Event promotes Saudi Arabia’s historical identity with graffiti

A Saudi graffiti artist paints the wall which reflects the Kingdom’s heritage. (SPA)
Updated 11 November 2017
0

Event promotes Saudi Arabia’s historical identity with graffiti

RIYADH: In an event held in Al-Bujairi neighborhood in Diriyah accompanying the first Saudi Antiquities Forum, the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) set up a special place to draw Saudi antiquities in 3D, with the help of a sketch artist.
The events included four sections of graffiti, under the supervision of Saudi visual artists, reflecting the Kingdom’s heritage and antiquities, and introducing visitors to the Kingdom’s cultural heritage embedded in history.
Majed Al-Hayzan, manager of the touristic events and projects at the SCTH, considered the forum’s accompanying events an important factor to raise awareness and strengthen national sentiment among citizens on the Kingdom’s cultural heritage.
The events also included a studio for children, represented in an awareness-raising corner, to introduce them to the Kingdom’s archaeological and historical sites through coloring and drawing, under the title “Our Talents Are in The Hands of Our Children.”
Recently, the courtyards of the King Abdul Aziz Historic Center in Riyadh turned into a theater for events and activities in conjunction with the launch of the first Saudi Antiquities Forum.
These events helped introduce the Kingdom’s non-materialistic culture, and were attended by large audiences which were eager to enjoy the events and shows.
The events included education and awareness-raising plays representing everyday life stories about discoveries and excavations, as well as folk shows including the Saudi Ardah, and models representing major Saudi archaeological and heritage sites (Madain Saleh, Salwa Palace, Historical Jeddah, Al-Okhdood, and Al-Rajajeel) on the grounds of the National Museum in Riyadh.
A number of artisans participated in these events that also included handicraft shows, popular food parlors, men’s costume shows, stories told by famous writers and many others.
Visitors also watched a live show of excavations and discoveries of antiquities, by a specialized team. This show was accompanied by a “Colors” exhibition which showcased a collection of pictures featuring the Kingdom’s archaeological and heritage sites.


Big-screen business in Saudi Arabia will be billion-dollar industry by 2030

Saudi Arabia is expected to become a significant box office market. (AFP)
Updated 37 min 17 sec ago
0

Big-screen business in Saudi Arabia will be billion-dollar industry by 2030

  • Saudi has huge opportunities and is expected to become a significant box office market worth $1 billion (SR3.75 billion)

DUBAI: The big-screen business in Saudi Arabia will be a billion-dollar industry by 2030, according to experts, as regional and global movie operators queue up for a ticket into the Kingdom’s hugely profitable movie market.
Saudi Arabia is expected to amass the largest share of the cinema business in the Arabian Gulf region by 2030, with hundred of cinemas and thousands of screens set to open across the Kingdom over the next 12 years.
Within months of Saudi Arabia formally ending a 35-year-long ban on cinemas, three cinema operation licenses were awarded to operate in the Kingdom, the first was to AMC Theaters, an American chain owned and operated by Wanda Group. It opened the Kingdom’s first modern cinema on April 18 and plans to open around 40 cinemas in 15 cities in Saudi Arabia over the next five years, and between 50 to 100 cinemas in about 25 cities by 2030.
Shortly after, the second license was awarded to VOX Cinemas, now one of Saudi Arabia’s biggest movie operators. It plans to open 600 screens in Saudi Arabia in the next five years, the same number of screens as the company’s regional footprint combined.
In July, it was announced the the third license had been awarded to the Al-Rashed United Group — Empire Cinema — which plans to build 30 theaters in the country over the next three years. And last month, a fourth license was awarded to Lux Entertainment Co., which plans to open 300 cinemas across the Kingdom within five years.
VOX, which plans to open 80 new screens over the next 12 months, says the Kingdom will form half of its overall revenues in the Middle East over the next five years.
“Saudi has huge opportunities and is expected to become a significant box office market worth $1 billion (SR3.75 billion),” said Cameron Mitchell, CEO of Majid Al-Futtaim Cinemas, of which VOX Cinemas is a subsidiary.
He said the Kingdom’s box-office market is expected to become “one of the largest” in the world, with a majority of its 32-million population under the age of 30. “The market is massive and full of opportunities as the population is young and enthusiastic about cinema.”
Will Saudi Arabia ever host the world premiere of a Hollywood movie? No one’s saying right now, but with such a covetable box-office market, it may only be a matter of time.