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03 Jan 2012 2012 Manama as the Bahraini Capital of Arab Culture, H.E Minister of Culture; Bahrain has embraced knowledge and qualified to set up an Arab cultural infrastructure

After successive decades of cultural achievements, the Kingdom of Bahrain has manifestly proved to the world that it deserves to host the capital of Arab Culture in 2012. Awwal land legacy, the rich historical heritage laden with cultural and intellectual diversity, the attention given to the preservation of archaeology, heritage and arts throughout Bahrain's history are all elements contributing to the bright future of Manama as the cultural lighthouse of the whole world. H.E Shaikha Mai bint Mohammed Al- Khalifa, Minister of Culture, announced the start of events celebrating "Manama as the Capital of Arab Culture in 2012" saying that " The cultural event this year is exceptional and is not only limited to a ministry's initiative, but rather an inevitable result of interactive communication between different components of society, thus choosing Manama is another proof that Bahrain has embraced knowledge and  how it is qualified to set up an Arab cultural infrastructure".

 During every month of the year celebrating Manama as the capital of culture there will be a different cultural rainbow theme in order to highlight the maximum number of subjects dealt with in this diversity of colorful culture scene.  Cultural activities and world-renowned personalities will come to Manama to participate and witness the birth of culture of hope and innovation along twelve months, by shedding the lights on twelve intellectual themes. These themes will start with the theme of formation, architecture, design, heritage, museums, poetry, translations, environment, music and theatre. The Ministry shall invite every month a group of intellectuals and experts from allover the world. A broad range of activities incorporating different aspects of Arab culture will take place month by month throughout the year, in addition to the forums, conferences, workshops, different cultural competitions every month with a different theme. Moreover, many international books, novels and publications will be translated into Arabic for the first time, with an average of one book every month on a designed theme, ending the year with a dozen of translated international publications.

In addition, to the proposed programme of Manama, as the Capital of Arab Culture, Bahrain, keen as ever to attract its visitors to enjoy culture and tourism wonderful richness, will inaugurate many development and urban projects aimed at anchoring the notion of Arab cultural infrastructure; twelve projects such as the Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage, the National Theatre, Al-Khamis Mosque Visitors' Centre, Bani-Jamra Weaving Factory, Tree of Life Visitors' Centre. Other restoration projects include development of Bab-al-Bahrain, the renovation of the Bahrain Hotel, Museum of Al-Sout (traditional style performer). A number museum exhibition will be held in Al-Hidaya al-Khalifia School and Riffa Fort, the purpose of which is reviving the historical relics and highlighting its crucial role in ancient times.

Events celebrating Manama as the Capital of Arab Culture will start with a lecture by   James Cosh, from Baylor Art Foundation, on 9 January. The lecture will narrate the institutional experience and the role of art promotion in disseminating culture. Many other important exhibitions will follow, such as 38th Fine Arts Exhibition, which will be held under the patronage of His Royal Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa, Prime Minister, Paris-based Arab World Institute (IMA) Exhibition visiting Bahrain (On the Brink of Reality and the Colour of a Dream), of the 5th Bahrain International Sculpture Symposium on Tuesday 10th January. Many other accompanied exhibitions will also be held to showcase artistic works of other art associations and foundations using diversified visual techniques, such as paintings, wallboards, sculpture and calligraphy. The Jordanian art exhibition will showcase works by the Royal Society of Fine Arts, with the exceptional participation of Princess Wijdan Ali lecturing on her artistic and diplomatic experience.

It is worth mentioning that the Ministry of Culture, given the crucial importance of interactive cultural communication and need to inform its public about the experience and the event everywhere, will publish a monthly periodical bulletin containing information on most important cultural events in the Kingdom of Bahrain, inside the Ministry or in most prominent thought and art foundations locations.  You can follow-up the latest cultural events and programs written in soft copies or via the website by simply clicking on http://www.moc.gov.bh or via social media networks, such as  Facebook or Twitter.