Matthias Leridon, African Artist for Development’s co-president, amongst the writers of the publication rewarded by the Francophonie-Turgot prize

Wednesday 05 March 2014

The price of the Francophonie Turgot 2014 was attributed to the third volume of the book ‘ Crisis Prevention and Peace building ’ published in 2013 by Bruylant editions and directed by Jean-Pierre Vettoraglia.

Among the prestigious co-writers of this volume devoted to the ‘Determinants of conflicts and new forms of prevention’, Matthias Leridon, president of Tilder and co-president of the AAD-fun, features.


The prize will be awarded to the authors on March 20 by Bernard Cazeneuve, Delegate Minister to the Minister of Economy and Finance for the budget. Abdou Diouf, Secretary general of the International Organization of Francophonie, underlines in the book’s forewords that ‘ only a full understanding of determinants will help prevent the recurrence of crises and conflicts’. A growing number of conflicts are based on the non-acceptance of cultural and religious difference; and in this context, culture is not only a determinant of conflicts, it can also become a conflict resolution and mediation tool.


It is this conflict mediation power of contemporary artistic creations that Matthias Leridon, co-president of AAD highlights in the chapter ‘ Artists, emissaries of peace’. Based on the experience of several AAD programs, Matthias Leridon shows it is possible to bring conflict-affected populations to the field of art, to enable them to overcome suffering and tensions, and to regain the value of the individual as the sense of the universal.


The ‘Refugees on the Move’ program is a great example. It involves African contemporary choreographers in the UNHCR refugee camps in Chad, Central African Republic, Burundi, Burkina Faso and Tanzania. As highlighted by the AAD co-president, this project is a ‘great experimental laboratory of the virtuous circle created by the introduction of an artistic practice to individuals directly affected by war’.


African Artists for Development is not only involved with refugees: the Fund uses the vehicle of culture and contemporary art in all its projects that meet the Millennium Development Goals. These actions reached in 2013 more than one million African. This unique approach has convinced the Clinton Global Initiative, but also the United Nations, which granted AAD consultative status with the Economic and Social Council.