In 2019, the second edition of Segou’Art, a contemporary art event taking place in Mali, was combined with the country’s popular Festival on the Niger, launched in 2005 by cultural entrepreneur Mamou Daffé. The combined festival, held February 1–9, included concerts, workshops, conferences, exhibitions, and performances, uniting people and art forms and working beyond barriers. For two full weekends the event hosted numerous concerts by renowned stars such as Vieux Farka Touré, Sékouba Bambino, Abdoulaye Diabaté, Amadou and Mariam, Fousco and Djènèba, Master Soumy, Tab B., Calibre 27, King KJ, and Kader Tarhanine. The art program was composed of an In at the Foundation and nineteen Offs held throughout the city, showcasing, among others, the work of Abdoulaye Konaté, Barthélémy Toguo, Cheick Diallo, Philippe Dodard, Siriki Ky, and Amehiguéré Dolo, as well as sixteen young artists who were selected from the continent and given the opportunity to attend workshops by leading artists. Galleries and collectives were present as well. This article discusses this amazing event that, through musical and artistic works, promotes peace and stability in a country that has been facing intense political difficulties, fully illustrating this year’s theme of Ségou Yelen (Light). The project demonstrates that culture is the best way to bring about hope, unite people beyond their differences, dissuade youth from migrating, elevate the public’s spirit, and promote the Malian concept of Maaya—a lifestyle, an attitude, and a way of being based on humanism, civility, and respect of others.

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