashion, and theme parks. The annual contribution for this promising industry is estimated between 2.5 to 3% of the country’s GDP.

The Economic Development Board (EDB) is supporting the event as part of a broader government-led effort to position Mauritius as an international platform to promote art. The Creative Industries has become a new engine for growth and economic development and the concept is linked to creativity and intellectual capital that are based mainly on local capabilities and culture. This international event will develop business linkages between local and international artists who are involved in the cycles of creation, production and distribution of creative work of arts.

In its strategy to elevate Mauritius to a high-income economy the government has constantly reinforced the creative industry by creating the right framework for the Film industry to support local artists. Similarly, the Government of Mauritius has the same agenda and spirit to provide the necessary creative space to unleash local creative talents and create business opportunities to the outside world.

Caudan Arts Centre and Economic Development Board are proud to be associated with the MIAF, seeing it as a strong partner in their mission of establishing a bright, creative future for Mauritius. The coalition of these three institutions is set to consolidate the nation as a beacon of cosmopolitanism.

The event’s founder and founder of ZeeArts, Zaahirah Muthy, is a passionate art activist from the Island. Zaahirah has dedicated her life encouraging a positive social change, and bringing forth a message of empowerment through her art and artistic initiatives. Last but not least, she has exhibited her work in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, the US and Asia. Zaahirah is the curator of World Art Dubai, and has curated over 28 art exhibitions in UAE, Singapore, Georgia and Lebanon, among the Art Connects Women, International Exhibition on its 3rd Edition.

ZeeArts is emerging from a community and now a leading art organization in the UAE. Its core mission is to connect and empower artists around the world through art exhibitions, events, retreats, and cultural exchanges. The organization has a strong commitment to social responsibility. Its philosophy includes the investment of leading artists to thriving economies, long-term productivity, and sustainable growth.

Posted on March 20, 2019
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