Every year, both at and away from UNESCO's Headquarters in Paris, UNESCO celebrates International Women’s Day, a flagship event which highlights at the international level questions relating to the empowerment of women and the promotion of gender equality and equity.
Gender equality : Make it your business - International Round Table
10 March 2008 - from 3 to 5.30 p.m., Room II
The theme of this year’s International Round Table, "Gender Equality: Make it Your Business!" is based on the United Nations’ official theme for International Women’s Day 2008: "Financing for Gender Equality." The Round Table will bring together fundraisers, businesswomen and men, and high level philanthropists who draw on their wealth to support and undertake initiatives in favor of women’s empowerment and gender equality, and who bear a strong conviction for the advancement of this cause.
The panelists will include: Sigrid Rausing, a publisher, anthropologist and founder of the Sigrid Rausing Trust, which provides grants in the field of women’s rights, among others. Ms Rausing has been awarded the Women’s Funding Network’s Changing the Face of Philanthropy award; Sandra Reichel, the Director of the Generali Ladies Linz, an annual Women’s Tennis Tournament held in Austria, who is actively involved in supporting the UNESCO – Sony Ericsson Women’s Tennis Association Tour Partnership for Gender Equality; Paola Gianturco, former businesswoman and public relations executive, who today works as a philanthropist and photojournalist, documenting women’s lives in countries around the world and donating all proceeds from her publications to women’s organizations; Lydia Alpízar Duran, Executive Director of the Association for Women’s Rights and Development; Amalia Eugenia Fischer Pfaeffle, Founder of the Fundo Angela Borba - Recursos para Mulheres, among others. Organized by the UNESCO Division for Gender Equality
Ivorian evening with Dobet Gnahore - Concert
11 March 2008 at 7 p.m., Room I
Dobet Gnahoré – Ivorian singer, dancer and percussionist — sings Mandinga melodies to Congolese rumbas, and takes us everywhere from the Ivorian ziglibiti to the Cameroonian bikoutsi, from Ghanaian highlife to Zulu choirs, carried along by colorful and varied jazz tunes. In her songs, Dobet Gnahoré denounces the pillage of the African continent and conveys ironic messages about polygamy. Dobet sings in different African languages: Bete, Fon, Baoule, Lingala, Malinke, Mina and Bambara. Her group is composed of Nabil Mehrezi, Colin Laroche de Féline and Boris Tchango.
Evening organized by the UNESCO Division for Gender Equality in collaboration with the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie
1000 Women for the Nobel Peace Prize – Art Exhibition
10 - 21 March 2008, Salle des Pas Perdus
Vernissage 10 March 2008 at 6 :30 pm
The exhibition portrays the 1000 women who have collectively been nominated for the 2005 Nobel Peace Prize. It provides basic information on each one of the 1000 Peace Women to demonstrate the various ways in which they contribute to building peace in the world. The portraits, which take the form of colorful postcards, aim to give the public the feeling of meeting each of these women. The central motivation of the exhibition is to highlight, recognize and render visible their work in the pursuit of peace, in order to build a global movement of women peacemakers. The exhibition also focuses on conflicts and their direct consequences on women, and underscores the importance of women’s full and equal participation in conflict prevention, peace building processes, and the consolidation of peace. The exhibition is accompanied by a film on the topic, and a book featuring the portraits and stories of the 1000 women will be made available for purchase. This event is a follow-up to the international conference Women Peacemakers organized by UNESCO on the occasion of International Women’s Day in 2007.
Organized in collaboration with the organization "1000 Peace Women Across the Globe"
Alice in ‘Cinemaland’ – Art Exhibition
10 – 21 March 2008, Rooms Miro I and II
Vernissage 10 March 2008 at 6:30
This exhibition, which consists of panels, paintings, posters, sculptures, and cinematographic apparatus from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, traces the life and history of the world’s first female filmmaker. Starting in 1986, she made some of the first fiction films of early cinema. The work of Alice Guy is inspired by her vision of the world around her, showing us her era and the societal events of her time. The year 1908 marks the end of her cooperation with the Gaumont company for which she had produced more than 350 films. In 1911, Alice Guy left France to create the SOLAX studios in Fort-Lee, New Jersey, United States of America. At that time, Alice produced as many as ten shorts and one feature-length film each month, in a variety of genres: suspense, comedy, fantasy, opera, police thrillers, westerns, etc. Alice Guy represents our collective memory, and as such, Thierry Peeters, great-grandson of Ms. Guy, and the association « Les amis d’Alice Guy-Blaché », (Friends of Alice Guy-Blaché) invite you to discover the memorable life and cinematographic works of this exceptional woman.
