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17.09.2003 / Presse

A Kyrgyz Buddy Bear in Berlin

More than a hundred bears, painted by artists from all over the world, are being exhibited at the central square of Berlin, near the Branderburg Gates and globe. There is a Kyrgyz bear among them. It was drawn by one of talented painters of Kyrgyzstan, Honored Artist of the Republic Rifkat Bukharmetov. He became a participant of the UNICEF second international charitable event "United Buddy Bears 2003", opened on July 29 in Berlin by heads and staff of foreign missions accredited in Germany, representatives of different ministries, departments, organizations, and German members of parliament. A special catalogue was published for this event with artists? biographies and their concepts of drawing bears.

Rifkat Bukharmetov, used motives of his famous picture "The Dream", which was given the highest award at the World Modern Art Exhibition in Los Angeles in May 1998. Bukharmetov described his creation this way, "My bear is as light as maternity. Children are an important part of people?s life in Kyrgyzstan, as well as in other countries. Friendliness and tolerance make a genetic nature of the Kyrgyz".

The exhibition will work until November 2003. After its closing, all exhibits will tour 25 cities of the world. The tour will be over in New York City, where all bears will be sold at auctions, and proceeds will be used by UNICEF for projects supporting children.

This is a second charitable event, where Kyrgyz artists participate. People?s Artist Yuristanbek Shigaev represented Kyrgyzstan in the first exhibition "United Buddy Bears 2002" in Berlin.

For more information, please contact Galina Solodunova, UNICEF Assistant Communications Officer (996 312) 61 12 24, 61 12 25, 61 12 26. Email:

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Source:  UN in Kyrgyzstan