Ségolène Royal: The Kingdom is known for its heritage and root­­s. This exhibition represents the present and the future.

Dr. Khalid Al-Angari: Saudi Vision 2030 represents a very significant milestone for our culture, and this exhibition is a realization of the vision.

H.E. Ségolène Royal, French Minister of the Environment, Energy and the Sea, Mr.  Jack Lang, President of the Arab World Institute in Paris, and H.E. Ambassador Khalid bin Mohammed Al-Angari inaugurated the Saudi Contemporary Art Exhibition in Paris on Thursday evening. The Exhibition brought together 17 Saudi artists from all over the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and more than 54 works of art.

H.E. Ambassador al-Angari said in his opening remarks that the exhibition celebrates culture and art as bridges of communication between civilizations, and as tools for positive dialogue between peoples. He pointed out that the Arabian Peninsula was settled by many civilizations and ancient cultures, from the Stone Age to the Islamic era, which has its origins on the Arabian land. This has had a remarkable impact on sciences and arts.

"The creativity represented by our Saudi sons and daughters in various fields reflects the Kingdom's investment in individuals since its inception. This investment has formed a solid foundation to move forward into the future. ­Saudi Vision 2030 underscores this deeply-rooted creativity by bringing to the fore discussions about the importance of investing in all cultural fields—notably the arts, heritage and museums," His Excellency said.

H.E. mentioned that the Kingdom has prioritized the importance and relevance of culture in Franco-Saudi relations, as this element sheds light on a deep connection that supports and enriches this historic partnership, which links the Kingdom and France. This historical connection and continued partnership underscore how French, Islamic and Arabic cultures complement each other in a way that creates a stronger and more enriched human civilization.

 Cultural events such as this one are the essence of cultural dialogue, and a continuation of cooperation between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Republic of France.

H.E. Minister Ségolène Royal continued, saying she had come to the exhibition to see Saudi Arabian contemporary art, which intrigue her, especially in light of the Kingdom's heritage and civilization. This important exhibition brought together the Kingdom and France in a way that represents the present and future of cross-cultural dialogue.

In 2012, the Pompidou Center organized a similar Hajj exhibition with the Institute of the Arab Public in the city of Dammam, which was a great success. The Cultural and Historical Institute of the Louvre also coordinated an exhibition that featured historical elements of the Kingdom and Arabian Peninsula.

The King Abdul Aziz Museum is yet another example of cultural activities undertaken and encouraged by the Kingdom.

H.E. Minister Ségolène Royal added that, through this exhibition, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has underscored the importance of promoting culture.

The Kingdom and the entire Gulf region, in general, have together become a birthplace for creativity. Royale pointed out that the Kingdom, the Land of the Holy Places, has become a beacon of culture and contemporary visual art today. Artists, photographers, and intellectuals are the means of communication between peoples. Contemporary art is an expression of our current time and space, it is an island in the middle of the ocean that represents knowledge and communication.

At the end of her speech, she praised the artists who participated in the exhibition, noting that France looks forward to receiving more Saudi artists who represent the Saudi experience in France.

A delegation from the Shura Council attended the opening. The delegation was invited to France by the French Parliament, members of the diplomatic corps, and influencers in French art and culture. The exhibition received considerable attention by the French media.

It is worth mentioning that, earlier this month, the first version of the exhibition launched with great success in Cannes, in the south of France, after which it moved to the capital city, Paris.