The official opening ceremony of the exhibition “Azerbaijan: From Ancient Times To Modernity” organized by Heydar Aliyev Foundation with the support of the Permanent Delegation of the Republic of Azerbaijan to UNESCO was held at the UNESCO Headquarters on May 13 2015 within the framework of “European Night of Museums.” UNESCO is joining the “European Night of Museums” project for the 7th consecutive time and this time Azerbaijan was invited to this initiative as a “guest of honor.”
At the exhibition, which encompasses the rich history and culture of Azerbaijan, several ancient archeological objects and coins, as well as the traditional clothing, musical instruments and patterns of Azerbaijani copper and weaving art from the territory of Azerbaijan are showcased, together with the works of modern art professionals and this fabulous event will last until May 19.
In his opening speech, Mr. Genc Seiti, Director of the Division for External Relations and Public İnformation of UNESCO expressed his gratitude to Mrs Mehriban Aliyeva, the First Lady of Azerbaijan, UNESCO’s Goodwill Ambassador, for her great contribution to organization of this exhibition. The ancient archaeological objects displayed in the exhibition such as copper art, the samples of weaving art and modern art patterns were evaluated by Mr G.Seiti as an indicator of sustainability of the cultural heritage of Azerbaijan's contemporary art. It was mentioned that the exhibition proves once again that Azerbaijan continues to maintain its cultural heritage. The active involvement of Azerbaijan in UNESCO Conventions in the field of culture, particularly in the protection of intangible cultural heritage was also mentioned by G.Seti.
The Permanent Delegate of the Republic of Azerbaijan to UNESCO, Mr. Anar Karimov informed the guests about the rich history of our country based on, among other things, art objects demonstrated at the exhibition, and invited them to Azerbaijan in order to learn even more about this country and its culture. The Ambassador mentioned that despite the fact that Azerbaijan suffers from the armed conflict and military occupation, it is doing its best for the restoration of peace and prosperity in the region and in this regard informed the participants of exhibition about the 3rd World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue and the first European Games to be held in Azerbaijan. The Ambassador mentioned the enormous support of the First Lady of Azerbaijan, president of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva in the organization of such events and informed the guests about her active role in the capacity of UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador.
The Permanent Delegates accredited to UNESCO, members of Secretariat and the representatives of the French community attended the exhibition with a high interest and several books and brochures about the rich history, literature and culture of our country were distributed to them.
After the opening ceremony of the exhibition the fabulous concert program called “New generation of Azerbaijani Jazz” was held. The young jazz stars of Azerbaijan Shahin Novresli and his band performed during the concert.
In his opening speech, Mr. Genc Seiti, director of foreign relations department of UNESCO said that jazz represents one of the elements of diversity, peace and mutual understanding. In order to promote intercultural dialogue and the fight against discrimination, UNESCO announced the April 30 as the international Jazz day and this year it is already the 4th time that a solemn jazz day was is held at UNESCO, said G. Seiti. The Azerbaijani Jazz which has almost one century of history, said G.Seti, is an indicator of the power of Azerbaijani culture.
İn his speech The Permanent Delegate of the Republic of Azerbaijan to UNESCO, Mr. Anar Karimov spoke about the role of jazz in the promotion of peace and mutual understanding in the world full of conflicts, separatism and extremism challenges. He also mentioned about the role of jazz in the rapprochement of people from different race, ethnic and religious background and its high contribution to dialogue in this regard. Mr Karimov informed the participants about the history of jazz in Azerbaijan, especially about the synthesis of jazz and mugham widely developed in our country. He also emphasized that jazz became a part of national traditional culture in Azerbaijan. The role of the First Lady of Azerbaijan, president of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mrs. Mehriban Aliyeva in the realization of several initiatives for the establishment of jazz traditions and cultural diversity in Azerbaijan was also mentioned in the speech.
The participants of the concert listened to the several national jazz performances of the artists invited from Azerbaijan and highly welcomed the concert.