This past weekend, Elyor Nematov and I went to Osh to deliver NewEurasia’s three-day workshop on photojournalism. In fact, calling it a workshop on “photojournalism” is a bit deceptive, since it was much more than just an extended seminar on the technicalities of using photographic and videographic equipment. Elyor explained the principles of creating a photo-story, and he also elaborated the philosophical implications of what it really meant to be a photo-journalist.
This was the third and final workshop of our current arts and culture project, which has been supported by Hivos Foundation. Unfortunately, I’ve been hearing from various sources that our adventure in Osh may very well have been one of the foundation’s last direct endeavors in Central Asia. After 19 years of hard work in the region, it’s perhaps a fitting end for them, too. A cornerstone of Hivos’ mission has been to break down barriers, foster discussion, and in general promote pluralism, and it was precisely these kinds of things which Elyor elaborated upon, both from a philosophical perspective and a technical one. As he put it, the photo-journalist’s duty is not just to record events, but to break down the subject-object divide. In this respect, the photo-story, with its essay-like to meditate upon and explore all the different facets of an issue, is the photo-journalists’ most unique creation and tool.
Moreover, Osh proved to be a perfect site for our workshop. This was my first time visiting that city, and in just a few days, I was nearly overwhelmed with its ethnic and ideological complexity. Osh is more than just an ancient, tiny city in the middle of the Eurasian landmass. With a metropolitan area of almost half a million souls, and with a history that stretches back into the shadows of Central Asia’s early history, the city has long been touted as a melting pot of cultures, almost an archetype of Silk Road and Soviet internationalism. Consequently, Osh emerges as a dual-sided symbol, of what the Kyrgyz call “маданият” — civilization — and what Kyrgyzstan could be. The two sides of this symbol need not be mutually co-exclusive, much less violently so, although controversies continue to swirl around them as a consequence of the June 2010 events.
International exhibition “Morning freshness in the country of high mountains” was held at the Exhibition Hall of the Kyrgyz Republic’s Union of Artists “The Oak Park” named after S.A. Chuikov. It was running for two weeks between 18-30th November 2013 on the occasion of the official visit of President of the Kyrgyz Republic, Almazbek Atambayev, to the Republic of Korea.
Photo exhibition on violence against women “Don’t be afraid, don’t be silent” was held between 22-24th November 2013 at one of the shopping malls of Bishkek.
The best rock festival in Central Asia - IlkhomRockFest, sounded like a thunder on 15 November in Tashkent!
In that day rock band “Origami wings” created special performance called ”Supersonic youth”.
On October, 25 the colorful exhibition and sale of carpets made by Leylek craftswomen was opened at the State Historical Museum of the Kyrgyz Republic.
Bactria Cultural Center, in collaboration with the Embassy of Japan in the Republic of Tajikistan, has organized an ikebana presentation and kimono fashion show on Sunday 20th, October. This event celebrating Japanese culture was held at Ismaili Center, Dushanbe.
The 7th season of popular rock festival “IlkhomRockFest” was opened on 5 October in Tashkent .
The bright rock-n-roll show, which was staged by BeKind band, has turned the stage of the theater “Ilkhom” to a real madhouse.
Fair – Exhibition og Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China (XUAR) opened on September 27 in the Dushanbe. Title of the exhibition is impressive but what was exhibited and sold was not the most recent and high-quality achievements of science, culture and industry of China. More information is here, and I post photo reportage.
Street Festival was successfully held on one of the central streets of Bishkek. On September 22 the second KG Street Fest Pedestrian Paradise pleased residents and guests of the capital with a bright show program, a big trade fair of various products, and the training programs for children. The main purpose of the event is to popularize the rights of pedestrians and to promote a safe traffic on the roads of Kyrgyzstan. This year the Festival was held under the slogan “Move in the rhythm of a green city!”
“Second international charity food Festival” took place in Dushanbe on September 21, 2013. The organizer of the Festival are the Ministry of the foregn affairs of Tajikistan and Embassadors club. Different diplomatic missions and international organizations based in Tajikistan presented their cuisine.