OUR WORLD IN THE YEAR 2000 12 July-28 August


The United Nations Millennium Art Exhibition in aid of UNICEF - "Our World in the Year 2000" is the result of a competition that drew 22,500 entrants from 51 countries.
(The competition has been recorded by the Guinness Book of Records as the largest international painting competition in the world.)

The paintings, which express concerns about the environment, impressions of the world and how war and technology affect people, are by young and old, amateur and professional artists.

The aims of the competition were threefold: to promote the art and craft of painting as a cross-cultural activity giving people a means to express their ideas, thoughts and feelings; to reveal the extraordinary diversity of artistic expression around the world; and to look at the world through the eyes of its artists, both professional and amateur.

Artists worked in a variety of styles and media - including oil, acrylic, watercolour and mixed media - to depict their impressions of their countries. Popular subjects included concern for the environment, for the wellbeing of children, and for peace and reconciliation in countries in conflict.

A glossy, museum quality, catalogue has been produced with forewards by the Secretary-General, who is the Patron of the UN Millennium Art Exhibition, HRH The Prince of Wales, the World-wide Patron and the Executive Director of UNICEF. Proceeds from the sale of the catalogue and a painting by the winner of the competition will benefit UNICEF.

On 30 May 2000 the United Nations Postal Administration will issue 6 stamps (2 in New York, 2 in Geneva and 2 in Vienna) using 6 of the winning paintings.



The Exhibit's Official site
UN Home page
UN Millennium Assembly
Conferences and Events
Calendar of Events
Calendar of Exhibits

1st Prize
Ramón Piaguaje
was born in 1962 in the Cuyabeno National Park in the Amazon rainforest, Ecuador.
He is a Secoya Indian who lives close to the Aguarico River. He comments: ‘I entered the competition because I wanted to deliver a message to the rest of the world about the importance of keeping this “lung of the world” free from pollution and destruction. I paint what I see and where I live. It is a beautiful, positive, and peaceful way of showing my world. The forest is all we have. I hope that when people see my picture, they do not just look at my art, but realise that it is their obligation to help to preserve the Amazon rainforest. My tribe, the Secoyas, have lived in these forests for thousands of years and to see a tree fall is like seeing a loved one die. We need the world to help us to protect the rainforest’.
Mr. Piaguaje is a self-taught artist and has only been painting for five years.

Mr. Piaguaje and his masterpiece

2nd Prize
Stanislaw Zoladz
was born in 1952 and lives in Stockholm.
The artist comments: ‘I wanted to show a little piece of untouched Swedish nature, which to me symbolises a positive and successful development of society. It is a great mission Sweden has accomplished that it can hand over a country with a high standard of living and a fantastic untouched nature to coming generations’.
In the Drizzle

3rd Prize
Rezvan Sadeghzadeh
was born in 1963, lives in Tehran, and studied at the Art University, Tehran.
The painting shows a group of nine women by a stream in a landscape, their faces hidden by head scarves, each wearing an elegant and beautifully patterned garment. The artist explains that the picture is a comment on the condition of Iranian women as well as an artistic experiment with a multi-figure composition where conventional space and volume are not registered.



To see more artworks

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