[Daily Times 16 November 2019] The Serena Hotels is sponsoring the first-ever Islamabad Art Festival 2019, which will be held from November 18-30, 2019.

The festival has been organised by a consortium of public and private educational institutions, art galleries, and artist associations from across Pakistan, including support from foreign embassies. The Serena Hotels has been actively playing a role in flourishing the arts and culture of Pakistan. This event has been sponsored under the cultural diplomacy of the hotel which promotes art and artisans and brings them to limelight.

Led by President and Chief Curator Jamal Shah, the festival is a collaborative project and will be hosted in several locations in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, including museums, art galleries, educational institutes, and public parks. The festival will be inaugurated on November 18 at 11:00 am at the Pakistan National Council of Arts (PNCA), and will continue for 13 days until an elaborate closing ceremony on November 30. The thematic focus of the festival is ‘Dialogue between Tradition and Modernity’.

The festival is expected to engage an audience of at least 500,000 individuals from diverse backgrounds and ages. The participants of the festival will include over 200 individuals from 34 countries and approximately 400 participants from across Pakistan.

It is for the first time that expression of almost all forms of art will be showcased together. Painting, sculpture, drawing, printmaking, textile design, dance, music, film, puppet shows, theatre, fashion design, and performing arts from across the world will be available to satisfy the cultural aesthetic of the people. Simultaneously, literature from different lands is also being focused. An international literary conference is also being held in the ambit of the festival. The discussant will comprise prominent writers and poets from about 20 Asian and African countries. They will assemble under the banner of three-day ‘International Writers Conference-Islamabad 2019’. Their deliberations and poetry recital sessions will engage literature and academia circles to promote understanding of the cultures and mores of people from different parts of the world. All these art forms are being presented in venues open and accessible to the public.