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ECO Visual Arts Festival to Celebrate Nowruz in Tajikistan

Saturday 7 January 2012

TEHRAN (Tehran Times) – Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) is to celebrate Nowruz in Tajikistan by organizing the first festival of visual arts in spring.

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Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) is an intergovernmental regional organization established in 1985 by Iran, Pakistan and Turkey for the purpose of promoting economic, technical and cultural cooperation among the Member States. It is the successor of the organization of Regional Cooperation for Development (RCD) which remained in existence from 1964 to 1979.
In 1992, the Organization was expanded to include seven new members, namely: Afghanistan, Republic of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Benefiting from shared cultural and historic affinities, member states hope to use the existing infrastructural and business links to embark on projects in priority sectors such as energy, trade, transportation, agriculture and drug control.

Artists from the ECO member countries are invited to submit their photo, graphic design and cartoon artworks to the secretariat of the festival in Tehran, the ECO Cultural Institute (ECI) reported on Friday. Pictorial images of artists depicting Nowruz traditions help promote cultural communication between countries. Works by artists from other countries with the central theme of Nowruz are also accepted for the festival, the report added.

Nowruz (Nozooz, Noruz), the ancient celebration of the Iranian New Year that begins on the first day of spring, was registered on UNESCO’s List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2009.

A group of veteran cartoonists and designers are collaborating in arranging the event. They include the policy-making council members Kambiz Derambakhsh, Ebrahim Haqiqi, Amrollah Farhadi, Seifollah Samadian, and Arash Baradaran. Cartoonist Derambakhsh, photographer Samadian, and graphic designer Farhadi are also appointed as the three secretaries of the festival.

Also included are the three boards of selection, which will be choosing the final entries. Maryam Zandi and Farzad Hashemi from Iran as well as Zaur Dakhte from Tajikistan will be selecting the photos. Sadik Karamustafa from Turkey, Ebrahim Haqiqi and Saed Meshki from Iran will be choosing the posters. Elman Mirzayev from the Republic of Azerbaijan, Hassan Karimizadeh and Jamal Rahmati will be selecting the cartoons.

The National Philharmonic Hall in Dushanbe will be hosting the festival and the entire or a selection from the works will be exhibited in the ECO member countries afterwards.

All the interested applicants are asked to register on the festival’s website www.ecieco.org before February 5.

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