Caption: Virginia Gamnaet & Sara Lefebvre: graduates of the School of Fine Arts of Paris-Cergy (E.N.S.A.P.C.) in France with masi pieces they made during their research trip.
By ASHTOSH SINGH
The Embassy of France in Suva in conjunction with the Fiji Museum had organised a masi workshop last Tuesday, which will included the participation of two Parisian students, Virginia Gamma and Sara Lefebvre.
The students who have been in Fiji for one month to study village life and more importantly the fabrication of masi will be presenting their findings at today’s workshop.
The one-day workshop took place as a series of debates that brought together participants from different backgrounds – masi makers, contemporary artists and various cultural institutions. It encouraged the exchanging of ideas and different kinds of practical experimentation.
As stated by Ambassador Gilles Montagnier: “With its recent rise and exposure in the international market, Fiji masi fabrication and design has piqued the interest of many individuals and institutions internationally. Fiji Airways magnificent Airbus design is a perfect example.”
“I believe we will see a lot more people coming to Fiji and to the Pacific to study traditional arts,” he added. “The Embassy will continue to support the development and protection of traditional arts in Fiji”
In closing he remarked that: “This event is also the occasion for me to call on Fiji for the ratification of the UN Convention on Cultural Diversity, which is promotes the protection of this kind of unique culture and tradition.”
Also in attendance at the workshop were students from the University of the South Pacific, local artists, Fiji Museum and Embassy of France staff.