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Embassy Showcases Rich Afghan Cultural Legacy
Embassy of Afghanistan


Washington, D.C. -- Ambassador Said Tayeb Jawad and Mrs. Shamim Jawad hosted a gala reception at the Embassy of Afghanistan on May 13, 2004, entitled “A Celebration of the Arts in Afghanistan.” Numerous Afghan poets, artists, painters, and musicians attended the reception and participated in displaying their works, reading poems, and performing classical music. Some 500 guests attended the reception including members of the U.S. President’s Cabinet, Department of State officials, Members of Congress, Ambassadors, investors, prominent journalists and private sector representatives.

A collection of pictures of prehistoric sculptures including one from stone 17000 years ago--the oldest sculpture found in Asia--was exhibited. Other collections included artifacts from the Greco-Bactrian and Greco-Buddhist styles of art that flourished in Afghanistan from 200 BC-400 AD and the Islamic arts that flourished in the cities of Balkh, Ghazni, Heart, Kandahar, and Kabul from 9th to 15th century, colorful jewelries, traditional costumes. Modern works by Professor Haidarzad, Breshna and a 12-year old Afghan painter, living in Kabul, were also displayed. While familiar sights to many Afghans, western embassy visitors marveled at the diversity and quality of the artwork, jewelry and colorful Afghan traditional attire, as seen on both women and men.

Afghan cuisine was served to give the guests a flavor of Afghanistan’s delicious foods. The guests enjoyed the evening and many networked to learn about each other’s programs and projects relating to the reconstruction of Afghanistan.

In his remarks, Ambassador Jawad talked about the history of arts in Afghanistan and noted, “Now that we have begun rebuilding Afghanistan, nothing can serve better than art to deliver the message of unity, love, and peace.” Recalling the mindless destruction of the Buddah sculptures in Bamiyan in March 2001, Ambassador Jawad called upon Afghan artists to participate actively in reviving Afghanistan’s rich cultural heritage.

M. Ashraf Haidari
(202) 483-6410, (Ex-811)
[email protected]

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