Did you actually produce any paintings during election year or did the strain take its toll on your artistic output?
I produced absolutely nothing throughout the period of the UNESCO elections... There was simply no time for artistic expression. As a matter of fact, since my last exhibition in January I practically stopped painting... except for one or two works at the most since I was completely immersed in work commitments, various studies, traveling, and meetings as well as seeking a new approach that would better serve the Organization's interests. All this, of course, was in addition to my ministerial duties.
So, have you now gone back to your artistic pursuits? And is your annual Exhibition set for early 2010 as usual?
Yes, I'm back to art with a vengeance. In fact my exhibition is held according to schedule. The works exhibited are totally new in concept, as well.
So, has this been your longest 'art-free' period?
No, the longest one lasted two years, which was when I was appointed Minister of Culture.