TWO GOLD MEDALS FOR LEBANON IN THE ARTS OF OLYMPIAD LONDON 2012

The two Lebanese artists Lena Kelekian and Hagop Sulahian returned to Lebanon after securing two gold medals in the arts through their artworks that were representing Lebanon.

Within the context of the cultural activities held during the London 2012 Olympics an international competition was held under the heading of “Creative Cities Collection” Fine Arts Exhibition London 2012 with the theme of “The Great China Wall and the river Thames embrace the world” in a direct reference to the transition of the Olympic games from Beijing to London.

From over fifteen thousand artwork entries only five hundred were selected and exhibited in the Barbican Center from 1 to 7 August 2012. The opening of the art exhibition was preceded by a Gala event were words from the head of IOC Mr. Jacque Rogue and mayor of London Mr. Boris Johnson were recited and a word from Lord Howell on behalf of the British Foreign Office and the chairman of the International Olympic Committee Education and Culture Committee Mr. Rambis, the Chinese ambassador to the UK Liu Xiaoming and many other officials in charge of setting up this major international cultural event that was seen as a continuation of the Olympic Fine Arts Exhibition event that was initiated in Beijing in 2008. The speeches were followed by a monumental musical concert with the participation of a selection of international artists such as the Chinese piano virtuoso Lang Lang and many opera singers, dancers and performers.

Kelekian is the 1st Lebanese artists from the Arab world to have  her artworks selected for the Olympic Fine Arts exhibitions in two consecutive Olympiads and received her second gold medal at the London 2012 fine arts after receiving it for the 1st time in Beijing Olympic Fine Arts in 2008.

It was quite noteworthy the interest of the British media in the two Lebanese artists where the most recurring questions during the interviews was related to the artistic movement in Lebanon in particular and the Arab world in general.

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