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20 / Oct / 2004

The Copan Award

The National Chamber of Commerce of Honduras will be hosting a Gala Presidential Fiesta as parts of its World Tourism Day celebration. At the Gala, Honduran President Ricardo Maduro and Tourism Minister Thierry de Pierrefeu will present this year’s winners of the Copan Award for Excellence in Tourism.
The event will be held in Tegucigalpa on October 1 at 8:00pm at the Chiminike Children’s Museum.

The Copan Award
The Copan Award is given annually by the Ministry of Tourism to local and foreign individuals and organizations that contribute to the sustainable development of the tourism sector in Honduras. Candidates are those whose contributions to the sector are innovative and serve as models for future development. Winners will emphasize the effective use, management and protection of the country-s tourism resources. A special award is also granted each year to the journalist who has most effectively advocated the development, growth and promotion of tourism activities and projects.

Honor in Bronze
The award itself is a bronze statue inspired ancient sculptures of Mayan kings that represented both their natural and supernatural powers. Known as excentricos, these statues can be found throughout the Mayan world, but the largest and most detailed examples are from Copan. They are unusual in the manner in which they combine art and technology.

Honduran sculptor Arnaldo Uguarte was commissioned to design the award. Currently a resident of New York, Uguarte is known for the pre/Hispanic flair of his work. The statuettes chosen for the awards measure 14 and 18.5 centimeters in height and weigh 1 pound and 13 ounces respectively.

The statues were founded at Polich Art Works in New York City. They are set in a base of grey marble from the Sula Valley of Honduras - another material common to pre-Hispanic artwork in the region.

Each award is a work of art in itself and bears the signature of the author and the seal of the Ministry of Tourism and the National Chamber of Tourism. They are individually numbered as well.


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