Islamabad: Talented Pakistani art students helped spread the excitement of the London 2012 Games onto the roads of Rawalpindi, by painting one of their buses using traditional Pakistani ‘truck art’ to celebrate the Olympics and the connections between UK and Pakistan.
The British High Commission in Islamabad and the National College of Arts Rawalpindi jointly organised the project to celebrate the diverse and interlinking cultures of Pakistan and the UK.
The event helps highlight the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad which will take place alongside the landmark sporting event. The London 2012 Cultural Olympiad is the largest cultural celebration in the history of the modern Olympic and Paralympics Movements. The culmination of the Cultural Olympiad is the London 2012 Festival, providing over 10 million chances to see free world-class events throughout the UK.
London 2012 is the first Olympics to offer an international sporting legacy, connecting over 12 million young people with sport in 20 countries through the International Inspiration Programme. Thousands of young people in Pakistan have been inspired to take part in sports and physical education in the past year, soon after the British Council launched the programme in the country. Pakistan is the 17th country in the world to join this programme and has committed to reach over 1 million Pakistani children in two years.
On the occasion of the event, British High Commissioner Adam Thomson said:
“From the ornate horse-drawn carriages of the Raj to the pioneering craftsmanship featured on the Kohistan Bus Company’s fleet in the 1920s, Pakistan has a long-established tradition of decorating vehicles. The British High Commission is using this centuries old tradition to bring the 2012 London Games to the streets of Pakistani.
I congratulate the students of National College of Arts and the truck artist who supported them on blending the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympics Games and this colourful Pakistani tradition, with such creativity and visual impact.
“2012 is an exciting year for the UK. We have been working hard behind the scenes to make this a magnificent year for everyone. The Olympics and Paralympics mean the spotlight of the world will be on the UK – what a great time to show how dynamic and culturally diverse we are.
“Leading artists from all over the world, including from Pakistan, are coming together this summer in the UK’s biggest ever nationwide arts festival – a chance for everyone to get into the spirit of London 2012 through dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, film and digital innovation.”
Khalid Ibrahim, Coordinator of National College of Arts, Rawalpindi campus commented:
“Here in Pakistan, the brightly coloured trucks and buses are customised to show off where the vehicle and driver are from, or to pay homage to a famous movie star or a well-known military leader. Some trucks may be adorned with quotes from movies or verses from poems. We have adopted this tradition to express some thoughts and links that comes to one’s mind when we think of the UK and its connections with Pakistan.”
For more information, contact:
British High Commission
Tel: +9251 201 2000
Cell: +92300 500 5306