LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM – 8 January 2024 – Today’s launch of the MarcoPolo700 Foundation as a charitable organisation dedicated to fostering growth through cultural exchange, art and education marks the 700th anniversary of Marco Polo’s passing. The Foundation seeks to address a world facing complex challenges and geopolitical tensions, holding up high Marco Polo’s important legacy of promoting understanding, appreciation, and collaboration across different cultures.
The MarcoPolo700 Foundation is working towards building a transformative travelling exhibition that retraces Marco Polo’s journey from Italy to China. The exhibition will blend virtual technology with physical artefacts, bringing to life the cultural exchange and trade that Marco Polo facilitated between the East and the West.
A key component of the Foundation’s directive is the involvement of schools through visual arts competitions, and engaging students in the exploration of cultural diversity and historical connections.
Kevin Adeson, CEO of MarcoPolo700 Foundation, expresses the timely importance of the Foundation’s mission, stating that “the MarcoPolo700 Foundation unites people through the positive acknowledgement of our shared history and cultural diversity. By engaging with Marco Polo’s journey, we inspire and celebrate collaboration among all generations and geographies.”
UNESCO Partnership for Culture and Arts Education
The MarcoPolo700 Foundation plans to participate in the UNESCO World Conference on Culture and Arts Education in Abu Dhabi, from February 13-15, 2024. The Foundation’s proposal to UNESCO is to showcase its Digital Arts Competition, as part of a panel discussion on Marco Polo’s enduring power to inspire inclusion and diversity. The Foundation envisages a long-term partnership with UNESCO.
Dr Helen Chan, who has previously worked with UNESCO and is responsible for the Annual Digital Arts Competition, announced: “I am pleased to be working closely with UNESCO again for such an amazing international initiative and with such a diverse group of cultures.”
Yiline Zhao, Associate Programme Specialist, Cultural Policies and Development, Culture Sector, UNESCO, acknowledges the Foundation’s commitment to cultural exchange and endorses a long-term partnership with the MarcoPolo700 Foundation. She sees a particular alignment of values in the Foundation’s initiative to play a crucial role in fostering mutual understanding and appreciation of cultural heritage, transcending the tensions present in today’s world.