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Art and Propaganda, Art as Cultural Diplomacy events

Qatar dresses Greek statues: reason for disagreement?

QatarBy Ana Lordkipanidze, Institute for Cultural Diplomacy

Olympic Games originated in Ancient Greece and date back to 776 B.C. As mentioned in some sources, during the time of Olympic games all the conflicts had to cease and be postponed until after the games. Many centuries later Olympic Games still take place once every four years but not necessarily in Greece, rather in different countries of the world. In August 2011, Qatar announced that it was competing to host Olympic games in 2020. Even though it didn’t win in this nomination, the country still wanted to have connection with Olympic games and recently opened an exhibition in its capital- Doha dedicated to Ancient Olympic Games. For this purpose Greece sent Doha Greek statues for the exhibition. This gift was supposed to become the “friendship bridge” between Greece and Qatar, but everything took different direction when Greece’s culture minister, Costas Tzavara discovered that his precious naked Statues were all covered by Dohans. As the administration of Doha Museum explains, it would have been not appropriate for Doha’s Muslim society and mostly for women to be exposed to naked statues. Greece revealed that it understands the standpoint of Dohans, nevertheless it cannot allow partial exposition of precious Greek statues.  In fact, Doha t had to pack the statues and send them back to Greece. The precedent ended with a dialogue, but who knows, maybe it can become the reason for the conflict in the future?

Center for Cultural Diplomacy Studies Publication
Institute for Cultural Diplomacy
www.ccds-berlin.de
www.culturaldiplomacy.org

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We are the Blogsphere Team of the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy. We are the interactive part of the web resources of ICD. We spread culture and mutual understanding among cultures through blogs.

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The London Art as Cultural Diplomacy ConferenceAugust 21st, 2013

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