Media Conference and launch of the commemorative stamp to mark the 25th Anniversary of Kala Pola

Media Conference of Kala Pola 2018 was held on the 7th of February 2018 at Cinnamon Lakeside, Colombo. A commemorative stamp and first day cover to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Kala Pola was launched by the Deputy Chairman of John Keells Group along with representatives from John Keells Foundation and the George Keyt Foundation.

Since this year marks the 25th Anniversary of Kala Pola, instead of statements from the head table, the stamp launch was followed by a panel discussion that comprised of 4 panelists. Representing John Keells Foundation Nadija Tambiah, Head of CSR of John Keells Group, representing the George Keyt Foundation Mike Anthonisz, Chairman of the George Keyt Foundation, Sanjeewee Senevirathna and Zamshaya Kaleel represented the Kala Pola artists. The moderator of the panel discussion was Arun Dias Bandaranaike.

The panel discussion was an interactive and insightful session that discussed the role of The George Keyt Foundation in the conceptualization and evolution of Kala Pola as a platform for SL art as well as the role of John Keells Group in supporting, funding and organizing Kala Pola as part of its CSR Vision. Furthermore, Sanjeewee and Zamshaya also shared their success stories of how Kala Pola has parallelly raised the living standards of their lives as we as many other artists. They also shared their experiences on the other benefits of Kala Pola such as the exposure to various styles and techniques, networking with artists and build-up of clientele etc in addition to the monetary benefits. The panelist also shared insights on the level of international exposure Sri Lankan artists have got after 25 years of Kala Pola and the expansion of the ‘Art Market’  in Sri Lanka over the last 25 years .The panel discussion concluded with requesting media to create more awareness and extend the same level of exposure to visual arts similar to the prominence given to performing arts.

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