Local Artists Rock Camp Lemonier
The Djiboutian Institute of Arts and service members deployed to Camp Lemonnier with Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa teamed up to host an art exhibition on October 20, 2008.
The local art institute shared their culture with American forces through paintings and music.
Hansna Maki, director of Djiboutian Institute of Arts, explained, "As instructors, it's our job to promote our artists and help them to interact with the outside world. Camp Lemonnier is like a city within our city and it is our role as artists to share our culture with you."
Maki presented the camp commander, Rear Admiral Phillip Greene, with a painting during the kickoff of the evening's event. The painting depicted two women who Maki explained represented the circle of community in Djibouti.
"The women represent the two predominant communities and the roll of women in society. Women really are the motor of the family, community and city," she said. "The women depict the future of Djibouti by representing both communities coexisting, side-by-side in peace. This is a very strong symbol for us and something we wanted to share with everyone else."
After receiving the painting, Greene also presented Maki with a gift and then spoke to the crowd of about 100 Americans and Djiboutians.
"This is an awfully special thing," he said of the evening's events. "Our mission here is to help others help themselves. I am grateful to share this evening together with our partner nations. That's what makes us strong. That's what makes us special."
The crowd was entertained by the Djiboutian musicians who played six African songs, followed by the camp's local band, American Musical Outreach. After they performed six classic rock and blues songs the two bands performed together.
"Thank you to everyone who helped make this event possible. It is very important as artists to be able to share culture and encourage cultural dialogue among different people this is going to help enrich our lives," Maki said.