Saturday, May 19, 2007

Iranian Experience (5)

The Artist's Forum
(Khaneh Honarmandan)


The Artist's Forum (or--literally translated-- house or organization, call it what you wish) is a nice little corner in the center of Tehran. It's a soothing kind of a place. It is a meeting place of intellectuals, but it also attracts a lot of want-to-become artist students.

The more the number of "want-to-be" artists (and this is not a place for pop artists, mind you), the better. This shows that "high" art (not that I do believe in hierarchies of expression; but this is just to state that the works presented at this venue are often abstract and nonrepresentational) has an audience in Iran.



A few days before my departure, I heard a
close-to-star actor of the Iranian cinema had an exhibition of his woodworks:

The collection displayed Kianian's sculpturing talent on carved pieces of wood that he collected during his travels throughout Iran. I liked them. His collection did make one see a piece of shore-washed wood with a different eye: a totally randomly shaped stick would come to life with a minimal artist's twist, and would reward the senses with discovering a recognizable shape.



Reza Kianian was there himself; surrounded by young boys and girls, who listened on as a young girl interviewed him, perhaps for an assignment in her journalism 101. No bodyguards! No paparazzi. His work was not expensive, 300$ per piece on average; and most pieces already sold.

Speaking of Artist's house, the 4th Annual Theater Forum Festival was happening at the same time as Kianian's show. Unfortunately, I couldn't participate, but only got a wind of, as I went to the House for other business. Here are a few pictures of the closing celebrations. The women in the center in the left picture is Farzaneh Kaboli, a choreographer and dance artist, applauded by her performance group.

In spite of the (national and international) glory of the Iranian Cinema, theater in Iran is still a major and popular art, as evidenced by the number of national and international festivals dedicated to it in Iran.


25 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is Tehran.

Amre El-Abyad said...

If your father doent die of a heart attack, he will certainly die from the American bombs heeeee

common we need a party, champaign and egyptian Omar Khayam wine will be spilled when the Persian dirt , the enmies of arbism are bombed

Amre El-Abyad said...
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Anonymous said...
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Amre El-Abyad said...
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Ali Sanaei said...

Nice blog.
well done, keep it on ...

Naj said...

Wow,

what can ENVY do to loosers, such as this Amre-Albino, who are SO deficient in their national identity that call Khayam one of their own ... laughably pitiful!!!

===============
Ali, thank you for your visit.

Anonymous said...

Yes, once again Iran-e Mazloom.

Naj:

You are too young to have experience with these anit-Iran sentiments from Arabs and from Afghans (among many others).

Amre is just the tip of the ice-berg.

As I told you before (and you discounted my statements) we are surrounded by enemies who see their grandeur in our humiliation.

pen Name

Naj said...

Nono Pen name, I didn't discount your statement. I just said:

Moon shines and dog howls!!

Let'em howl!

I am in fact very PROUD that in spite of being surrounded by sworn enemies, Iran's model of self-defense is not that of Israel:

-PARANOIA!
&
-SAFETY ACQUIRED THROUGH APARTHEID"!!

Anonymous said...

2.1.1 Arabs

The mainly Shi’a-Muslim Arab community in Iran constitutes between 3 per cent and 8 per cent of the total population. The Arab community lives mainly in Khuzestan province (known as Ahwaz by the Arab community) adjoining Iraq, the location of much of Iran’s oil resources. Members of Iran’s Arab community have a long-standing grievance against successive governments, claiming that Arabs have been overlooked in terms of the distribution of resources aimed at social development. Frustration and economic deprivation has spilled over in recent months into a cycle of violent protest and repression which seems likely to continue unless the Iranian authorities take the measures necessary to address the social, economic and other grievances that gave rise to the unrest.
http://web.amnesty.org/library/Index/engmde130102006

Anonymous said...

Naj,
Can you write about Iran's moves?

I heard many times there are a good Iranians moves some win some recognitions around the world.

But sadly here what I read today:

"TEHRAN, Iran -- Iran protested the Cannes Film Festival screening of "Persepolis," an animated adaptation of Marjane Satrapi's graphic novel about growing up in Iran after the Islamic revolution, a semiofficial news agency reported Sunday.

The film is competing for the festival's top prize, the Palme d'Or, and has its official screening on Wednesday.

A letter of protest was sent to the French Embassy in Tehran by the Iran Farabi Foundation, a government-affiliated body in charge of festivals in Iran, according to the ISNA news agency, which provided the text of the letter.

"This year the Cannes Film Festival, in an unconventional and unsuitable act, has chosen a movie about Iran that has presented an unrealistic face of the achievements and results of the glorious Islamic Revolution in some of its parts," the letter read.

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/national/1107AP_Iran_Movie_Protest.html

Anonymous said...

I meant "Baluchis" rather than "Belchers" selling girls.

pen Name

Naj said...

2.1.1 Arabs ... what does this have to do with the topic of this post???!

================

Marjane Satrapi's a talented cartoonist and I like her. It's also not surprising Iranians have complained about animation of her books.

As I haven't seen the film, I cannot comment on it. But I can comment that the Cannes film fest IS the reason why the post-revolution Iranian cinema has gained its world-state (artistic) popularity.

I suppose this new move is going to reach the masses, as it is enveloped in controversy. I'll go see it when I can and will write about it if it's worth my time.

In the meantime, you can write about it in YOUR blog.

Naj said...

by the way, Anonymous, since you are so good googling up "bad" stuff about Iran, it's kind of a shame you don't really know ANYTHING about Iranian Cinema.

I will not write about the "Iranian cinema" here. That's what I do for a living ;)

Naj said...

Wow

This Sharam Razavi's taken good pictures. Thanks for the link to This is Iran

:) I even recognized one of our relative in those photos. :))

World is round and small!

David said...

I like the wood carving by Kianian! It is sort of a whimsical devilish merman. :) So did you buy a piece of his work?

I followed up on your last comment about Haleh Esfandiari. I found a good summary statement of her case released by the W.W. Institute and posted a link. I hope she will be released!

Naj said...

:)

Yes I liked them too. This merman looks like him, kind of!

Re Esfandiari, I really hope the Iranians did the smart thing and let her have a lawyer or something.

I personally think getting all these high-profile people trying to help a little low-profile lady is not helping her.

But as Pen Name stated elsewhere, there seem to be a rise in law-less behavior of certain factions in Iran's intelligence office. I sure hope they will not create the mess they created with Zahra Kazemi, and--god forbid-- "ghatlhaye Zanjireh-i" ...

Pushed to a corner, these lunatics are capable of anything!

Naj said...

oh forgot to answr your Q David,

No I didn't buy any.

Anonymous said...

روزى كه بشكفد گل جان پرور مرادبر مرغزار خرم ايرانم آرزوست

pen Name

Naj said...

soon, Pen ... I can see the prospect ... just wish it's not a mirage ...

Anonymous said...

Madness in the carnival of celluloid
http://www.theage.com.au/news/film/madness-in-the-carnival-of-celluloid/2007/05/21/1179601326379.html

Naj said...

Anon, can you please post this comment in my new post, and make it into a hyperlink as well.

Thanks a bunch.