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  Arts & Living
"Bucharest — The Capital of Francophonie"
Romanian Ambassador to Seoul Valeriu Arteni

The Embassy of Romania in Seoul is organizing the exhibition "Bucharest. The Capital of Francophonie" from 10 to 27 January in the Joongang Ilbo building downtown Seoul.

This exhibition presented under the auspices of the Bucharest Summit of International Organisation of the Francophonie, held in September 2006, happily coincides with the moment of the accession of Romania to the EU, marking Romania's reintegration into the European family to which it always belonged.

"Bucharest. The Capital of Francophonie" is a selection of the most representative images typical for the capital city of Romania, one-time called "Little Paris," a place of contrasts and of paradoxes with a long history and a splendid architecture which reveals sumptuousness and refinement.

With a population of over 2,000,000 inhabitants, Bucharest stands out against the background of Romanian spirituality as a highly significant effigy, as a pre-eminent space both historical, cultural as well as by its sentimental value.

The 19th century anchored Bucharest into a modern cultural European context and many of the artists asked to build or decorate its palaces were educated in France or brought from the time's "capital of the arts," Paris. This fact explains the appearance of an important number of public buildings at the beginning of the 20th century that were built in an academic, eclectic French Renaissance style that was to be imitated and multiplied in thousands of dwelling-houses all over the city.

The Romanian's love of French things could be probably explained not necessarily by roots or the identical structures of two languages, Romanian and French, but by the fact that many sons of boyars studied arts and architecture in the Paris universities. Consequently, Bucharest changed architecturally on the French model.

Thanks to the French spoken by the Romanian intellectuals educated in France, Romanian culture entered into the circuit of the world values

The Summit of the Francophonie which was held in Bucharest, in September 2006, rised awareness of the public with regard to the place of the Capital City within the European cultural patrimony.

In addition to the exhibition , the Romanian film "Orient Express' will be screened with English subtitle at the center. The screening is scheduled for 11 and 13 of January, and will continue in the first decade of February, 2007.

This film is about nostalgia and fatality – a descendent of an old Romanian boyars family, Andrei Morudzi, retreats to his castle in Romania, between the two world wars, after having lead an eventful youth. There he is seen upon as a rare bird by the local folk, due to his strange attitude towards life and his exquisite manners, which don't fit in the way of life of the villagers. But, in the end, despite trying to distance himself from the local people, he can't but influence their humble existence - a theme which is successfully approached by the famous Romanian director Sergiu Nicolaescu.

This film gives the movie-goers the opportunity to meet the famous Romanian actress Maia Morgenstein who gained an international reputation with her performances.

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