I have to be grateful to the holy ONE, and perhaps to more than one person on earth, if at this point of my life I was inspired to devote my interest to ART.

Since I started working on this project my life has taken on new hues of colour and I have been able to give free rein to my passion for art, especially painting which has fascinated me since I was a young boy.

I can still see myself as a six-year-old contemplating the rupestrian carvings in Africa or when I was slightly older strolling past the paintings in the corridors of exhibitions by Sanguineti, Incegnieri or Putzolu, which were usually held in the Italian Club in Asmara. These memories probably nurtured my love of strong shades and bright colours coupled with the dusty,  dappled hues of the desert which I now see in the artwork by painters from countries around the Indian Ocean. When I look at works by artists from Zanzibar, Kenya and Tanzania, I am immediately transported amidst smells and magical  ambiences to a time when my young, innocent eyes led me through the East African savannah or along riverbeds in the Eritrean lowlands in which only sand flowed for ten months of the year or in the wild, dense forests of Ethiopia. I see entire valleys full of tiny yellow flowers as far as the eye can see which are tinged with such bright, vibrant colours at sunset that they bring to mind a volcano on the verge of eruption or an immense cauldron in which God is dramatically melting all the gold in the world.

These are the colours that give me the belief and the passion to carry out the “Spherique Indian Ocean Art Project” while my memories conjure up feelings that grant me the desire and drive to succeed with this extremely ambitious project. So far everyone to whom I have shown this project has been captivated, offering their help and expressing their complete approval. This exhibition in Zanzibar features artists from the Maldives, Kenya, Uganda, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Zanzibar and  was preceded by an exhibition of artists from Kenya, which was held in Malindi in January. It will be followed by a very important event designed to truly launch the project. In addition to exhibiting works of art at this event, we would also like to invite artists from the Seychelles, Mauritius, South Africa, Mozambique, Madagascar, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Myanmar. Our goal is for the 2015 event to encompass all countries from in and around the Indian Ocean and invite all the artists who are exhibiting their works of art to attend. The final goal of the “Spherique Indian Ocean Art Project” is to promote the teaching of art and to support artists from all these countries, many of which may not be rich but their certainly enjoy an incredible wealth of talent and colours. Finally, I would like to thank you for attending this event and also ask you to remove the contact lenses that your social position and society in general has accustomed you to wearing over the years. I invite you to stroll through the works of art and see them through the same eyes you had when you were six-years-old so you can enjoy every brushstroke and fully understand what they intend to express. I hope you enjoy the experience.

Carlo Cipolini