To honour the Woman’s Day 2003, Mrs. Marianna V. Vardinoyannis, undertook the initiative to present the exhibition “Breaking the Veils”, which is made up of women painters’ works from the Islamic world at UNESCO’s headquarters, in Paris.

The exhibition was held under the auspices and with the presence of H.M. Queen Rania of Jordan.

It dedicated to the Woman- fighter, Woman-mother, Woman-creator, who stands up against violence and intolerance and struggles against ignorance and prejudices in every part of the world. The exhibition refered to works and days of women creators who belong in different doctrines- Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism – and live in one of the 21 Islamic countries. Through their works, they try, just like their predecessors, to enrich their civilizations, to touch only human souls and to raise the spirit of the spectators conveying them purely artistic values.

The exhibition opened on the 8th of March 2003 and was inaugurated with a great success. Indeed, there were numerous distinguished guests while the photographers and the TV cameras literally invaded the exhibition hall (some of the 27 news agencies, television channels, newspapers and magazines that were represented were the following: L’ Express, RTL TV1, Star Channel, Rai TV, Sipa Press, Agence Saola, AP Photo, Le Figaro Magazine, Point de Vue, La Tribune, etc).

The guests were welcomed and shown around by UNESCO Director-General, Mr. Koichiro Matsuura and Mrs. Marianna V. Vardinoyannis.

Among the guests there were also: the UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, H.H. Grand Duchess Maria-Teresa of Luxembourg, the President of the Royal Society of Fine Arts of Jordan, H.R.H. Princess Wijdan Ali, H.M. Begum Inaara Agha Khan, the Director of Royal Society of Fine Arts of Jordan, Dr. Khalid Khreis, the UNESCO Goodwill Ambassadors, Mr. Jean-Michel Jarre and Mr. Pierre Berge, Jordan’s Ambassador in France, Mrs. Dina Kawar, the President of the FAM network, Mrs. Alice Moschi-Gauget, personalities from the field of Letters and Art and other distinguished members of the Parisian society.

At the official presentation of the exhibition that took place in UNESCO’s Conference Center, the speakers were: H.R.H. Princess Wijdan Ali, UNESCO Director of Strategic Planning, Mr. Hans d’ Orville, Mrs. Marianna V. Vardinoyannis and Mrs. Alice Moschi-Gauget. A discussion followed among the women artists and representatives of the women’s organizations and NGOs.

It is worth noting that the exhibition entitled “Breaking the Veils” was presented for the first time in the island of Rhodes (Greece), in September 2002, and was organized by the Royal Society of Fine Arts of Jordan and the Pan Mediterranean Network of Women Creators named FAM (Woman – Art- Mediterranean). The exhibition was also presented in January 2003, in Athens. After Paris, where it remained until the 14th of March, the exhibition will travel in many other European, American and Asian cities.