SIAO


SIAO

Held biennially in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso's capital, the International Art and Craft Fair, Ouagadougou--better known by its French name as "SIAO" ("Le Salon International de L Artisanat de Ouagadougou") is one of Africa's most important trade shows for art and handicrafts.

The next SIAO will take place from 31st October to the 9th of November 2008.

Why the International Art and Craft Fair, Ouagadougou

The Ouagadougou International Art and Craft fair is a framework promoting African handicrafts. It was initiated by the National Board of Foreign Trade (ONAC) and the Chamber of Commerce of Burkina Faso. The government of Burkina Faso came up with the idea to create the SIAO for two purposes: economical and social advancement. The government of Burkina hoped that the handicrafts would reduce the deficit of the trade balance of the country. Hence, they decided to create a framework for the promotion and the exchange of African handicrafts that would be a mean to facilitate their access to the international market. Moreover, the government wanted to create a medium that would facilitate reflection and consultation on problems related to the development of handicraft in African countries. Finally, the government of Burkina Faso wanted to train and supervise the craftsmen for self promotion. On the social, SIAO. (2006A). Why SIAO and background. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/exhibition.htm ] intention side, the SIAO mentioned that the International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou, is a way to make easy the dissemination and expansion of African handicraft as a mean for expression and culture.

Background of the SIAO

The potential of the arts and crafts industry is huge. Hence from the 2nd to the 9th November 1984 the government of Burkina organized a trade show for arts and crafts products named the 'Handicraft 84'. This show permitted the government to measure how huge Burkina Faso handicraft potentialities are and allowed the government to see how important the African handicrafts were to public. As a result the government of Burkina Faso thought it would be wise to hold this show periodically: every two years. This show would allow people from diverse backgrounds to meet, negotiate, discuss, deal and sell their products

IAO (1988)

The 1st international meeting of African handicraft took place from the 20th to the 27th of February in 1988 in Ouagadougou. This first meeting had two major aspects : the fair itself and a colloquy which is an international forum promoting African handicraft.

The fair

The advertising campaign, made on national and African levels, brought together 244 Burkinabe craftsmen and 20 exhibiting countries such as Algeria, Benin, Burundi, Central African Republic, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Morocco, Mauritania, Niger, Rwanda, Senegal, Chad, Togo, Tunisia, Guadeloupe, France, Pakistan, Philippines.

The financial assistance of the European Development Fund (EDF) and the implementation in France, Italy and Germany, enabled to show the interest of participating to the SIAO, hence attracted in Ouagadougou dozens of professional visitors and buyers. The atmosphere during the fair allowed to combine what is useful with what is pleasant and turn the first SIAO into a successful event.

The colloquy

The colloquy, is an international forum, concerned about the African handicraft. The participants to the colloquy used to reflect on , the current situation and prospects of African handicraft. In addition, the colloquy confronted craftsmen with trainers and specialists enabling them to tackle the problems that hamper the development and promotion of African handicraft.

The communications by the different representatives on their respective experiences allowed to reach conclusions among which the most important is the Ouagadougou Declaration of Intention. The participants in the forum recommended that the Ouagadougou International Arts and Craft Fair be institutionalised and held every other year.SIAO. (2006B). SIAO, from 1988 to date…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/retrosiaoang.htm ]

IAO (1990)

The second meeting of SIAO was held from the 27th October to the 3rd November 1990.

The second meeting was attended by 30 countries in which 24 African countries and about 200 Burkinabe craftsmen who exhibited in various fields like batik, painting, bronze, basket making, sculpting, furniture, textile, shoe making, arms manufacturing, pottery, jewellery, ceramic, traditional medicine, agricultural tools, energy, invention, etc... This second meeting of the SIAO focused on creativity. SIAO 1990 was held in a site of about 41,000 m² in which 5,000 m² were covered. There were 270 exhibiting stands built with a typically African architecture and 187 Burkinabe craftmen exhibiting their products. Furthermore, 15 African countries were exhibiting and 22 countries were participating to the colloquy which had the following theme African Handicraft and Creativity. The second meeting of the SIAO generated CFA 55,000,000 in addition, three creativity awards were given by UNESCO. SIAO 1990 was also attended by several European professionals of handicraft and 120,000 visitors registered.The colloquy on African handicraft and creativity led to the creation of a co-ordinating committee for the development and promotion of African handicraft (CODEPA). SIAO. (2006B). SIAO, from 1988 to date…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/retrosiaoang.htm ]

IAO (1992)

The 1992 meeting of SIAO was held from the 24th October to the 1st November. Its theme was : African handicraft in the face of the international market. 11 African countries took part to its activities also 260 Burkinabe craftmen. In addition, 165,720 national visitors were registered and some dozens of professional visitors.

IAO (1994)

The 4th meeting of the Ouagadougou International Arts and Craft Fair was held from the 29th October to the 5th November 1994 and its theme was Handicraft and Design.

