Akmal Nuridinov, President of Academy of Arts of Uzbekistan

The Nawruz Festival of KMU was held for a week from Monday, March 23. At this event, KMU invited the President of the Academy of Arts of Uzbekistan and conferred him with an honorary doctorate in Fine Arts, commemorating the 30th anniversary of the establishment of Korea-Uzbekistan diplomatic ties. The transcription of the interview with President Nuridinov is below:

How do you feel about receiving the honorary doctorate?
: I think it is a great honor and duty. It has been two years since I was asked to be an honorary doctor, but the Covid-19 delayed it for some time until now. I have respect for the Korean education system. I believe KMU provides excellent  education because the Uzbek students who studied in KMU proved that they are well-educated when they return home. It made me feel obliged to send more great students to KMU.

As the Nawruz Festival delivers the message of harmony and communication, what is your message of harmony and communication that you want to share?
: Primarily, ‘don’t lose hope.’ What you should remember is that the pandemic is a temporary condition. We are following every guideline and rule and trying our best to overcome the pandemic. Also, it is difficult to read the true facial expressions of others with masks on. It makes it difficult for us to express our inner selves. However, I would like to say that everything will be alright in the end. The most important thing is that we should all stay healthy.

What is the reason behind sponsoring young artists?
: It is hard and challenging to be an artist. I experienced many difficulties for a long while as well. Thus, I want the young artists to become greater artists than me in a faster, easier way without such difficulties. People can do anything when they find their true selves, but it is very difficult to do so. I believe that, if they could do so, the young artists would become unique, original, and talented.

What do you think about the mutual development through the intercourse between KMU and the Academy of Arts of Uzbekistan?
: I think it is difficult to go beyond a certain level of development if we only try to develop in Uzbekistan. We continue collaborating and exchanging with South Korea because the Koreans are future-oriented and diligent, and because of these characteristics, they can develop greatly. I also believe that we have similar mindsets in Uzbekistan. Whenever I come to Korea, I compare and contrast Korea’s accomplishments and weaknesses with those of Uzbekistan. I try to learn from Korea’s accomplishments and to reduce our weaknesses. By doing this, going beyond borders and studying strengths and weaknesses in relations with all other states, my country can achieve greater development.

What is your message for younger generations?
: Philosopher Alisher Navoiy once said, “Whenever, wherever you are, keep yourself in the state of falling in love.” Currently, we have stopped loving. Stopped saying words of love. People are eviler, wanting even more. Nothing is eternal. We are holding onto too many things, wealth, possibilities, opportunities. And while we are holding onto these, we ignore the pain that the people around us feel. Whereas we are losing humanity, our ancestors of Korea and Uzbekistan were not like that. We shouldn’t discard all our conventions, but we should take good out of them. Then, build something modern based on those traditions. I would like to say to younger generations that the four years of your life in university will pass very quickly, even though you feel as if it will last forever. You should plan your future as much as you enjoy your life.