Festival designed to refine the Danish image of Asia
The Images of Asia festival will be held in Denmark from 8 August
through 26 September. Four hundred fifty Asian artists and
intellectuals are participating. This ambitious event is being
held in eight
Images of Asia is part of the Images series. This program has
been organised by the Copenhagen International Theatre, numerous
NGOs and cultural agencies since 1991. The objective of the festivals
is to increase the national knowledge of non-western cultures.
By now three editions of Images of Africa have been presented (in
1991, 1993 and 1996), as well as an Images of the World (in 2000).
The main sponsor is Danida, the Royal Danish Ministry of Foreign
A study of the ideas the Danes have about Asia from 2001 is the
basis of the Images of Asia program. That study showed that both
young people and adults have a very one-sided image of the region.
Their primary association with Asia is poverty, over-population
and violation of human rights. The group has little geographic
knowledge of the area and confuses features of one country with
those of another. The respondents think that Denmark can help elevate
Asian’s living standards through development aid and economic
investments. They consider the notion that events in Asia might
be able to influence Danish society an impossibility. They do not
think that Asia and Asians have anything to do with their daily
Thus the researcher’s recommendation to the steering committee
of Images was:
Organise events in which the visitors experience the different
physical features of Asian countries;
Devote attention to reciprocal relationships between Denmark and
Asia, for example trade relations;
Show what daily foodstuffs and consumer products come from Asia.
The following Images festival will be held in 2006 with the Middle
East as its theme.