Friends of the Arts and Decoration Circle of the ILO came in large numbers – about a hundred people – to participate in the opening of the exhibition held from 17H00 to 19H00 on Tuesday, 2 October 2018 in the ILO Hall of Colonnades. The location of the exhibition is remarkable due to its large windows, letting light filter in unrestricted, and in being a busy passageway giving an opportunity for the artworks to be viewed by the greatest number of people possible. It was a great event and the participants were able to wander through the Hall of Colonnades and discover the fruit of the work of the 19 exhibiting artists. The name “Arts and Decoration Circle” has really been justified this year by the variety of works presented; abstract and representative paintings and pictures, sculptures, faience painting, jewellery and floral decoration (the latter courtesy of Madeleine Hamilton, Madeleine Brandt and Gudrun Jesse).
At the beginning of his address, François Kientzler, President of the Circle, gathered the exhibiting artists around him. After welcoming the guests, he recalled that the exhibition was the result of the work done by the artists of the Circle over the past months and that the exhibition was a privileged moment to present it. Artists often work in isolation, even in secret, and such an exhibition is an opportunity for friends and family to gather and share the artists’ pleasure and pride in their work.
Then the President thanked all those who participated in the preparation of this exhibition and allowed its realization, in particular the ILO’s DCOMM Service in charge of internal and external communication, Ms. Kiran Mehra-Kerpelman, Alexander Belopopsky and Marcel Crozet. The INTERSEV Services, FACILITIES, SECURITIES are also key elements in the organization of the exhibition with the final authorization being given by Mr. Guy Ryder, Director General, who permits the exhibitions to take place in the ILO. The President mentioned the three people exhibiting for the first time this year, two of whom are still working in the ILO. He warmly welcomed the opening up of the Circle to younger artists, which in his view confirms the interest in the Circle’s exhibitions. Five years ago when the Circle was rejuvenated, it was far from certain that it would be a success but every year there is another step up in the quality of the exhibited works – which was also the general opinion of the guests present. The Circle currently has about 35 members.
Next year, 2019, will be the ILO’s centenary year. The Director General would like ILO retirees to participate in this event. The Bureau of the Section of Former ILO Officials, in meetings with the representatives of the administration, expressed the interest of the ILO Arts and Decoration Circle in contributing to the Centenary at some point during 2019.
In conclusion, the President thanked all the participants for their presence, which he emphasised is a great encouragement to the Circle to continue its activities and development. He wished everyone good luck in this exhibition and invited them join him for a drink in the Espace Gobelins. It was a very convivial moment shared between friends.