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Competition kicks off at 'culture Olympics' on S. Korean island

All Headlines 11:14 September 10, 2009

By Shin Hae-in

JEJU ISLAND, South Korea, Sept. 10 (Yonhap) -- Leaving behind the festivities of the previous night, performers and artists from all over the world braced for competition Thursday as the third International Delphic Games got underway on this South Korean island.

Three events in the crafts, design and visual arts category opened outside the Jeju Museum of Art in the early morning, with artists creating works under the theme "Nature and Human" as judges observed them.

In the sculpture category, an individual competition, emerging artists including South Korea's Lee Hwan-kyu, Chang Soo-jin and Kim Jin-kyung will be competing against India's Ashok Kumar Mahapatra, Ernesto Dul-ang from the Philippines and Christa Ingeborg Heppner from Germany among others.

The graphic storytelling category, also an individual competition with the prize going to one who best communicates with the audience through graphics, illustrations, caricatures and other tools of the visual arts, was joined by An So-hyun and Yang Heui-cheon from Korea, Kherlenchimeg Uuganbayar from Mongolia, and Katrine Storebo from Norway.

The documentary production section drew a large crowd as participants began work on videos titled "Jeju Island."

The three events will run through Saturday.

Two competitions in the architecture and ecological arts sector also opened at Jeju National University on Thursday, with artists from seven countries competing to create the most environmentally-friendly architecture.

The mask dance competition was to open in the afternoon, a group competition drawing dozens of competitors from Japan, India, Mongolia, South Africa and Israel as well as South Korea. Mask dance being one of Korea's best-known traditional performance art, the event drew the largest number of competitors from the host country.

Non-competition performances were lined up for the evening, including the maestro performance "Song of Tamra" by South Korean mono-drama master Shim Woo-sung and "Poetry and Music Night" led by French poet and scholar Claude Mouchard.

The third Delphic Games opened on Jeju Island on Wednesday, with performers from 54 countries taking part in games in six artistic categories.

The Delphic Games originated out of the ancient Greek culture festivals that were held every four years at the sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi. With representatives of 18 nations founding the International Delphic Council in 1994, the first round of the culture Olympics were held in Russia and the second in Malaysia in 2005. The event in South Korea is the largest so far.

The competition is open to anyone aged 19 and older, with winners receiving the gold, silver or bronze Delphic Medal Award, the Delphic Laurel Award, the Delphic Peace Award and the Delphic Lyre Award.


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