On October 24 in the building of governmental seats of the Museum-reserve “Kazan Kremlin” the results of the All-Russian plein air, held in the ancient city of Bolgar on August 12 of the current year, were summed up.

All in all more than 100 works were presented at the exhibition “From the East to Light”. They depict preserved and renovated monuments of Bolgar antiquity, plots, connected with acceptance of Islam, with history of Bolgar civilization.

The organizers of the plein air and exhibition were the Spiritual Assembly of Muslims of Russia, the Russian Academy of Arts, the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Tatarstan, the State Museum-Preserve “Kazan Kremlin” and the Institute of Philology and Intercultural Communication of Kazan Federal University. The participants were artists, sculptors and masters of art crafts.

The State Advisor of the Republic of Tatarstan, the first President of the Republic of Tatarstan Mintimer Shaimiev addressing the participants of the Plein-air underlined the particular importance of celebrating the 1100-anniversary of a voluntary acceptance of Islam by the Volga Bulgaria, noting that the decision was a wise and right step of the head of a multinational and multi-confessional country Vladimir Putin.   

In his speech, Mintimer Sharipovich also praised the work of the Bolgar Islamic Academy in preserving and popularizing the national theological heritage:

“It is gratifying that today the Academy works and develops, graduating highly educated and trained religious figures, which we could not even dream of before.”

The opening ceremony was also attended by the head of the Spiritual Assembly of Muslims of Russia, Mufti of Moscow, member of the Public Chamber of the Russian Federation Albir Hazrat Krganov. In his speech, he noted the high role of the leadership of Tatarstan in the revival of the ancient Bolgar and in preserving the country’s rich Muslim heritage.

“The 260 paintings of the project depict Bulgarian architecture, nature, everyday life, and places significant to our history. Islam and its culture have been an integral part of Russia since the first days of its creation. The contribution of Islam and Muslims to the history of Russia is priceless. The Islamic world is well aware of its respectful attitude toward Muslims, and today it is committed to a constructive dialogue with the country. The role of Tatarstan and its President Rustam N. Minnikhanov as the leader of the Strategic Vision Group “Russia – the Islamic World” in popularizing Islamic values and making them known in the world deserves high recognition”, stressed Albir Hazrat Krganov.

It is also worth mentioning that Rinat Nuriyev, the Head of the Public Relations and Mass Media Department of the Academy, was awarded a letter of appreciation by Albir Hazrat Krganov for his assistance in organizing the Plein-air as well as for his contribution to educating and popularizing traditional spiritual and moral values, history and culture of Islam in Russia.