Mr. Salman F Rahman, MP, Honorable Advisor to Prime Minister on private sector and investment was present as the Chief Guest while Mr. KM Khalid, Honorable State Minister for Cultural Affairs; Mr. Liaquat Ali Lucky, Director General of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy were present as the special guests during the inaugural ceremony of 6th Dhaka Art Summit. A good number of national and international curators, designers and audiences from different corners of the world attended the program.

It is noteworthy to mention that the Dhaka Art Summit (DAS) is an international, non-commercial research and exhibition platform for art and architecture related to South Asia. After 3 years gap due to Covid-19, the summit came back in a bigger way and expected to pull a crowd of more than a million.

As you know from BGMEA we set up an art installation titled “SEW (Sustainability, Environment and Women) highlighting the progress made by the industry, impact on society, and our future direction. During the remarks by Mr. Salman F Rahman at the inaugural ceremony, he particularly praised the art installation of BGMEA and mentioned about the social transformation that the RMG industry is making which was depicted through the installation. I am glad to share with you that the BGMEA installation got remarkable appreciation. I personally attended a number of dignitaries at our installation and explained them about it. For your kind information, we have conceptualized a tapestry in the background of the installation, where sustainability, environment, and women together draw the story of transformation and our future. The world is depicted through a web of invisible threads that form the fabric of our individual, societal, and planetary existence. The fabric is so intricately sewn together that when any one of the threads starts to come off its integrity is threatened. This art installation also portrayed the efforts, vision and priorities of BGMEA.

In addition to our art installation, BGMEA has extensively collaborated with the organizer of the Dhaka Art Summit ‘the Samdani Art Foundation’ and with famous Belgian artist Miet Warlop, who treats art as an experience. She presented a performative installation titled “who wears the pants”. A group of six female garment workers wearing trunkless, armless and headless pants and heels walked across the Dhaka Art Summit venue, taking stock of the artworks and the exhibition, laughing hysterically that anyone could take life seriously and releasing their own irreverent gestures in the pant for the audience to take in. We found it as a great opportunity to associate our industry in a different sphere.

Art and culture is an integeral part of the society.  Particularly, while we talk about changing the perception and building image, we can reach out a large part of global audience through our art and culture. I believe our presence in the Dhaka Art Summit and similar platforms of international stature will help us change the narrative about our industry.