The “Past-Present-Future of SDC” photo exhibition successfully presented through Mongolia

Local news, 09.11.2023

The “Past-Present-Future of SDC in Mongolia” is a photo competition aimed at involving young artists to promote development work done through the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Mongolia through photography. 

The “Past-Present-Future of SDC” photo exhibition
The “Past-Present-Future of SDC” photo exhibition ©SDC

It is a joint initiative of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, the Ministry of Culture, the Gamma Photo Agency and the Batzorig Foundation.

Switzerland and Mongolia enjoy friendly diplomatic relations that date back to 1964. Both our countries share common democratic values, and political exchanges. We, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) has been active in Mongolia since 2001 and strengthened its presence by opening an office in Ulaanbaatar in 2004.

The amazing images clearly show the commitment, effort and willingness of the young artists, to contribute to Mongolia’s future. They also highlight the freedom of expression, peacebuilding and sustainable development of Mongolia through the photos. Around 100 artists and more youth participated in the competition. In addition to the images by participants, we have taken the liberty to add some photos depicting SDC’s results achieved in Mongolia during the last 20 years of operations. 

However, Switzerland and Mongolia are promoting the youth in their respective strategies and therefore SDC decided to involve only young emerging artists and photographers up to the age of 34 years. It is very crucial, to give voice and secure space for young people to express distinctive ways of thinking and to share new solutions to challenges we are confronted with daily. Listening to younger generations is our duty. We have to make our utmost efforts to understand which messages they would like to share with us.

“I would like to express my deepest gratitude to SDC for invaluable support and commitment for Mongolian Culture and Arts. Because the goal to emphasize tourism and culture sectors as a leading sector for development and economic growth at the core of the plan of 2023-2024 since Mongolian Government designated the year 2023 as the “Year to Visit Mongolia”. Mongolia’s economy has fared well after the COVID-19 pandemic and it is likely to show continued resilience in growth in 2023. The benefits of the government’s New Recovery Policy and Vision 2050, designed to support Mongolia and catalyze the recovery. The concept of this exhibition contains the fine and selected photos of young photographers those successfully participated to the photo competition, which showcases the freedom of expression, peacebuilding and sustainable development of Mongolia through the photography”, said Nomin Chinbat, Minister of Culture.  

Taichar Enkhbat is the winner of this competition and a young photographer. He won the first-place to visit to Switzerland. “I even didn’t realize that I won the first-place in this photo competition. When I travelled to Switzerland in October, only then I really believed that I became a winner. It was the first time I travelled outside the country and I was very excited. Switzerland as we know it boasts with beautiful nature, chocolate, cheese and agriculture. There are so many things to visit and to see. I had to select and finally decided to learn more about the urban life. That is why I visited several cities. I visited Basel-Bern-Zürich-Lausanne and Geneva and had a chance to get a glimpse from some museums and nature, culture and art of those cities. Seeing the works of Swiss artists respected in the world, I was so excited and I feel very grateful to the people of Switzerland for providing me this wonderful opportunity”, highlighted Taichar.

The photo exhibition was presented to the public on several occasions and places, starting from Chinggis Khan Museum, during the Swiss National day, August 1st 2023, followed by a weeklong presentation of the photos at the main Sukhbaatar square. Afterwards, the exhibition participated in the Photo Week exhibition in Ulaanbaatar organized the Ministry of Culture, and, finally, travelled to three aimags: Khovd, Khentii and Dornogobi. It was really great to see, that in particular in the aimags, entire school and kindergarten classes visited the exhibition.