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Tehran Times - Iran's Leading International Daily

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    TEHRAN -- Iranian cultural officials joined thousands of mourners gathered in front of Tehran’s Vahdat Hall on Sunday to attend tar virtuoso Mohammadreza Lotfi’s funeral procession.

     
    Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Ali Jannati, Deputy Culture Minister for Artistic Affairs Ali Moradkhani, President Hassan Rouhani’s brother, Hossein Fereidun were among Lotfi’s fans and colleagues in the gathering.
     
    “This vast crowd, which has gathered here, shows the Iranian people’s deep love for this prominent musician,” Jannati said in an address at the gathering.
     
    “The reason for master Lotfi’s popularity was in his beliefs and his close relationships with people,” he added.
     
    “He was one of the eternal figures of Iranian music and undoubtedly, it is his colleagues’ duty to follow him to achieve a level of popularity such as he enjoyed,” Jannati stated.
     
    A number Lotfi’s friends addressed the crowd and musicians performed during the gathering.  
     
    Afterwards, Lotfi was transferred to Gorgan to be buried in his hometown in the northeastern Iranian province of Golestan. 
     
    The funeral ceremony will be held today and he will be buried in an urban area of the city. The Gorgan City Council plans to build a mausoleum for the great musician at the location.
     
    Lotfi, who was also famous for his skills in improvisation, died of cancer at Tehran’s Pars Hospital on Friday at the age of 68. 
     
    He had collaborated with prominent vocalists Mohammadreza Shajarian and Shahram Nazeri, and maestros like Hossein Alizadeh, Parviz Meshkatian and Ali Akbar Shekarchi over his lifelong career.
     
    In the late 1970s, they established Sheida and Chavosh, the bands which created “O Iran, the Land of Hope” and many other unforgettable works.
     
    He married Qashang Kamkar, sister of the Kamkar brothers, a major musical family in Iran. He is survived by his son Omid.
     
    MMS/YAW
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    TEHRAN -- Iranian director Alireza Amini has hired Turkish actor Tolgahan Sayisman for his new project “Shortwave on 444”, which will be shot on Qeshm Island in the Persian Gulf this autumn.
     
    All documents for Sayisman’s work in Iran have been approved by the relevant authorities and he will travel to Iran soon to prepare for the project, Amini told the Persian service of MNA on Monday.  
     
    “Shortwave on 444” is about two persons who are trapped in an oil rig but who speak different languages, so they cannot communicate with each other.
     
    Other members of the cast for the film are Iranian, said Amini.
     
    Sayisman has starred in “Love Do Not Say I’m Coming”, “Tulip Era”, “The Tigris”, “Captive Hearts”, “Love Eclipse” and several other TV series and movies.
     
    He also pursues a career in modeling and has worked as TV host.
     
    Amini is the director of “Letters in the Wind”, “Seven Minutes to Autumn”, “A Petition for Allah” and “Do Not Worry Sara”, and several other movies, which have been acclaimed at many international events.
     
    MMS/YAW
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    TEHRAN – Iran has entered into negotiations with Christie’s officials to host sales, which will be organized by the world’s largest fine arts auction house in the future, the Iranian minister of culture and Islamic guidance said on Monday.
     
    Kish Island will be a good location for the Christie’s auctions, Ali Jannati told the Persian service of ISNA.
     
    Iranian artists have raised millions of dollars at Dubai Christie’s auctions over the past years. 
     
    Christie’s has its main headquarters in London on King Street and in New York at Rockefeller Plaza.
     
    RM/YAW
    END
     

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    TEHRAN -- An English version of the Iranian satirical novel “Democracy or DemoCrazy” was promoted during a ceremony at the 27th Tehran International Book Fair (TIBF) on Sunday.
     
    Written by Seyyed Mehdi Shojaei, the book was translated into English by the American Iranologist Caroline Croskery, and was published by the Candle and Fog Publishing House.
     
    Shojaei, Croskery and the director of the London-based Iranian publisher Candle and Fog, Afshin Shahnetabar, attended the ceremony.
     
