Painting and Patronage

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Painting & Patronage is a prominent cultural and artistic exchange programme between Saudi Arabia and the international community. It was founded in 1999 by Prince Khalid Al Faisal,[1] son of the late King Faisal bin Abdul Aziz. The organisation is chaired by Anthony Bailey, OBE.[1]

President Jorge Sampaio of Portugal and Prince Khalid Al Faisal open the Sintra exhibition

The principal activity is to build cultural bridges of artistic and educational understanding between the Arab world and the West through establishing a deeper level of understanding of each other's distinct and diverse cultures and traditions.[2] Programme activities include the hosting of summer schools, community outreach programmes,exhibitions, scholarships and lecture series and special events.[3]

The first Painting & Patronage initiative took place at the Banqueting House in London in June 2000 under the patronage of The Prince of Wales and Prince Khalid Al-Faisal and consisted principally of an exhibition of watercolour and oil paintings by both princes. A free entry summer school for young artists was established between The Prince's School of Traditional Arts and the King Faisal Foundation sponsored by British corporates BAE Systems and Shell.[4]

The Prince of Wales presides over the opening of the London exhibition

A return exhibition took place in Riyadh in 2001 attended by both princes. The bilateral events were said to be the largest ever artistic exchange programme between the United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia.[5]Queen Elizabeth II visited the London exhibition and the Riyadh exhibition was opened by King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia.[1]

The third Painting & Patronage took place between Saudi Arabia and Portugal [6] and featured paintings by Prince Khalid Al-Faisal and followed the same format as the London and Riyadh initiatives. The initiative was granted the high patronage of and was opened by the President of the Portuguese Republic Jorge Sampaio [3] at the Sintra National Palace.[7] The fourth initiative took place in April 2007 in Riyadh. It consisted of a large exhibition of Portuguese contemporary landscape artists and was opened by Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz and the Portuguese Minister of Culture Isabel Pires de Lima. In March 2010 The President of Montenegro opened an art exhibition in Riyadh.

In 2007 Painting and Patronage was granted the High Patronage of King of Saudi Arabia and is an on-going royal initiative which plans further exchanges with other nations including Brazil in 2008.[1] In March 2010 The President of Montenegro opened an Painting & Patronage exhibition in Riyadh [8] and during the same month a new Painting & Patronage programme was announced by The Prince of Wales.[9]

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