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Cultural diplomacy

Cultural relations with Israel are intense thanks to an integrated cultural promotion action that pays particular attention to the Mediterranean and especially to Israel not only for its regional role, but also for the demand and consumption of cultural content by the Israeli public.

Bilateral cultural cooperation is based on a 1971 Cultural Cooperation Agreement and on three-year implementation programs under which the Italian Cultural Institutes of Tel Aviv and Haifa carry out initiatives to promote the products of our cultural industries. The results in the field of publishing, cinema, design, art and music are particularly positive.

Italian literature is highly appreciated thanks to the numerous translations into Hebrew of Italian works – both past and contemporary – made possible also thanks to public contributions.

Italian cinema always registers considerable success with the public during the most important events in the sector: the Haifa International Festival and the Jerusalem Film Festival. Every year on the occasion of the Italian Film Festival, screenings of Italian auteur films are organized in the main Israeli cinemateques in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Herzilya. In 2018, a bilateral agreement to promote film co-productions entered into force.

The admiration for Italian style and taste contributes to the success of the initiatives organized in the design and art sector. Exhibitions and conferences are held throughout the year and in particular close to annual events such as the Italian Design Day and the Contemporary Day.

In the music sector, there is a traditional collaboration with the main Israeli concert halls and with the various music festivals that make it possible to organize concerts and performances by Italian artists and musical groups in the field of classical, jazz, ethnic, popular and contemporary music.

Finally, three archaeological missions are active in Israel that benefit from public grants involving Italian researchers from Sapienza University of Rome, the Second University of Naples and the University of Florence.