    Croskery praised “Democracy or DemoCrazy” for its theme and satirical tone, and added that these elements make the book interesting for American readers. 
     
    She said that despite the large population of Iranians in the U.S., Persian literature has not been widely introduced in the country.
     
    She has previously translated the Persian poem collection “We Are All Sunflowers” composed by Erfan Nazar-Ahari.
     
    By writing “Democracy or DemoCrazy”, Shojaei said that he aimed to criticize democracy in a novel, which is not bound to a particular time frame.
     
    He said that the language of the book has been artfully transferred in English version.
     
    The book is a narration related by a historical researcher about a nowhere land in an ancient time, in which according to the king’s testimony, each one of his 25 sons succeeds to the throne for a period of two years. However the order of their succession is according to the people’s vote not their age.
     
    The Persian version of the book, which came out in Iran in 2008, was recently republished by the Neyestan Publications in order to be offered at the Tehran International Book Fair.
     
    SB/YAW
    END

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    TEHRAN – A collection of Persian miniatures by French artists will go on display in an exhibition, which will open at the National Art Museum of Iran on May 20.

     
    The exhibition has been organized joint by the museum and Tehran’s Shams Gallery, curator Ali Jamshidi told the Persian service of ISNA on Monday.
     
    The French artists are the students of the Paris-based Iranian miniature master Abbas Moayyeri, who has trained many students in this field. 
     
    Miniatures by Brigitte Goldberg, Marie-Noel Robert, Valerie Lefebvre, Izabell Manukyan and several French-based Iranian artists including Shahriar Khataizadeh, and Mona Tajabadi are seen among the works, added Jamshidi who serves as director of the Shams Gallery.
     
    Moayyeri has been living in Paris since 1970, and has helped to preserve the basic and artistic aspects of this traditional Iranian art of miniature. 
     
    He is a follower of the school of Persian miniaturist Hossein Behzad (1894–1968) and has trained over 100 students during his 40-year career.
     
    Moayyeri created courses on Persian miniature at the Association for the Development of Cultural Activities (A.D.C.A) in Paris in 1984.
     
    He has been teaching at (A.D.C.A) for 30 years, conveying his valuable experience to admirers of this particular painting style.
     
    The exhibit will be running until June 3 at the museum located on Kamalolmolk St., Baharestan Square. 
     
    RM/YAW
    END

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    TEHRAN – Print works by 75 world-renowned artists including Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, and Marc Chagall will go on display in an exhibition at the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art (TMCA) next week.

     
    The exhibition entitled “A History of Contemporary Printmaking from Impressionism until Now” will open on May 12, the secretary of the exhibition Ahmad Vakili said in a press release on Sunday.
     
    Works by Jasper Johns, Edvard Munch, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, James Whistler Jim Dine, Antoni Tapies, Joan Miro, Camille Pissarro and Andy Warhol have also been selected for the show, which will run until August 7.
     
    “Printmaking is a powerful medium that provides suitable capabilities for artists to achieve excellence in artistic expression,” Vakili stated.
     
    Some of the artworks will be put on display for the first time, he said.
     
    The works have been selected from a treasure trove of printmaking art kept in the storehouse at the museum.
     
    SB/YAW
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    TEHRAN -- The last two books of “Hashemi’s Diary” have recently been published.

    “Days of Resistance” and “Construction and Efflorescence” were introduced during a ceremony at the National Library and Archives of Iran (NLAI) on Tuesday.

    “Hashemi’s Diary”, which comprises 14 volumes, is the memoirs of Expediency Council Chairman Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani from the early years of the Islamic Revolution.

    Hashemi Rafsanjani, presidential advisor Hojatoleslam Ali Yunesi and a number of officials attended the ceremony.

    “Days of Resistance” focuses on the beginning of the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war and the liberation of Iran’s Khorramshahr, which was captured by Iraq in 1980.

    “Construction and Efflorescence” contains Hashemi’s memoirs from the 1990s.  