This Edition was attended by countries such as Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, China, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea Conakry, Mauritius Island, Kenya, Madagascar, Mali, Morocco, Mauritania, Mayotte, Niger, Nigeria, Central African Republic, Senegal, Chad, Togo, Tunisia and Zaire. Several companies as well as specialised firms and many professional visitors were present.SIAO. (2006B). SIAO, from 1988 to date…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/retrosiaoang.htm ]

IAO (1996)

The 5th meeting of the SIAO was held from the 26th October to the 2nd November 1996. Its theme was Handicraft and design.About 23 African countries and non African countries attended this meeting. In addition, 350,000 visitors and 300 professional visitors were offially registered.SIAO. (2006B). SIAO, from 1988 to date…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/retrosiaoang.htm ]

IAO (1998)

The 6th meeting of the SIAO was held from the 30th October to 8th November 1998. Its theme was Handicraft and vocational training. The 6th meeting is considered as a meeting of innovations. In fact, the SIAO has been granted, an exhibition surface of over 8,000 m².SIAO. (2006B). SIAO, from 1988 to date…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/retrosiaoang.htm ]

IAO (2000)

The 7th meeting of the SIAO was held from the 27th October to the 5th November 2000. About 400,000 public visitors were registered and 30 countries took part to its activities. TheTheme was African handicraft and regional integration.SIAO. (2006B). SIAO, from 1988 to date…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/retrosiaoang.htm ]

IAO (2002)

The 8th meeting took place from the 25th October to 3rd November 2002. About 27 countries were represented. The 8th SIAO registered 1440 exhibitors, 95 buyers and professional visitors and 250,000 public visitors. The theme was African handicraft and environment

IAO (2004)

The 9th meeting of the SIAO was held from the 29th October to 7th November 2004. About 32 countries were represented. The 9th meeting of the SIAO registered 2652 exhibitors, 226 buyers and professional visitors and 352,000 public visitors. The theme was Investing in African handicraft, a promising sector.SIAO. (2006B). SIAO, from 1988 to date…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/retrosiaoang.htm ]

IAO (2006)

The tenth meeting of the International Art and Craft Fair, Ouagadougou will be held from the 27th of October to the 5th of November 2006. More than 30 African countries are expected to take part to this fair. The theme will be African Handicraft and Fair Trade. [ name="SIAOC". (2006C). International Art and Craft Fair, Ouagadougou October 27-November 5, 2006. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/siao2006/home2006.htm ]

IAO (2008)

The eleventh meeting of the International Art and Craft Fair, Ouagadougou will be held from the 31st October to the 9th of November 2008. More than 35 African countries are expected to take part to this fair.

Major Products Display

There are many African art and craft products displayed during each meeting of the International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. The major products displayed during each SIAO are the calabash art products, the Jewellery products, the Bronze and Iron products, the textiles and apparel products, the Musical Instruments, the Toys Leather products, the furniture and home decor products, the painting and batiks, the pottery and ceramics, the recycled crafts, the stone and wood sculpture.

Calabash Art

The art of the calabash is a new technique whose handling requires dexterity and finesse. Young Burkinabé craftsmen compete with regard to creativity and the products made arouse the admiration of all. Despite the fact that they are fragile, these products can be both useful and decorative. [ name="SIAOD" SIAO. (2006D). SIAO: The shop window of African Handicraft…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/products.htm ]

Jewellery Art

Jewellery has always been the used by African women. Jewellery is an object of prestige and social rank. The African jewellery left royal courts to celebrate all over the world today the beauty of the African woman. From gold to bronze, from silver to amber, varied materials are used to make amazing jewels of a design that is increasingly refined and elegant. Today, this jewellery is crossing borders to enter into the shops and homes of the Western world. [ name="SIAOD" SIAO. (2006D). SIAO: The shop window of African Handicraft…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/products.htm ]

Pottery and Ceramics

Pottery is one of the oldest trades in Africa and the world. With increasingly developed tools and technology, the craftsman is able to create a variety of beautiful yet useful objects of unique design. It is hardly a surprise that today, with the introduction of modern equipment and thanks to new cooking, colouring, and moulding techniques, the ceramic crafts are a total success that highlights the know-how and creative genius that existed already. [ name="SIAOD" SIAO. (2006D). SIAO: The shop window of African Handicraft…. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/products.htm ]

How to Participate to the SIAO

In order to take part to the SIAO’s activities, each participant needs to register either as an exhibitor or a professional buyer or as a journalist. The exhibitors are required to register before August 31st of each coming meeting. As an example, for the 10th meeting, the exhibitors were required to register before August 31st of 2006. The registration form is in (PDF) and can be downloaded from the SIAO’s official web site. The form has to be sent by fax at the following number (00226) 50 37 32 60. In addition, all payments are made in Francs CFA. The payments may be paid in cash at SIAO or may be sent by bank transfer, Western Union, Money Gram, or similar method. Furthermore, the registrants are responsible for payment of all associated transfer fees. 50% of the registration fee may be paid at time of registration, with balance due September 28, 2006. Moreover, in order to take part to the African biggest art and craft fair trade show as a professional buyer or as a journalist, you need to fill a form available also in the SIAO’s Web Site in (PDF) or you can dial up the number (00226) 50 37 32 60. [ name="SIAOE" SIAO. (2006E). How to participate to SIAO. The International Art and Craft Fair Ouagadougou. Retrieved on March 20th, 2006 from http://www.siao.bf/english/whynisit.htm ]

External links

* [http://www.siao.bf Salon International de L'artisanat de Ouagadougou]

References


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