“Goa in many ways is the ideal place to kick-start the workshop as it is known foremost as the hub for artists, be it music, literature, or theatre”, said Moe Chiba, Section Chief & Programme Specialist for Culture, UNESCO New Delhi.
Recommendations for stronger policies to protect and promote the creative industries in Goa will be the focus of a UNESCO symposium on 21 and 22 August.
Around 30 key players from Goa’s Directorate of Arts and Culture; creative professionals and NGOs working in the field of visual arts, music, the film industry, publishing, and the media will work with UNESCO experts on the 2005 Convention on the Protection and the Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions to learn and explore new ideas.
“The 2005 Convention provides a robust and innovative framework for government, working together with civil society actors, to strengthen the cultural and creative industries at all levels”, said Mr Raj Isar, International Expert leading the UNESCO workshop in Goa.
Goa has a lot to offer in terms of creativity. The Art and Literature Festivals bring together writers, poets, artists and performers. Any event in Goa is known to attract large audience,one such is the International Film Festival of India.
“Reflecting the wealth of cultural traditions, the Government adopted a Goa Cultural Policy 2007 to draw a roadmap for the 21st century with the aim to usher creative potential of the people of Goa at the local, national and international level”, said Mr Prasad Lolayekar, Director of Arts and Culture, Government of Goa.
Goa is also among India’s top 10 states with the highest number of state schemes for artists and craftspeople. It has 13 schemes, including financial assistance to local artists, scholarships, pensions and grants for cultural organizations, theatre and music groups (2015 government data). However, the reach of Goan creative professionals in international markets is still lagging behind.
The workshop in Goa is the first in a series on the 2005 Convention that UNESCO New Delhi is organizing across different Indian states. With a population of over 1 billion people, this state-wise approach in India allows for appreciation of the vast wealth of cultural players and activities across the country. It’s expected that concrete action will be formulated based on the local needs of creative professionals.