Ambassador Kierscht organizes a vernissage to present the art in her residence


Ambassador Kierscht organizes a vernissage to present the art in her residence

Asalamu alaykum. Good evening. Welcome! Thank you very much for being here tonight. I’ve been looking forward to having you all at my house for this vernissage for quite some time. And I’m delighted to introduce my mother, Dr. Kierscht, who is from Minnesota.
This is Mama’s third visit to Mauritania, and each time she comes back, she tells me how much she appreciates the generous Mauritanian hospitality.

Art in Embassies was established in 1963, with the aim of creating temporary exhibitions and publications like this – [hold one up] please take one with you tonight – to give international audiences a sense of the quality, scope and diversity of American – and Mauritanian art and culture. I hope people who have never visited the United States can personally experience the depth and breadth of our artistic heritage and values.

Today, we are exhibiting 20 works of art specially designed for this residency, taking into account the American-Mauritanian relationship. They display the beauty and strength of both countries. If you haven’t seen them all, I invite you to discover them in the dining room, the living room and the foyer. Feel free to take pictures of them and post them with the hashtag #ArtinEmbassies.

Ambassador Kierscht organizes a vernissage to present the art in her residence
Ambassador Kierscht organizes a vernissage to present the art in her residence

I selected for this exhibition works of art that were personal to me. My home states of Minnesota and North Dakota are beautifully depicted in the landscapes of Harriet Rosenbaum and Reginald Marsh. My former neighbor Jim Walker, a professional photographer for the Smithsonian, took the ten impressive photos of the Washington DC area, showing the splendor of the American capital, inside and out. Kathleen Stafford, an American who worked at the International School here for a few years, paints beautiful watercolors with typical West African subjects, including the Chinguetti Mosque. The “Easter” sculpture, by my father-in-law Norm Buktenica, brings back childhood memories of growing up in North Dakota and shines brightly as a symbol of renewal.

I also hope that you will visit very special paintings in the dining room [point]. My classmate Tim Nielsen painted these three famous American abolitionists – Frederick Douglass, Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth. These incredibly brave, intelligent, and courageous Americans shine a light on the most egregious period in American history, one that reverberates to this day. But they also represent the spirit to overcome seemingly impossible trials and tribulations. And these paintings also remind me that the work continues to this day – the importance of working for racial equality, of course, but also gender equality and the inclusion of people with disabilities. These three paintings remind me of what President Biden said last year – about how, as a nation, we “must embed fairness and justice into what we do every day – today. , tomorrow and every day.

With that, I’d like to let you know again how happy I am to have you here this evening. A very warm welcome from my mom and me.

Please enjoy the rest of the evening. Thank you for taking the time to experience aspects of American culture through art. Walk around and watch, but also enjoy each other’s company. Say hello to an old friend and meet someone new. Thanks. Thank you shukran.

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