The American University of Kuwait commemorated Kuwait's 50 years of independence and 20 years of liberation, by holding a week of festivities on campus on February 20-23. The week-long celebrations included several different student design and art exhibits, sand sculpting workshops, live music, lectures and much more. Several student clubs and organizations participated in these festivities by working alongside the University in organizing several of their own events celebrating Kuwait's history and culture. AUK's Patriots Club hosted an event titled 'Kuwait Flag on Canvas' where they created the Kuwaiti flag with individual hand prints. Each person selected a color from the Kuwaiti flag and, using paint, stamped the appropriate section. The end result being a large canvas depicting the Kuwaiti flag made of hand prints from the AUK community of students, staff and faculty.
The highlights of the celebrations included a remembrance of the legacy of Kuwaiti poet and singer Abdullah Al-Fadhalah through an exhibition and live music organized by AUK's Arabian Heritage Project (AHP). An ensemble played Al-Fadhalah's music for the AUK community accompanied, on the Violin, by AUK student Salem Al-Mathkour. AUK's Finance Club held an exhibit detailing Kuwait's economic history from 1886 to the present with a display of rare pictures and artifacts from Kuwait's history including a model of a Boom, representative of Kuwait's long tradition of trade and pearl diving. The exhibit also included all of Kuwait's old currencies dating back to the Rupee. One of several art exhibits titled 'Celebrate Kuwait' allowed AUK students to express their celebrations through different mediums of art. Students sculptures, drawings and paintings were on display all week. AUK's Assistant Professor of Studio Arts/Graphic Design William Andersen said of the exhibit, "This exhibition is an excellent opportunity for students to examine as well as celebrate their countries history and achievements." Another entertaining event saw Internationally known Sand Sculptor Raymond Wirick hold workshops where students learned about the techniques of sand sculpting and commemorated Kuwait's celebrations by creating a large sculpture that includes the Kuwait Towers as well as other landmarks and a banner with the words 'Celebrating 50 Years of Independence' all made of sand.
On the last day of celebrations AUK hosted two live music performances. The first, Chris Byars Jazz Septet performed alongside Kuwaiti drummers, a collaborative effort between AUK's AHP and the American Embassy. The audience enjoyed the sound of Jazz combined with classical Kuwaiti drums. AUK also hosted famous Kuwaiti singer Faisal Al-Sa'ad for a live concert open to the public. AUK students, staff and faculty along with friends and family enjoyed a night of live Kuwaiti music followed by dinner to conclude the week long celebrations.
AUK Graphic Design Students, encouraged by Professor Marian Hosseinnia, participated in a logo design competition, "AUK Kuwait 50/20 Logo Competition" where they had to design a logo that reflects Kuwait's 50 years of independence and 20 years of liberation to be used by AUK in all publications pertaining to the week-long events as the official logo. A panel of judges from AUK's staff and faculty voted for the winners, AUK students Maryam Ghomsha and Farnaz Heidari.
Patriot Club Organizes "Kuwait flag on Canvas"
President of AUK Dr. Winfred Thompson participates in painting the Kuwaiti flag
The Kuwaiti flag with AUK students' hands
Students take part in painting the Kuwaiti flag
Patriot Club members and organizers of "Kuwait flag on Canvas"
Abdullah Al-Fadhalah old collection including: Musical Instrument, documents and photos
From left Mr. Mohammed Al Mulla and his wife with Dr. Lisa Urkevich
Mr. Mohammed Al Mulla, owner of the Abdullah Al-Fadhalah Collection, performing some of Abdullah Al-Fadhalah's songs
Traditional Kuwaiti Music Band performing some of Abdullah Al-Fadhalah's famous songs, accompanied, on the Violin, by AUK student Salem Al-Mathkour
AUK's Finance Club
Group photo of the Finance Club members
Students' work from "AUK Kuwait 50/20 Logo Competition"
Students' work from 'Celebrate Kuwait' exhibition
Sand sculpting workshop
Internationally known Sand Sculptor Raymond Wirick
Old Traditional Kuwaiti games corner
Chris Byars Jazz Septet performed alongside Kuwaiti drummers
The American Embassy representative speaks at the beginning of the jazz concert
Faisal Al-Sa'ad Concert
Released by the PR & Marketing Department on the 01st March 2011
Photography by the AUK Public Relations & Marketing Department (C) 2011