For more than a quarter of a century, Belarus and the United Kingdom (UK) have successfully cooperated in the trade, economic, cultural, scientific, and humanitarian spheres. The promotion of Belarusian brands abroad is a strategic task for state bodies, enterprises, and non-profit organizations. Besides, the point is not in the products by Belarusian companies only. The “BelBrand” Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property is engaged in defending interests of national producers-owners of intellectual property on modern integration platforms, and in promoting Belarusian brands; it is involved in supporting and advancing youth initiatives, upbringing the responsible attitude towards intellectual property in young people, and rejection of unfair competition, counterfeiting and piracy; and the Association promotes young people’s ideas and projects in the spheres of sciences, technologies, culture and education.
Within its latest project, “Arts in Defence of Brands”, BelBrand is supporting talented young people by helping them in organising exhibitions, artistic plein airs, literary and theatrical festivals, publishing literary works, and in training them in technologies for promoting and commercialising projects and initiatives. The Association is rightly proud of such international projects as the Eurasian International Cultures’ Festival; the International Musical BELBRAND AWARD; “Arts in English” and others. On January 15, 2018, BelBrand officially became a member of the Eurasian Creative Guild. The bilateral fruitful cooperation has allowed us to realise several landmark projects in the spheres of culture, arts, literature and education both in Belarus and the UK. The Eurasian literary collection “Nits” (Thread) was published and presented the authors from the countries of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU); the Association’s activities were presented at Cambridge University; besides, literary saloons, creative meetings, arts exhibitions and plein airs of young painters were held. In September 2018, thanks to the educational project “Arts in English”, five Belarusian artists took part in a plein air event, held in the town of Hemel Hempstead and in London. The works created during the event, made a part of the exhibition of Belarusian arts in London held in October 2018. The Association’s successful projects are always a fruit of cooperation with its partner organisations. An important partner is the “Art Chaos” Art Gallery. The “Art Chaos” Artistic Gallery is a young Belarusian gallery, whose activities are aimed at the development and popularisation of Belarusian arts, as well as at supporting young painters. It was opened for visitors in 2017. Since inceptoin, “Art Chaos” has been a participant in a number of cultural events in the Republic of Belarus, held a number of personal exhibitions of young and famous contemporary Belarusian artists, and conducted charity projects. The gallery possesses its own collection of works of arts, as well as a collection of exhibition works, which are shown as part of a permanent sale exhibition in Minsk. BelBrand and Art Chaos have held and plan to organise, with the assistance of the Embassy of the Republic of Belarus in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Eurasian Creative Guild in London, a number of exhibitions: “Belarusian Arts – Life and Dreams” (October 2018), “Step BY Step” (January 2019), and a Week of Belarusian Arts (April 2019). A presentation of Belarusian arts is an infrequent phenomenon for London – the recognized centre of gallery activities. After knowing the works by Kazimir Malevich, Marc Chagall and Léon Bakst, the experienced London audience is still unaware of the contemporary Belarusian culture. Meanwhile, by relying on the national history, traditions of the Soviet period and by perceiving the new world trends, Belarusian painters and sculptors are depicting, in their own way, their country, their lives and dreams, by making use of the well-recognisable special author’s synthesis of surrealism and realism. A special feature of the recent exhibitions was the presentation of works by famous masters and by a new generation of painters and sculptors. The young authors: Maria Kosheleva, Anastasia Shilyagina, Alesya Issa, Maria Larionova, Pavel Grebennikov, Roman Sakovich, Varvara Vyborova, Olga Grouss, Alexander Yushkevich, are all laureates of the BelBrand Artistic Award, which gives them an opportunity, with the Association’s support, to take part in international plein airs, master classes and promote their works at various exhibitions.
The works of the recognized masters, Egor Batalyonok, Nikolai Buschik, Alexander Demidov, Vasily Kostyuchenko, Ivan Semiletov, Anna Silivonchik, Alexander Shibnev and Natalia Ivanova, were presented by the “Art Chaos” Gallery, a major promoter of Belarusian arts.
Anna Bizhik, and arts historian and the curator of exhibitions said, “It’s important for a creator to exhibit his/her works and acquaint people with them. Exhibitions in London, one of the world’s cultural centres, can rightly be treated for many talented Belarusian artists as the dream that has come true.”
In April, London welcomed, under the general theme “Belarusian Arts in London”, an exhibition of Belarusian artists’ paintings “Step BY Step”; a photo exposition “75”, dedicated to the 75th anniversary of Belarus’ liberation from Nazi invaders; a show and a presentation of the collection of the Belarusian costume designer Anastasia Falkovich; and an exhibition of Alla Gubarevich’s works “Artistic Thread”.
The photo exposition “75” presented photos by the Belarusian photographer Anastasia Andreichikova and project “Belarus Remembers” by the Belarusian Republic’s Youth Union.
These are not the only events planned by the BelBrand and its partners for holding in the UK in 2019. The deep conviction that culture is the most universal means for revealing new promising ways of interaction among peoples of different countries motivates the organisers to further actions.
Text by Nina Kalita photos by BELBRAND