    In addition, “Step by Step with Cedar”, a book written by Hashemi’s wife Effat Marashi and containing her memoirs, was introduced at the ceremony.

    RM/YAW
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    TEHRAN – Cultural commonalities between Iran and India were discussed during a session held on the sidelines of the ongoing 27th Tehran International Book Fair (TIBF) on Monday.

    Elham Baqeri, Mohammad-Javad Zeinali and several other scholars attended the session, which was organized by the Iran Book House and the Embassy of India, the Persian service of IRNA reported on Tuesday.

    Speaking at the meeting, Baqeri said that the origin of each country is rooted in the language, literature and art of that country, “The roots of language and literature, and the culture of a country are considered the myths of that country.

    “We witness old and common facts in the myths of both countries such as lies, truth, jealousy, over-expectation and satisfaction, all of which are rooted deeply in our subconscious,” she added.

    The myths of a land make the future of that land, she said, adding, “To conduct research on the myths and comparing them with myths from other countries help to achieve common points.”

    Zeinali regarded the Indian Persian-speaking poet Amir Khusrau Dehlavi (1253-1325) as a great force for  communications between Iran and India, “Iran and India have enjoyed literary and cultural relations over the years since they are old neighbors, and Dehlavi has been a great help in broadening these relations even more.”

    The Tehran Book Fair will be running until May 10 at Tehran’s Imam Khomeini Mosalla.

    RM/YAW
    EDN

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    TEHRAN -- A collection of historical globes bearing the name of Persian Gulf has been put on display in an exhibition at Tehran’s Milad Tower.

    “This exhibition is a special event, because it features documents that confirm the authenticity of the name of the Persian Gulf,” Tehran mayoral advisor Mohammad-Hadi Ayazi said during the closing ceremony of the exhibit on Monday evening.

    The collection comprises over ten globes, which were in a personal collection belonging to former French Prime Minister Georges Pompidou (1911–1974). Iran previously acquired the collection.

    “Sadeq Kharrazi (former Iranian foreign minister) had an active role in bringing these globes to Iran,” Ayazi stated.

    “He received the globes from Georges Pompidou’s personal collection and after some negotiations, gave them to Milad Tower for the show” he added.

    “These artifacts could be sold at international auctions at high prices, but we have the collection here and are proud of it,” he stated.

    The oldest globe of the collection was made during the 17th century.

    Pompidou was interested in history and art. This can be seen by the establishment of the Centre Beaubourg, which was renamed Centre Pompidou after his death. Located in Paris, the center houses a vast public library, the National Museum of Modern Art, which is the largest museum for modern art in Europe, and a center for music and acoustic research. 

    MMS/YAW
    END

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    TEHRAN – An exhibition displaying photos of popular uprisings in Muslim countries is currently underway at the Aseman Cultural-Artistic Complex.

    Works by thirteen international photojournalists have been selected for the exhibition entitled “History without Lies”.

    The photos have been taken in Iran, Egypt, Libya and several other countries over the past 35 years.

    Works by Iranian photographers Kaveh Golestan, Alfred Yaqubzadeh and Mohammad Farnud are seen in the collection.

    The exhibit will run until May 18 at the complex, which is affiliated with the Iranian Academy of Arts.

    The complex is located at 47 Fallahi St. off Vali-e Asr Ave.

    SB/YAW
    END

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  • 05/07/14--08:08: Art news in brief
  • Colombian festival to screen Iranian films
     
    TEHRAN -- Two Iranian short films will compete in the Fifth International Lounge of the Light (Salón Internacional de la Luz), a film festival in Bogota, Colombia.
     
    Babak Habibifar’s “After 17 Hours” and “Somewhere up There” will go on screen during the festival, which will be held from May 13 to 18.
     
     
    Iran, Russia to discuss literary exchanges at Moscow conference
     
    TEHRAN -- Moscow State Linguistic University will host a conference on literary exchanges between Iran and Russia on May 15.
     
    Russian and Iranian literati have been invited to the conference, which has been organized to celebrate Iran’s National Khayyam Day.
     
