Visitors enjoy the ‘Food Fiesta’ at the Philippines Pavilion in Expo 2020 Dubai.
Staff Reporter, Gulf Today
Cameroon shared its vision of being a sustainable country and a land of vast opportunities during its National Day celebrations at Expo 2020 Dubai.
Najeeb Mohammed Al Ali, Executive Director, Commissioner General’s Office, Expo 2020 Dubai, welcomed Iya Tidjani, Ambassador of Cameroon to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Al Ali said, “Cameroon’s participation brings to light the nation’s efforts in mitigating climate change within the agribusiness sector and promotes the ample investment opportunities available in various fields, such as manufacturing and tourism.
“We value the evolving relations we share with Cameroon and aim to further expand on our partnership across various fields of joint interest, such as foreign direct investment attraction, infrastructure and agricultural technologies, for the benefit and well-being of our people.”
Iya Tidjani said, “Cameroon’s participation in this important event that is Expo 2020 Dubai cannot be overemphasised. The general theme of Expo 2020 Dubai, namely ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’, and the one Cameroon has chosen, which is ‘Africa in miniature’, are perfectly in line with the objectives of the Sustainable Development Goals that we hope to achieve by 2030.”
The National Day Ceremony at Al Wasl Plaza saw the raising of the UAE and Cameroon flags, after which both countries’ national anthems were played. The speeches were followed by a breathtaking cultural performance by the Cameroon National Ballet on the Stage of Nations.
The show integrated dance, traditional music and colourful costumes, and incorporated a clear message on the importance of strategies to limit the production of greenhouse gases that lead to global warming and intensify natural disasters.
The Cameroon Pavilion, located in the Opportunity District, invites visitors to discover a land of stunning scenery and 200-plus languages as they experience “Africa in miniature” via the nation’s geographical, cultural and human diversity, as well as its efforts to create a more sustainable future. High-profile past visitors to the pavilion have included legendary Cameroon international football player Roger Milla.
The Angola pavilion Art Gallery at the Expo 2020 started Tondongo Collective Exhibition, the Feminine Universe in celebration of International Women’s Day. The exhibition, opened with a ceremony featuring a traditional Angolan dance performance and along with the artists who engaged with the visitors on their artworks, will run until March 20, 2022.
Featuring 32 artworks in different artistic styles ranging from paintings, sculptures, modelling, application in fabric, photography, and performances by nine different artists, the ‘Tondongo, the Feminine Universe’ exhibition focuses on ritualistic, feminine, and African scarification that symbolize gestation of the living being. The exhibition also marks the union of different languages that harmonize in the common feeling of strength and creativity.
Commenting on the exhibition, Ms. Carla Peairo, the curator of the Gallery at the Angola Pavilion, commented, “We are proud to host this exhibition. The pavilion brings together artists from various backgrounds. In the process, it shows the diversity and richness of contemporary art celebrated by women. The goal of the exhibition is to create new cultural ties, thus strengthening the exchange of experiences in the artistic sphere.”
The Angola pavilion has showcased several exhibitions from traditional and contemporary artists from the nation since the start of Expo 2020. Many of these exhibitions were from Angolan female artists from various backgrounds and art styles.
So far, the female artists that have participated at the pavilion in Solo exhibitions at the Gallery include Armanda Alves, Carla Peairo, Daniela Ribeiro, Fineza Teta, and Maria Belmira. They have presented works from the series The Dynamic of Being, Ancestrality and Technology Symbiosis and Weaving Memories, respectively.
Now, joining the international exhibition is Anastasie Akibodé, a Frenchwoman with African roots that go back to Cape Verde, Benin, and Senegal, presents Wired Artistic Energies; Miriam Rodriguez, born in Portugal, with origins in Cape Verde and Angola, shows the Rebirth collection and the artist Márcia Dias, Angolan and cultural ambassador for the Oscar Ribas Foundation, presents the Resilience set.
At the Angola Pavilion, visitors are shown how Angola’s history and its technological innovations are intimately linked. The Pavilion focuses on the Angolan Chowke people and their relationship with the people of Angola today by using symbols like a large parrot called Toje, which symbolises freedom of thought. That is one of the symbols that the Pavilion is using to reintroduce the dying art of storytelling.
The education cluster at the Angola Pavilion is presenting modern opportunities for the people of Angola. They are displaying Angola’s program to educate students who are interested in the aerospace industry as a part of their program to promote space research. It includes the opportunity to attend a technology space institute for free.
Culture is a key part of the Angola Pavilion at this edition of the Expo. They are having nightly performances throughout the Expo where musicians from all over Angola will play modern and ancient music. They are also hosting regular performances on traditional and contemporary dance forms and visitors can attend workshops to learn about ancient instruments and how they were handmade.
In 1851 the Crystal Palace was the centrepiece of London’s Great Exhibition – the first World Expo. It celebrated the man-made industrial wonders of a rapidly changing world. Architecture, contents and a theme, ‘Industry of All Nations’, were combined to create a big idea of nations meeting nations in shared technological and commercial progress. In more recent years, participants in World Expos, including governments, international organisations and companies, have gathered to find solutions to universal challenges and to promote their achievements, products, ideas, innovations, their national brand, and their nations as destinations for tourism, trade and investment.