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Since April 28, 2017, the Non-Governmental Museum Named after Nicholas Roerich went defunct with the illegal seizure of its building and territory.

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20.10.2022

October Indo-Russian Cultural Festival in the Roerichs' Estate in Naggar

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The first half of October was marked by the bright events in the International Roerich Memorial Trust. The traditional Russian-Indian Festival of Culture gathered many guests from different countries at the Roerichs’ Estate.

This year the Festival was dedicated to the three great dates: the 75-th Anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations between Russia and India; the 120-th Birth Anniversary of George Roerich and the 30-th Anniversary of the International Roerich Memorial Trust (IRMT) in Naggar. The Festival's main guest was Mr. Denis Alipov, Russian Ambassador to India, Vice President of the IRMT. Among the honoured guests of the Festival were the representatives of the Kullu district administration, the members of the Trustees Board of the International Roerich Memorial Trust, the delegation from the International Centre of the Roerichs (Moscow) as well as scientists, researchers, journalists, artists, numerous admirers and followers of the great Russian family.

The Festival was opened on October 5, on the Helena Roerich Remembrance Day. The participants were greeted by Mr. Suresh Kumar, the Indian IRMT Curator, and Mrs. Larisa Surgina, the Russian IRMT Curator working in the Trust on deputation from the International Centre of the Roerichs (Moscow). The main participants of the day were the children, students of the Helena Roerich Academy of Arts, and their teachers, as well as the group of volunteers from the International Center of the Roerichs from Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus. The main event was the international festival of children and youth creativity "Russia-India: From Heart to Heart". In the framework of the Festival there was a drawing exhibition of children from Russia and a painting competition among Indian children of the Kullu Valley. The State Himachal Museum (Shimla) supported the contest.

On the same day an exhibition of a group of Indian artists headed by Arup Chandra from Pathankot was opened in the Exhibition Hall of IRMT.

In the Conference Hall an exhibition of artists Elena Yakovleva from Russia and Natalia Bazhenova from Kazakhstan were presented to the guests.

The day ended with a playing program and master classes for children, prepared by the Russian guests of the IRMT.

The Nicholas Roerich's Birthday on October 9 was traditionally opened with a Shanti puja at the cremation site of Nicholas Roerich – the Samadhi of the great artist.

Then there was a festive ceremony of hoisting the national flags of India and Russia and the Banner of Peace with the participation of the chief guests of the Festival as well as the laying of floral garlands on the bronze busts of Nicholas and Helena Roerich and on the sculptures of Svetoslav Roerich and Devika Rani.

An exhibition by the famous Indian artist Harsh Inder Lumba from Delhi was opened in the Exhibition Hall. The exhibition was dedicated to the memory of Harsh Lumba's beloved husband.

The main event of the day was the unveiling of the monument to George Roerich near the Urusvati Institute. The author of this monument as well as the author of other monuments in the Roerichs' estate was the Russian-Ukrainian sculptor Aleksey Leonov and the initiative of this joint Indo-Russian cultural project to perpetuate the memory of the Roerichs in the Kullu Valley came from the International Center of the Roerichs (Moscow). The project was supported by the Kullu District Administration and the International Foundation "Dialogue of Cultures – One World", as well as by the friends and volunteers of the ICR and IRMT. The cultural program with the participation of Indian children, the students of the Helena Roerich Academy of Arts for Children, as well as the song and dance group of Russian girls, studying at the International Council for Cultural Relations in New Delhi, was held on the open stage of the Green Theater of the IRMT.

On the same evening, the meeting with Mrs. Deepti Naval, a famous Indian film actress, writer and public figure, was held in the IRMT Conference Hall. Deepti Naval introduced her book "A Country Called Childhood". One of the chapters of the book is dedicated to the actress' father and his memorable meetings with Nicholas Roerich.

One of the most important events of the Festival was the scientific two-day Conference "Cultural Heritage of Himalayas and Work of the Roerichs: Significance for the Future," which took place in the Conference Hall of the IRMT on October 10–11. The Conference was organized by the Himachal Pradesh Museum (Shimla) in collaboration with the International Roerich Memorial Trust (Naggar, Kullu) and the International Center of the Roerichs (Moscow), with the support of the Historical Film Studio "Faraon" (St. Petersburg). The distinguished guests of the Conference were Mr. Ashok Thakur, Lifetime Trustee of the IRMT, Mr. Hari Chauhan, Curator of the Himachal Pradesh Museum, and Mrs. Yulia Aryaeva, Head of the Cultural Department of the Russian Embassy in India. The presentations of Indian and Russian scholars and researchers at the Conference raised genuine interest of all participants and guests of the Conference.

The International Festival of Culture at the Roerich Trust became a real festival of Russian-Indian friendship and cooperation. And the Festival is going on. We invite everyone to visit the artists' exhibitions, playing programs and master classes for children and other interesting events taking place at the Roerichs Estate in October 2022.



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