GUWAHATI, Jan 16 - The week-long art extravaganza � Olympia Fine Arts International Exhibition and Symposium (OFAIES) 2016 � got under way at the Srimanta Sankaradeva Kalakshetra this evening.
As many as 58 master artists from 36 countries are taking part in the first-of-its-kind event being held in the country. Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi formally inaugurated the event.
Gogoi, in his address, said that art works, paintings, etc., have the potential to strengthen friendship and can be used as a tool to remove misunderstanding and resolve conflicts and differences for a better world.
He said that the symposium being held in the city, which was the gateway to the North-east, would improve the cultural space of the region as a whole in the context of the contemporary world of arts.
�The event will also help the artists of 36 participating countries to understand and appreciate the unique cultural values of the north-eastern States and the country as a whole. It will create opportunities for the artists of the 36 countries for cross-cultural assimilation and thereby streng-thening the bond of international bonhomie,� he said.
Gogoi added that the event would also help in raising public interest in culture and promote the creation of new contemporary art works which would be conducive to world peace. Terming India as a great contributor to world peace, Gogoi also said that leaders like Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru contributed immensely to strengthen world peace.
Assam Cultural Affairs Minister Bishmita Gogoi also spoke on the occasion. Chief Secretary Vinod Kumar Pipersenia, vice president of Olympic Fine Arts Association Harald Schole, OFAA Board member, India, Dr Utpal Baruah, vice chairman of Srimanta Sankaradeva Kalakshetra Suryya Hazarika, Narayan Konwar, secretary of Sankaradeva Kalakshetra Society, among others, were present on the occasion.
The event will see the artists perform live at the Kalakshetra and Shilpgram campuses. There will also be interactions with local artists.
The event will conclude on January 22.