The recently concluded Qatar International Art Festival (QIAF) proved a mega international event. As many as 147 artists coming from 58 countries attended the festival that was held at Fire Station. The festival, organised by MAPS International WLL Doha, had six major events in six days.
The festival started with the Qatar local cultural tour. All local and international participants were taken to different places in Qatar and they enjoyed the full day trip covering Museum of Islamic Art, Dhow Site, Katara – the Cultural Village, Pearl-Qatar, and Souq Waqif. The visiting artists were amazed by the fast growth and development of the country. They appreciated Qatar’s support and love for art and cultural activities.
On the second day, the live painting symposium started in the plaza area of Festival Venue Doha Fire Station with enthusiasm. Each participant, having his or her name identity badge, created some unseen dream on the canvas. The artists had many ideas to put on the canvas after they visited different sites in Qatar. They painted some beautiful images of Qatar and earned appreciation from the visitors.
It was followed by the inauguration of the exhibition. QIAF Art Exhibition was inaugurated by Hamad Mohammed al-Marri, Director to Minister of Culture and Sports, in Annex Hall, Fire Station. The inaugural ceremony was also attended by Louise Cutajar, Qatar Museum Director; Ajay Sharma, British Ambassador; Ritu Kumaran, wife of Indian ambassador; and several other distinguished guests and dignitaries.
On the third day, HE Salah bin Ghanem bin Nasser al-Ali, Minister for Culture and Sports, visited the festival and appreciated the creative works of the artists. He was full of praise and thanked all the participating artists for taking part in the festival. He extended a special thanks to all the international artists who had come to Qatar.
The fourth day was very exciting to start with. Again, a live painting show was held. The artists once again exhibited their colourful creative abilities on the canvas. In the evening HE Salah bin Ghanem bin Nasser al-Ali hosted a dinner for all participating artists at Yasmin Palace Restaurant, Pearl-Qatar. Hamad Mohammed al-Marri organised a special visit to Al Shaqab Academy for all the international participants who got a chance to see Arabian horses.
The day five started with amazing master classes by six very professional artists. The classes were open for public. The six classes were conducted by artists namely, Juan Carlos, Shehla Khan, Mesha Sendyk, Berislava Grace, Nemeshto and Vijendra Sharma. The masterclasses were followed by a talk show conducted by seven art experts. Mohammed Ali Abel, Khalifa al-Obidly, Ioannis Maronitis, Jameela, Igor, Abdulrahman al-Dorani, Patrizia Gallo and Rashmi Agarwal took part in the panel discussion.
On the sixth day, award ceremony was organised. The artists were awarded for their participation and the creative skills they had shown. Conspicuous among those who attended the award ceremony were Abdulrahman al-Dorani, M S Bukhairi, Azim Abbas, Harish Kanjani, Amal al-Aathem and Indian ambassador P Kumaran. All the participants got the participation certificate from the organiser company-MAPS International WLL and from UNESCO Club of Piraeus and Islands. The artists who conducted the masterclasses were also given the certificates. The award ceremony concluded with a dinner.
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