Mrs Françoise Remarck, Minister of Culture and Francophonie, was received in audience by First Lady Dominique Ouattara

Mrs Françoise Remarck, Minister of Culture and Francophonie, was received in audience by First Lady Dominique Ouattara, on Tuesday April 9, 2024. The meeting, which took place at the First Lady’s office in Cocody, was attended by a number of personalities, including Mr. Abou Kamaté, Managing Director of the African Performing Arts Market (MASA), Mrs Chantal Djédjé Bagnon, Deputy Managing Director of MASA, Mr. Koné Dodo, Director of the Abidjan Cultural Centre and MASA organization advisor, and Mr. Henri Nkoumo, Director of Live Arts at the Ministry.

The main objective of this meeting was for Mrs Françoise Remack, Minister of Culture and Francophonie, to present Côte d’Ivoire’s 2024 cultural agenda to the wife of the Head of State. The Minister underlined the dynamic behind the organization of these cultural events on the shores of the Ebrie Lagoon. According to Mrs. Remarck, the successful organization of the African Cup of Nations (CAN) 2023 has attracted attention and revived interest for the country in the cultural sphere.

The meeting was an opportunity for participants to discuss future initiatives aimed at strengthening the cultural sector in Côte d’Ivoire and consolidating its reputation as a cultural hub in West Africa. As a result, her department intends to maintain the flame and enthusiasm of the Ivorian people by hosting these various cultural events.

“We would like to thank the First Lady for agreeing to meet with us to discuss the cultural agenda for 2024. After the successful ACN, which enabled us to showcase all our country’s cultural, football and other assets. The President of the Republic had said that it would be the most beautiful Cup ever organized. And indeed it was, because first of all our national team won a 3rd star. But also because, in the eyes of the world, we have shown all the wonderful things that Côte d’Ivoire can offer in all fields, and particularly in the cultural field. And after all that energy, Côte d’Ivoire is attracting more people than ever. And Côte d’Ivoire is also organizing major events that will set the pace for 2024,” said Françoise Remarck, Minister of Culture and Francophonie.

Within this framework, the first event of the year is the 13th edition of the African Performing Arts Market (MASA), which will take place from April 13 to 20, 2024 in Côte d’Ivoire. This year’s theme is set as: “Youth, innovation and entrepreneurship: levers for the development of the African arts and entertainment industries”.  This 13th edition of MASA will see the participation of 250 volunteers, nearly 1,000 artists, 130 troupes, 300 professionals, 300 shows from 33 countries in Africa, America, Asia and Europe in the seven disciplines of the event. MASA 2024 will also attract 115 national and international journalists, reaching over 150,000 spectators worldwide. MASA 2024 will be a resolutely popular event, with programs in all 10 communes of Abidjan. Two countries will be our guest of honor, namely Rwanda and South Korea. This edition of MASA will also pay tribute to Mrs Henriette Dagri Diabaté, Honorary Grand Chancellor. As such, a prize will be awarded to a woman or a women’s group. This prize will be perpetuated so that the work of the Honorary Grand Chancellor can be recognized.

Alongside MASA, major events will also be taking place internationally with the 60th Venice Biennale of Arts scheduled for November 17-24, 2024 in Venice, Italy. Côte d’Ivoire will be taking part for the 5th time in its history, alongside some 90 other nations. The Venice Biennale was created in 1895. It is the most prestigious in the world. It is an incomparable opportunity for cultural diplomacy, welcoming the world’s leading art professionals and promoting the entry of exhibited artists into the world’s greatest collections. 

Throughout the year, major events will be taking place in Côte d’Ivoire. Indeed, Côte d’Ivoire will be hosting the world of cinema. Before the end of the year, the country will also host a major event organized by WAMEU and ECOWAS. All WAMEU and ECOWAS troupes, artists and the entire cultural sector will be present in Côte d’Ivoire by the end of September. Côte d’Ivoire will also be present at CANNE and many other events. “The ambition is high. It is commensurate with what the President of the Republic has brought to the country on the occasion of this ACN, where today, Côte d’Ivoire is at the center of the eyes of the whole world, and of course we wish to make our contribution”, recalled Mrs Françoise Remarck.

The First Lady, Mrs Dominique Ouattara, congratulated Mrs Françoise Remack and the other participants on their commitment to promoting Ivorian culture.