Skip to main content

Who we are and what we do

General Assembly of IAA Europe took place in Helsinki, Finland 2022. Photo by Sara Rantanen.

IAA Europe

The International Association of Art (IAA) Europe is a network of about 40 national member organisations within Europe, representing professional visual artists.

Main objectives of IAA Europe are the exchange between artists and organisations engaged in the fields of art and culture in Europe and beyond, the discussion and elaboration of artistic matters within Europe as well as the promotion of the flow of information regarding e.g. working conditions, social security systems, authors’ rights and free flow of artworks. It aims to make artists’ interests known to European political institutions and their representatives.

The IAA Europe was founded in 2002 in Heidelberg, Germany, as a unification of IAA Europe West and IAA Europe East.

IAA Europe is one of the five cultural regions of the International Association of Art (IAA), the largest international non-governmental association of visual artists, with more than 100 member organizations worldwide. The Association recognises five cultural regions: Europe and North America, Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia and the Pacific, Africa, and the Arab States.

International Association of Art, IAA

The International Association of Art, IAA/AIAP is the largest international non-governmental association of visual artists, with more than 100 member organisations worldwide. The IAA supports international cooperation and artistic exchange, free from any aesthetic, political or other bias and aims to improve the economic and social position of artists on national and international level.

The IAA/AIAP is a non-governmental organisation working in official partnership with UNESCO, having a consultative status. It comprises artists working in the fields painting, sculpture, printmaking, and other forms of creative work in the visual arts. It is also engaged with other organisations concerned with the arts and culture. 

The IAA/AIAP issues the identity card for professional artists, which grants concessions or free entry to many museums worldwide. The IAA/AIAP issues the certificate for the customs authorities, which refers a.o. to the UNESCO’s ‘FlorenceAgreement’. This agreement allows artists in principle to import their works into any signatory states without restriction.

The objectives of the association are to stimulate international cooperation among artists of all countries, nations or peoples, and to improve the economic and social position of artists on national and international levels, as well as to defend their material and moral rights.

IAA/AIAP’s structure is comparable to the UNESCO. It facilitates working conditions of professional artists and allows for comparison through meetings, seminars, and exhibitions. IAA/AIAP discusses and prepares proposals that are transferred to the member states. In 2012, an international enquiry on the living and working conditions of the artists today was launched which will allow to actualise the ‘World Observatory on the Condition of the Artist’.

The IAA/AIAP actively participates in the UNESCO programs through arts education for children facing violence, underprivileged populations or living far from educational centers, in schools and community homes without arts education, as well as in specialised medical centers. IAA/AIAP is campaigning to have arts education recognised as one of the Human Rights, and introduced to the National Constitutions.

World president of IAA/AIAP is currently Kwang Soo Lee of the Korean National Committee.

World Art Day

During the General Assembly held in Guadalajara, Mexico, in April 2010, IAA/AIAP launched the ‘World Art Day’, which is celebrated 15th of April every year. The ‘World Art Day’ was proposed to underline the artists and the artistic creation’s major role in the evolution of the societies, visual arts being considered as one of the deepest expressions of humanity.