|T h e I w a n o P r o j e c t|
H i s t o r y
The basis of the project is to be found in the interactive communication between two so different civilizations, the Japanese and ours, European civilization, which is manifested in an international group exhibition realized on hand-made Japanese paper produced by Mr. Heizaburo Iwano.
The tradition of the production of Japanese hand-made paper is particularly strong in Fukui prefecture and Imadate Town. Mr. Iwano, after whom the project was named, or rather his family has been in the paper producing business for over 300 years. The production is still done in a traditional way which is something I had a chance to see for myself during my recent stay in Japan on which occasion we made about a 1000 photos that will be presented on a CD ROM. The general idea was that artists find their inspiration in rich Japanese cultural heritage represented with Japanese hand-made paper, so that in the combination with our cultural tradition a brand new cultural value be created. The Iwano Project I exhibition was held in Novi Sad at The NOU gallery which organized the event, from 14th till 21st March 2000. Ten artists created their works of art on 50 Japanese hand-made papers. The exhibition was later moved to Banja Luka and set at The Gallery of Fine Arts of Republika Srpska, where it was open to public during August 2000.
The Iwano project II exhibition was held in Novi Sad at Vojvodina Gallery from 21st May till 4th June 2001. Nineteen artists from Yugoslavia and abroad took part with works of art created on 55 Japanese hand-made papers of even larger scale this time (195 x 110 cm). The exhibition was later moved to Banja Luka, Gallery of Fine Arts of Republika Srpska where it was open for public from 21st June till 9th August 2001.
The exhibition was then set in Belgrade, at the "Progres" gallery from 21st August till 5th September, while the opening in Vrsac at "Konkordija" gallery is bound for 30th October.
The Iwano Project III/2002. starts this fall only this time, artists from neighboring countries will be included as well.
The center of the project is in Novi Sad from where it spreads in all directions representing a blend of Japanese, Oriental culture and our European one with the intention to create a brand new artistic quality or at least intensify our mutual communication primarily in the field of art, but not excluding other types of co-operation.
In the region there are no similar initiatives or projects especially because this project represents personal initiative not backed by government budget, which has both its advantages and drawbacks.
More information can be found at the projects official web site www.iwano.org.rs
Thank you for the interest you showed in this unique project