2011 The Year of Mexico in France

“2011, Année du Mexique, ce pays que vous pensiez connaître”.

“2011, Year of  Mexico: the country you thought you knew “.

The Year of Mexico in France is part of a long tradition of cultural exchanges held by France. After Russia in 2010, France will honor Mexico for this new edition in 2011.

In 2008, Felipe Calderón Hinojosa and Nicolas Sarkozy, the presidents of Mexico and France, agreed to establish a Bilateral Group of High Level Employers, consisting of recognized business people in Mexico and France willing to contribute actively in promoting investment, tourism and increase economic flows between both countries.

As a result of work carried out, in March 2009 during a presidential visit, Nicolas Sarkozy announced that 2011 would be the year of Mexico in France and he took the opportunity to announce that several events were already being organized; at that time, the exhibition “Teotihuacan, Cité des Dieux” – “Teotihuacan, City of Gods” in the Museum of the Quai Branly (in Paris) had just ended.

The exhibition was so successful that the museum was forced to open its doors at night! Indeed, the last two weekends, the Parisians audience was able to appreciate until midnight this unique and wonderful exhibition of 450 items most of which, had never been exhibited in Europe before and some of which were unknown in Mexico since their exhibitions in Monterrey (September 2008 to January 2009).

The Year of Mexico in France is a great event and the outcome of bilateral diplomatic commitments and decisions made at the highest level by the Heads of State. Its implementation, carried out by the French Institute “Culturesfrance” under the supervision of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs and the Ministry of Culture and Communication, is based on strong partnerships with businesses and institutions as well as with local authorities and companies.

This is the first time a Spanish-speaking country is a special guest of the French government for a year.

260 events or so will be planned to promote Mexican Art and Culture all over France:

From early February until late December 2011, the French audience will discover the richness of the artistic, cultural, educational, technological, gastronomic, touristic and scientific heritage of Mexico.

Those events will take place in the important cities of france such as Paris, Bordeaux, Marseille, Toulouse, Lyon, Rennes, Arles, Le Mans, Metz, Brest, Nantes and Lille, among others.

Some of the events:

Mexico will be the guest of honor at numerous art and cultural events like the Festival of Photography in Arles, Le Bourget Air Show, the Cannes Film Festival, and the Book Fair.

Events in Paris: “Les Masques de Jade Mayas” – The first exhibition of an exceptional collection of Pakal’s and other Mayan governors Jade Death Masks. From March 1st to August 7th at the Pinacothèque de Paris,

– Paris: “Nuit Electro au Grand Palais” – Electro Night at The Grand Palais,

– The Trajineras of Xochimilco; the colorful Xochimilco boats will sail on the Seine River, 
 – Xoxhimilco Craft Show.

Events in Bordeaux: Diego Rivera’s Cubist Portraits at the Galerie des Beaux Arts (Fine Arts Gallery). from March 10th to June 5th),

Events in Lyon: Mexico will be the guest of honor at the Literary Festival: “Quai du Polar Festival” (in April),

Giant Alebrijes Parades in several french cities,

The Papantla Flyers, 
a very impressive ceremony/ritual which consists of dance and the climbing of a 30 meter pole from which four of the five participants then launch themselves tied with ropes to descend to the ground.