Organized in collaboration with Thierry Peeters and the association «Les amis d’Alice Guy-Blaché»
Engaged African Art with a woman's touch – Exhibition of paintings - By Brigitte Rabarijaona
10 – 21 March 2008, Salle des Actes
Vernissage 10 March 2008 at 6:30 pm
This exhibition can be seen as a voyage of discovery. Passionate about drawing from a young age, Brigitte Rabarijaona began by drawing flowers, in particular orchids, which are very common throughout Madagascar. In 1998, the artist set out to follow the traces of impressionism and registered at the Faculté de Cergy where she developed a profound interest in lyrical art. However, the main objectives of the Malagasy painter remain the same: to decry international problems, which have long captured her attention, and to express her commitment to African women through her art. The originality of Brigitte Rabarijaona’s work is evident from the exhibition’s very first painting, entitled: "Tonga soa ê" (welcome): as always, there is a flower, symbol of hospitality, and behind it, the color blue which is omnipresent throughout her work. The exhibition can be seen as an open book: the story it tells, according to the artist, is "the story of a continent that suffers and of its bleeding population." An ambitious woman, Brigitte Rabarijaona dreams of the day her work will serve as "a means to support the education for peace and solidarity." Indeed, this painter intends to stir things up in the world of painting.
Women from day to day – Exhibition of kakemonos, paintings and engravings - By Mercedes Uribe
10 - 21 March 2008, Room Miro III
Vernissage 10 March 2008 at 6:30 pm
Mercedes Uribe has lived and worked in Paris since 1980. In 1993, she fortuitously discovered the magic of engraving. Particularly attracted by strong water and aquatint, which correspond with her character as a painter, she enjoys experimenting with colors. Laureate of the Prix Corot in 2003, she is a member of the Estampe Chaville, of the Ateliers du Père Lachaise Associés, and of the Groupe Corot-Grave. Mercedes Uribe has presented her works in a number of countries, including in her homeland, Colombia, as well as Australia, China, Hungary, and Spain. Ms. Uribe, who has over 20 years of experience as an artist, lives from her art, and her paintings are known for their shimmering and contrasting colors, which portray an imagined land, women, and the Latin American landscapes of her childhood, where dreams are entwined with poetry and love. Her works, scattered fragments of an autobiography, emerge from her hand and extend from her subconscious and inner being. Her collections are recognized for their force and symbolism. Surrealist portraits of women living in a man’s world thus emerge. Her commitment brought her to become part of the "United World College", an institution which promotes education, intercultural dialogue and community service.
Organized in collaboration with the Colombian Embassy to France and the Colombian permanent Delegation to UNESCO
After the literary boom: Colombian writers and poets
– Exhibition of photos, texts, poems and books
10 - 21 March 2008, Hall Ségur
Vernissage 10 March 2008 at 6:30 pm
The period following the exceptional era of Garcia Marquez, Alvaro Mutis and others of their generation was perceived as one of stagnancy for Colombian writers. But in reality, this was not so: later generations of Colombian writers – less preoccupied with visibility – concentrated their energy and their lives to writing, and writing alone. Many of this generation ventured beyond the frontiers of geography and language. Interestingly, women were numerous among the writers of this generation, and their success lies in refusing to be reined into a sole branch of literature, and refusing to allow their gender to define their writing. Rather, their writing aimed to reflect their native land, Colombia, a country of diversity. This exhibition highlights a representative group of four female writers and 15 poets who dazzle readers with their creativity and virtuosity, and indeed contribute to the promotion of women’s empowerment and gender equality in this specific area.
Organized in collaboration with the Colombian Embassy to France and the Colombian Permanent Delegation to UNESCO
Mutilations, women's cries – Documentary Film - By Benedicta Tariere Peretu and Yves Marie Kerlen
Projection of the documentary film - 25 March 2008 at 6:30 pm, Room XI
This feature length documentary film (1h20 min.), focusing on the struggle to eliminate the practice of female genital mutilation around the world, is produced by the association Kerciné in collaboration with the World Health Organization. Benedicta Tariere Peretu, Ph.D. in sociology, and Yves Marie Kerlen, Ph.D. in medicine, work in the international arena to raise awareness among decision-makers and the general public about various socio-cultural realities through the production of documentary films.
The documentary will be followed by a debate with the film producers.
Organized in collaboration with the Kerciné association.