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Alliance Française: Promoting Arts and Culture (1)

France’s foreign policy is also geared towards Encouraging cultural exchanges and promoting the French language
France has 144 French cultural establishments working abroad in 90 countries and a network of 283 Alliances Françaises.
The French-language promotion policy covers 110 million people learning French from 850,000 teachers in 130 countries. The Agency for French Studies Abroad (AEFE) co-ordinates the activities of the 252 French schools worldwide. Mr. Emmanuel Emyard as director of Alliance francaise, Port Harcourt has greatly promoted works of arts and culture in Port Harcourt and beyond.
Here are voices of leaders in the field of art and culture promotion with respect to the 2011 exhibition with the theme Footprint add’s Nigeria @ 51 at Novotel Conference Hall on Friday 21st October, 2011.
“History has it in the field of development that there are standard principles that must be met in order to have a notable achievement. Those who understand it set the foundation for others to build upon.
In Nigeria, cultural promotion, political, social and other landmark achievement have played an important role in the building of sell-confidence and realizing developmental ambitions of a nation plagued with social and environmental challenges.
It is against this background that the exhibition is showcasing the works of indigenous artists and otherwise residents of the Niger-Delta, hence the respective title and theme “Nigeria @ 51 FOOTPRINTS”.
Today Nigeria can boast of new generation artists set to showcase to Nigeria and the globe talents and the creativity which abound in these ethnic nationalities.
This exhibition is aimed at drawing attention to the various ways by which Nigerian artists particularly those in Rivers/Bayelsa have seen and interpreted their individual environment enabling people to see the life style of Nigeria through the eyes of these creative minds”
Director, Curatoral services
National Gallery of Arts

“The National gallery of Art was established primarily to focus our national artistic creativity for the purposes of highlighting its potentials and to initiate programs and activities that help sustain the tempo of Artistic discourse in the country. Through these programs, modem Nigerian visual Art has thrived nationally and globally in promotion and appreciation patronage.
Visual art is not only for aesthetic purposes but it is also a means of communication. In line with the fact, the national Gallery of art port Harcourt station has packaged this exhibition of creative work of art for the celebration of Nigeria’s 51 independence anniversary; In addition, the Gallery has endeavored to spotlight the achievements of Nigerian visual artists in the promotion of Nigerian art by way of publication of rich research materials.
The artists who are being showcased represent a generation whose creative ingenuity is a source of inspiration for the younger artists spread around the country.
The artists both indigenous and otherwise residing in the city of Port Harcourt have grown considerably. The region can boast of innumerable professional painters, sculptors, textile designers etc. and many have gained national and international recognition in their chosen areas.
The exhibition is aimed at showcasing the works of some of artists. It is also depict the present scene in modem Nigeria s visual art and provides an insight into the future of the arts and artists.
I thank the curators, the National Gallery of Art, patrons and supporters of this exhibition in appreciation of our great nation.”
Hon. EDEM Duke Minister of Tourism, Culture and national orientation.
“The place of Arts and the artists in the development of the society cannot be under estimated even if the value is not being appreciated.
In line with this, the national Gallery of Arts (NGA) saddled with responsibility of promoting the nations artistic creativity brings an exposition of modern Visual artist into national focus and set against a background of national and international standards. The exhibition covers Drawings, Paintings, Sculptures, Textile and Wood burning.
Nigerian Arts is dynamic and not only serves the purpose of aesthetics and functionality but also as a source of social empowerment. The exhibition constitutes an aesthetic of skills, design approaches and trends by way of highlighting the. variety of activities and approaches by artists and the need to come together to make a statement on issues bothering our nation. Titled Nigeria @ 50 and themed: “FOOTPRINT” the idea behind is to showcase the developmental steps of the country
It is the first in the series of exhibitions organized by the National Gallery of Arts, Port Harcourt Station in association with Alliance flançaise Port Harcourt supported by AIT Airfrance and NOVOTEL Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
We hope that this exhibition and its impact will drive home the message of self reliance and self sufficiency. Focal point of government policy by way of inspiring us nationally to develop our traditional design resources in our march to a general future.
There is a bright future for Nigerian arts and artists and we are happy to exhibit these works, many of which have not been seen by the public.
This is a forward-step in the assessment of modern Nigerian art.
Thank you for viewing.”
Dr. Abdulahi Muka I.
The Director General
National Gallery of Arts

“It is a great honour for me to feature in this catalogue which is dedicated to the exhibition theme “Footprints” in so much that this catalogue portrays the proof of the bilateral relationship that exist between Alliance Francaise Port Harcourt and the National Gallery of Art. It is therefore incontestable that this exhibition which brings together Nigerian Artists amongst whom are painters and sculptors natural has it’s place amongst the cultural activities of Alliance Francaise.
As is portrayed in this exhibition, art and culture are everlasting. The relationship between France and Nigeria is age long and the interest of Nigerians in French Language and culture is real. Also the proximity of Francophone countries to Nigeria has all the more helped to develop the dialogue of cultures between Anglophone African countries.
Evidently, through this exhibition, another bond is created between our two countries and our collaboration with the Port Harcourt National Gallery of Art and it’s curator Mrs. Pat Nkwocha. Another point, is that exhibition is taking place for the first time at Novotel, with the partnership of Novotel Port Harcourt and it’s director Yves Courault to whom we owe immense gratitude for this collaboration. I wish this exhibition will be a great success.”
Emmanuel Eymard
Director, Alliance Française Port Harcourt.

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