By Victor Asije
The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Nigeria on Monday announced its first cultural exchange project and a supportive budget to outstanding Nigerian artists.
The embassy’s Head of Delegation, Mr Michel Deleen, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the budget was meant to promote exchanges between Dutch and Nigerian artists.
“For the very first time, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Nigeria will be engaging in a cultural exchange with Nigeria.
“Let me announce that under our international cultural budget, we are now going to be promoting a link between individual artists from Nigeria and the Netherlands, to enhance our cultural exchanges.
“We have realised that there are huge cultural exchange opportunities in Nigeria that should be harnessed.
“We now have a small budget for supporting exchanges between Dutch and Nigerian artists,’’ he said.
Deleen, who enjoined Nigerian artists to avail themselves of the budget, however, said that the grant was meant for outstanding Nigerian artists.
The Head of the Netherlands Delegation in Lagos also said that there would be a criteria for the selection of the benefiting artists.
“We have standards for would-be Nigerian artists to benefit from the grant. They really need to be credible, transparent and outstanding, to fit into our criteria for selecting artists abroad,’’ he said.
Deleen said that already, an exhibitor from the Netherlands, Mr Kadir Van Lohuizen, would be participating in this month’s Lagos Photo exhibition.
He said that Lohuizen would be doing an exhibition on “Where shall we go? The human consequences of the rising sea level’’.
Deleen also said that another Dutch artist, Ms Anja Sijben, would be coming to Lagos in December, to participate at the Iwaya Cultural Arts Festival.