This festive May
<img class="imgl" alt="" src="http://www.belarus-magazine.by/belen/data/upimages/2009/0001-009-388.jpg">[b]The bright spring month, embodying the awakening of nature, has lots of holidays, like no other month of the year. Everything begins with May 1st — the day of working solidarity. There are also many professional holidays — the Day of Printing, the Day of Radio, Television and Communication Workers, the Border Guards Day. However, the major holiday of May is, of course, Victory Day — the holiday which has been celebrated since May 1945 — when we were victorious in the struggle against fascism. [/b]
This holiday is honoured more than other. Naturally, there are veterans of that cruel war, as well as their descendants, who are thankful for their freedom and life. During the Great Patriotic War, each third resident of Belarus died — this is the price of independence.
Meanwhile, after World War II, Belarus became one of the founders of the United Nations Organisation — not each state is given such a right. Such a choice (in favour of Belarus — at that time one of the republics of the Soviet Union) was made for its great contribution in the defeat of fascism. Yes, there are events which can’t be depreciated by time. Undoubtedly, Victory Day belongs to them. Whatever happens in the contemporary world, the importance of this date isn’t subject to any devaluation. Usually many films about the war are broadcast on television on these May days, with the most successful of these enabling us to feel the tragedies and heroic deeds of that severe time.
These films, stories, books and meetings with veterans are the necessary connection with our heroic and tragic past. Actually, have many of contemporary teenagers met live veterans — the heroes of that war? Of course not. However, we can bring many examples when very young people conduct searches of the soldiers who died during the war and restored the names of the missing. They remember the war and are proud of its winners.
This year, the most revered holiday coincided with the start of the Ice Hockey World Championship, held in Minsk. Many guests have arrived and seen at first hand how Belarus honours its veterans and welcomes its friends.
Moreover, this year is jubilee for Belarus’ membership of UNESCO. On May 12th, 2014, our country celebrated the 60th anniversary of its participation in the United Nations Organisation for Education, Science and Culture. A vast programme of events has been developed to mark this significant event, which will be conducted throughout the year, including by the National Commission for UNESCO. An official visit to Minsk by UNESCO General Director, Irina Bokova, was also timed to coincide with the jubilee date. [/b][/i]‘60 Years with UNESCO’[/b][/i] is the topic of this issue.
[b][i]Diplomat, Scientist, Orientalist…[/b][/i] This article is dedicated to the whole world’s celebration of the 200th anniversary of the birth of our fellow countryman. UNESCO General Conference added the jubilee of Iosif Goshkevich to its 2014-2015 Calendar of Memorable Dates. That this unique person united Belarus and Japan can be seen by visiting an exhibition, entitled Iosif Goshkevich — A Diplomat and Oriental Scientist, hosted by the National Historical Museum.
Recently, the famous Belarusian painter, Viktor Alshevsky received a letter from the Spanish King’s chancellery expressing gratitude for his picture — Mystery of Old Gates. This was presented to the Spanish King by the Belarusian Ambassador to France, Spain, Portugal, Permanent Representative of Belarus to UNESCO, Pavel Latushko, at the presentation of credentials ceremony. The artistic peculiarities of the work were highly appreciated, as well as its figurativeness and the author’s ability to reveal the historical past. Such a response adds creative powers and confirms the decision of the occupation to which one has devoted their whole life. It’s important to ‘hit the nail on the head’ while choosing the topic which should be close to you, while engaging the viewer. The State Award laureate, Viktor Alshevsky, manages to do this perfectly. Four years ago, he was inspired by the forthcoming Ice Hockey World Championship in Minsk and created two impressive (2x3m each) picturesque works dedicated to sport and the power of the human spirit.
Of course, one needs to see these pictures and the impressions are very strong. Meanwhile, it’s impossible to do without the author’s explanations, since Viktor Alshevsky is more than simply a painter. He is a painter-philosopher, and this largely explains his creative thinking. Therefore, the works requested author’s comments which are presented in our publication — [b][i]Viktor Alshevsky’s Philosophy of Impressions.[/b][/i]
By Viktor [b]Kharkov[/b]