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The International Festival “Sarajevo Winter” is a traditional meeting place for artists and citizens from all over the world.
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International Sarajevo Festival “Sarajevo Winter” is traditional crossroad where the artists and citizens of the World meet. The festival was held for the first time from December 21st 1984 to April 6th 1985. For the 36 years of existence, the Festival became inseparable part of the Sarajevo city and citizens lives.
During 1407 festival days, Sarajevo Winter had 4,125 programmes with more than 3.500.000 visitors and 43,000 participants. Festival “Sarajevo Winter” kept rolling during all upcoming years, without a break and it became a symbol of life, freedom, creativity and it became a meeting point of diverse and different cultures and civilizations of the World.
Together with the International Peace Centre (IPC), festival ‘Sarajevo Winter’ was the organizer and initiator of project “Sarajevo, Cultural Centre of Europe”, from 21 December 1993 until 21 March 1994. (period between two cultural centres of Europe, Antwerpen, ’93 and Lisbon ’94). This idea was supported by Sarajevo City Assembly and 11 000 the most famous people from all the World, as well by the most important institutions of Europe and Avignone Festival. During that period IPC and Sarajevo Winter organized in more than 100 cities exhibitions, concerts and debates on all continents. Of special importance is organization of 60 international fairs in Europe, Asia and Africa, promotion of Graphic Map and top quality Bosnian and Herzegovinian literature and art. IPC and Sarajevo Winter organized X biennial of young artists of the Mediterranean and Europe 2001 in Sarajevo and they chair the BJCEm from 2001 until 2007. During 12 biennial BJCEM IPC and Sarajevo Winter represented over 500 young artists of B&H.
IPC and Sarajevo Winter renewed initiative for Sarajevo to be declared for the capital of Europe 2008. Sarajevo City Assambly together with other 43 B&H cities, cities of neighboring countries and many other cultural centres of Europe and all relevant European Institutions of Europe and the World supported the project. While in 2011, the European Parliament adopted the resolution that recognizes the Sarajevo Winter and supports the initiative for Sarajevo to be the Capital of Culture of Europe 2014.
Festival Sarajevo Winter together with the IPC was an organizer of pilot project of Council of Europe ‘Sarajevo, a first intercultural city of Council of Europe’ and a world conference on topic ‘intercultural and interreligious dialogue’, 21.12.2013. in Sarajevo. IPC and Sarajevo Winter founded the House of Europe Sarajevo and they chaired European Cultural Forum in Brussels. They, together with other World Festivals founded the Network Art Festival called Silk Road in Shangai, 2017. Organizer of International Festival “Sarajevo Winter” is International Peace Centre. IPC is a member of International Societies for Performing Arts (ISPA), the European Festival Association (EFA), and association of the Biennial of Young Artists of Europe and Mediterranean(BJCEM), Peace Network B&H and ALF. International Festival “Sarajevo Winter” is a winner of many international recognitions and is a winner of the most important award of Sarajevo “Šestoaprilska nagrada Sarajevo”.
The festival is held under sponsorship of General Secretary of Council of Europe, General Director of UNESCO, Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Council of Ministers of B&H, Canton Sarajevo, and City of Sarajevo.
Ibrahim Spahić Director of International Sarajevo Festival