Chile to attend South America’s first cultural industry exchange

Andean nation receives invitation to join the continent’s first ever cultural trade fair, designed to boost business relations between Latin America’s creative industries.

Carmen Eva is just one of the talented Chilean designers participating in MICSUR 2014. Photo by textilería contemporánea/ Facebook
Carmen Eva is just one of the talented Chilean designers participating in MICSUR 2014. Photo by textilería contemporánea/ Facebook

In an attempt to encourage international networking within the creative sector, Chile will be attending The Cultural Industries Fair of the South (MICSUR)  — the first opportunity of its kind in South America to ignite economic potential between the continent’s cultural industries.

This unique experience, comprised of business meetings and other activities,will be held at The Hotel Providencia in Mar del Plata, Argentina, from May 15 – 18. The event has been specifically designed with creators, fashion designers, producers, curators, programmers, managers and buyers of cultural services and products from 10 South American countries in mind.

ProChile, a major player in the organization of MICSUR, sees the fair as an effective vehicle for the promotion of Chile’s creative products and services at an international level. For the event, the country is sending a delegation of guests and international traders a variety of creative sectors, including music, audiovisual, literature, scenic arts, design and video games.

The National Center for Conservation and Restoration took on the role of channeling the registration of creative Chilean service providers and artists throughout the enrolment period. Chile’s successful participants will benefit from a series of business seminars dedicated to the cultural industry, as well as face-to-face contact with South American counterparts and extra-regional service buyers.

“To participate in MICSUR means a lot to me. It’s an honor and a privilege that I have been selected,” said Chilean designer, Jorge Caballero, selected to represent Chile on the catwalk via the presentation of his latest collection. “I will have the chance to show my work in a space which unites creative people from all over South America. It’s the first of its kind and it offers the possibility to interact with those who work in different areas of the creative industry.”

MICSUR is the result of a joint initiative, between The National Council for Culture and the Arts, The Production Development Corporation (CORFO), Santiago Creativo — under the Direction of Cultural Affairs for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (DIRAC) and ProChile — and the Fundación Imagen de Chile.

Creative professionals, like Caballero, will exchange ideas, market products and promote services within an international context, set to include representatives from 10 countries — Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela. Moreover, no less than 800 South American dealers are set to attend.
To guarantee Chile the chance to reveal the range of creativity it has to offer, The National Council for Culture and the Arts has agreed to provide a number of transport grants to help artists and other professionals in the cultural sector finance some of their costs.

Claudia Betancourt and Nano Pulgar, founders of WALKA, a Chilean jewellery design company, have also been selected to represent Chile during the event. WALKA’s success, in part, relates to the direct support ProChile provided throughout the selection process. The business owners are excited about the possibilities MICSUR might bring.

“To encourage regional sectors of the various cultural industries across the continent to share, it’s important to construct commercial opportunities, to promote the nature of building a network, and to encourage the development of complementary relationships through the participation of fairs, festivals and international markets,” Betancourt and Pulgar explained.

The program includes 9,500 business seminar opportunities, 50 forums and conference talks, 30 live creative presentations, eight institutional meetings for Latin America’s cultural bodies, one fashion show for South American designers, and opportunities for intercontinental trade, as 80 of the enlisted traders will be arriving from Spain, Japan, Finland, UK, USA and China.

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