Ministry of Culture launches first national competition to document Saudi industrial heritage

Updated 15 July 2019

Ministry of Culture launches first national competition to document Saudi industrial heritage

  • The contest is open to all citizens and residents through www.engage.moc.gov.sa
  • Participants will be evaluated by specialized panels before the winners are announced in November.

JEDDAH: The Ministry of Culture launched the first day of the national competition to document the Kingdom’s industrial heritage on Sunday July 14. The competition aims to establish the first national database for all industrial sites that fall under this category, with the participation of Saudis and residents from all social segments.

Open to all citizens and residents through www.engage.moc.gov.sa, the prizes will total to SR1m ($266,000). It is part of the Industrial Heritage Program announced by Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, Minister of Culture, in April.

Prince Badr Al Saud, Minister of Culture and Governor of the Royal Commission for Al-Ula tweeted the announcement: “Following the launch of the Industrial Heritage Preservation project with the help and efforts of my fellow colleagues in supporting the program, we launch today a competition to strengthen the concept, our country has a base for Industrial Heritage sites.”

Industrial heritage includes the remnants of the ancient industrial culture, whether technological, social, architectural or scientific, and consists of buildings, machines, factories, mines, refineries and warehouses.

Running from July 14 until October 6, the competition is divided into three categories. The first focuses on the discovery of the sites and requires participants to send pictures, videos and basic information. The second requests participants to tell stories and detailed events that affected the industry and social life through voice recording or videos.

BACKGROUND

Industrial heritage includes the remnants of the ancient industrial culture, whether technological, social, architectural or scientific, and consists of buildings, machines, factories, mines, refineries and warehouses.

The third urges the participants to document the site’s story by researching its history and impact on the industry and society with a prize that will amount to SR300,000 ($80,000).

The organizing committee put the competition’s conditions and details on its website, including an explanation about the concept of industrial heritage, the conditions of its classification and the quality of heritage sites.

Participants will be evaluated by specialized panels before the winners are announced in November. The competition’s criteria focus on the efforts exerted by the participants in finding the sites and the quality of their information.

The Kingdom is characterized in its industrial heritage legacy by its leading role in the oil and gas industry, desalination plants, petrochemicals industry and minerals and cement mining and their supporting transport system, such as ports and trains.

On April 30, the Kingdom became the first country in the Arab world to commit to investing in its industrial heritage with the establishment of a dedicated preservation society.

Speaking to Arab News in April, Dr. Miles Oglethorpe, a board member of the International Committee for the Conservation of the Industrial Heritage who attended the society’s launch, said the Kingdom had a vast industrial heritage to draw on that could “deliver social, economic and political benefit that reinforces Saudi society.”

He told Arab News: “Industry is extremely important, and the history of industry is that which lies behind how we live today. All across the world there are hugely important industries that have employed people and changed the world around them. Sometimes they have rapidly altered the environment and landscapes, sometimes not very nicely, other times very spectacularly.


Arabic anime voice actors prepare for new show at Riyadh expo

Updated 17 November 2019

Arabic anime voice actors prepare for new show at Riyadh expo

  • Waheed Jalal's voice acting as “Treasure Island” antagonist John Silver has captivated generations

RIYADH: Visitors to Riyadh’s first anime expo stopped by the first panel on Saturday unaware that they would be leaving the stage with memories renewed of their favorite voice actors of all time.

Waheed Jalal and Jihad Al-Atrashi will forever live on in the hearts of fans of “Grendizer” and “Treasure Island (Takarajima),” the two shows that introduced the Arab world to anime in the 1970s.

Jalal, whose voice acting as “Treasure Island” antagonist John Silver has captivated generations, expressed how delighted he was to be with the audience.

“I want to thank you and your Kingdom of generosity and culture,” he said.

Al-Atrash, who portrayed Duke Fleed, echoed his sentiments: “You are great people with great values, thank you to the people of the Kingdom that stand next to people of all nations.”

Jalal was touched by the audience’s love and warm welcome, “You guys are the reason we continued this far, without you it wouldn’t have been possible,” he told them.

“We’re persevering to this day because people loved these characters we portrayed so much, our other works pale in comparison,” he added.

Jalal said that the reason “Grendizer” remained with so many people is because of the values and morals depicted in the show, teaching generations to be loyal and loving to their nation and their people.

Artist and creator Ibrahim Al-Lami. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)

The voice acting pair talked about the importance of speaking in formal Arabic in these shows. Jalal said it’s because “you’re presenting to the entire Arab world.”

Local dialects would be difficult for others to understand, so we must all aspire to perfect our formal Arabic, added Jalal.

Before concluding the talk, a teaser was played of the first Saudi anime “Makkeen” by artist and creator, Ibrahim Al-Lami, who announced that 60 percent of the work was completed through local efforts.

“We’ll introduce a new work that is by our people, written by our people and voiced by our people,” he said to the audience.

The work will feature characters voiced by Jalal and Al-Atrash, who have become symbolic to the Arab anime world. “I told them, this work wouldn’t be complete without you two,” said Lami on his choice of voice actors. “We want these works to see the light of day. We need to provide the new generations with tales of our own,” added Al-Atrash when asked why he wanted to partake in the anime.