Leonardo da Vinci Exhibition to Open in Kampala, As Uganda Museum gets facelift

H.E Massimiliano Mazzanti, the designated Italian Ambassador to Uganda [3rd from left] at Uganda Museum, October 24, 2019. /AT Photo
By :
Baluku Geoffrey

Kampala – The Embassy of Italy has offered to give Uganda Museum a facelift ahead of the Leonardo Opera Omnia Exhibition due in Kampala next month.

Speaking to the media earlier today, H.E Massimiliano Mazzanti, the designated Italian Ambassador to Uganda said that, “To mark the occasion [Leonardo Opera Omnia exhibition], the Embassy of Italy in Kampala, with support of the private sector (generous companies like Youma Builders and Equatorial Power), will renovate the main hall of Uganda Museum to give it a fresh look.”

Adding that, “the power system at the Museum will be stabilized and solar panels be installed to ensure outdoor lighting.”

He revealed that only two cities in sub Saharan Africa had been selected to host the exhibition – Addis Ababa and Kampala whose expo will be held at Uganda Museum from November 19, 2019 to January 5th, 2020.

Amb. Massimiliano noted that the inauguration of the exhibition will open the Italian Cultural week (18-24 November 2019). The week that is dedicated to Italian Culture and cuisine will see many exciting events with the participation of a rock band and some chefs, who will come directly from Italy for the occasion.

“The Italian music band “Ladri di Carrozzelle” composed of people with disabilities, will bring to Uganda their mission of social inclusion and promotion of “diversity” through music,” Mazzimiliano added.

According Massimiliano, the Italian Tourism Board will ensure participation of five chefs from Piedmont region (north of Italy, famous mainly truffles fungus and wines) and one of their managerial representatives.

They will be engaged in a training session for the students of Uganda Hotel and Tourism Training Institute in Jinja and will also participate in Rolex vs Pizza competition on November 21st, he added.

He went on to thank key partners that have made Leonardo Opera Omnia possible in Uganda. These include City Tyres, Equatorial Power, the Italian Trade Agency, Qatar Airways, Sheraton Kampala Hotel, Stanbic Bank Uganda and Youma Builders.

Others are Uganda Ministries’ of Science and Technology and that of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities alongside its sister Agency Uganda Tourism Board (UTB).

Commissioner Lyazi Vivian (L) and H.E Massimiliano Mazzanti, the designated Italian Ambassador to Uganda. /AT Photo

Speaking on behalf of Uganda’s Minister of Tourism, Mr. Lyazi Vivian, a Commissioner at the Ministry of tourism, said that, “Uganda was privileged to have been selected as the African country to host this exhibition that is moving around the world.”

“This opportunity is significant and manifests the important relationship that Uganda shares with the people of Italy,” he added.

He particularly noted that the relationship [between Uganda and Italy] was old and precious sighting examples of when in 1906, the Duke of Abruzzi, Amedo Luigi climbed the Rwenzori and documented its geographical features for the first time. The Margherita peak is named after the Queen of Italy and indeed over the years, “Italy has supported various development programmes in Uganda,” he said.

Mr. Lyazi said that this exhibition was bound to raise the profile of Uganda Museum and indeed Uganda as a heritage destination, adding that it was an opportunity for regional visitors and international tourists to enrich their experience of rare and internationally acclaimed works of art in Uganda.

Ms. Claire Mugabi, Marketing Manager at Uganda Tourism Board (R) and H.E Massimiliano Mazzanti. /AT Photo

On her part, UTB Marketing Manager, Ms. Claire Mugabi reiterated the Ministers words, saying that, “The choice for Uganda to be the first to unveil this collection shows our tourism capacity and capability, highlighted with the trust put in us by the Italian ministry of foreign affairs and international cooperation as well as the embassy of Italy in Uganda.”

“This partnership and collaboration shows our increasingly successful partnership with Italy, who can contribute greatly to our cultural exposure with their equally diverse and rich history,” she added.

Ms. Mugabi called on the tour operators, hotels, airlines, churches, mosques, academia, schools, the media and all interested organizations to mobilize their clients, students, followers and friends to come and benefit from this opportunity.

– Leonardo Opera Omnia –

Leonardo Opera Omnia is an innovative and ambitious project, born from a collaboration between the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and RAI (the Italian Public Television), to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Leonardo Da Vinci’s death. It aims at sharing the Italian cultural heritage by displaying seventeen high definition and true-to-scale reproductions of Leonardo Da Vinci’s masterpieces. The original paintings are scattered in various locations and museums all over the world.

A curator from Italy will travel to Uganda to take care of the entire set-up of the exhibition and the logistic costs of the initiative will be sponsored by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

Leonardo Opera Omnia unveils the great master’s life and genius through his pictorial work. The exhibition is at the same time an art exposure and an educational experience, intended to show case the culture of the Renaissance era through visual information, painted by Leonardo in the 16th century.

According to the organisers, the exhibition brings together the cultural and artistic aspects of Leonardo’s works with the innovation and technology applied for the reproductions on display; this is the final and uppermost tribute to Da Vinci’s passion for inventions and scientific experimentation.

Though many people around the world recognsie the work of Leonardo, they may not have had the chance to see his artworks in Europe; with the project Opera Omnia, the opportunity to see and enjoy the works of Leonardo Da Vinci, like “Mona Lisa” or “The Last Supper”, is now being given to the majority of Ugandans and tourists at large.

– Leonardo Da Vinci –

Leonardo, (1452 – 1519) was born in a small village in Tuscany (Italy). Son of a Florentine notary, Leonardo’s eclectic creative talent marveled his own era and the ones who followed, with his fame reaching every corner of the globe.

He created the two most famous paintings in history: the Last Supper and the Mona Lisa. Driven by passion for innovative studies, he anticipated many of the great scientific discoveries ahead of time (from calculators to helicopters, hydrodynamics to solar power), depicting him as history’s most creative genius.”

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