    SB/YAW
    END

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    TEHRAN – The Iranian dramatist Hamidreza Naeimi has completed a play on the Latin American revolutionary Ernesto Che Guevara.
     
    Speaking to the Persian service of ISNA on Wednesday, Naeimi said that he spent two years studying prior to writing the play.
     
    He said that the play has a difficult script and it can be classified in the documentary theater genre.
     
    The play will be published in the near future, he added.
     
    A major figure of the Cuban Revolution, Ernesto Che Guevara (1928–1967) was an Argentine Marxist revolutionary, physician, author, guerrilla leader, diplomat and military theorist. 
     
    His stylized visage has become a ubiquitous countercultural symbol of rebellion and a global insignia in popular culture.
     
    SB/YAW
    END

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    TEHRAN -- The expansion of media relations between Iran and China was discussed during a meeting in Tehran on Wednesday.
     
    The meeting was held between China International Radio (CRI) Director General Wang Gin Nian and the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) Deputy Director Hojjatoleslam Ramezan Musavi-Moqaddam, the Persian service of ISNA reported on Wednesday.
     
    Speaking at the meeting, Musavi pointed to cultural commonalties between the two countries, which help deepen the ties.
     
    “The cultural and historical background of the two nations indicate the close friendship between Iran and China, therefore, media collaboration in all technical and production fields can be developed,” Musavi said.
     
    He added that IRIB is ready to cooperate with CRI and other Chinese audio and visual media.
     
    IRIB has expanded its radio and TV channels over the past years, Musavi said, “We also have established several international channels to cover the news.”
     
    Wang Gin Nian warmly received the idea of bilateral cooperation and expressed his thanks for the hospitality of IRIB officials.
     
    CRI has had good cooperation with Radio Iran, Wang Gin Nian said, adding that a new agreement has also been signed with Radio Farhang (culture) for further collaboration.
     
    Founded on December 3 of 1941, CRI is China’s state-owned international radio broadcaster, currently headquartered in Babaoshan, a sub-district of Beijing.
     
    RM/YAW
    END

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    TEHRAN – A troupe will be performing “Iran-Australia”, a play on Iranians’ public jubilance on various occasions since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, in Tehran during August.
     
    The play will premiere at the Arasbaran Cultural Center on August 1 and will be running for about one month, director Sajjad Afsharian told the Persian service of ISNA on Tuesday.
     
    The troupe has performed the play once in a workshop named “From Idea to Performance” at the Tehran University of Art, he said. 
     
    “I have always liked to work with the youth and support those who have new ideas,” he added.
     
    The title of the play refers to the 1998 FIFA World Cup qualification play-off during which Iran held Australia to a 1–1 draw at home, and a 2–2 draw in Melbourne.
     
    Afterwards, Iranians took to the streets across the country to celebrate the victory.
     
    RM/YAW
    END

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  • 05/07/14--08:15: What’s in art galleries
  • Jewelry
     
    * A collection of jewelry and precious stones will be showcased in an exhibition at the Mess Negar Gallery from May 8 to 10.
     
    The collection has been created by Azin Baqapur and Sahar Sangalaji.
     
    The gallery is located at No. 5 in the Park Prince Building on Molla Sadra Highway.
     
     
    Painting
     
    * The Shokuh Gallery will be playing host to an exhibition of abstract paintings by Danial Mollanoruzi from May 9 to 14.
     
    The gallery can be found at 19 Amir Nuri Alley, North Salimi St. near Andarzgu Blvd.
     
    MMS/
    END

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    TEHRAN -- A dramatic photograph of an unknown soldier’s funeral won the first prize at the Second Photo Festival of Heavenly Frames on Tuesday.

     
    Gholamreza Qasemi took the photo during a heavy snowfall in the northwestern Iranian city of Marand last winter.
     
    He received his award during a ceremony at the Iranian Artists Forum in Tehran.
     
    The festival is organized annually by Tasvirnet, a major Iranian photo agency, to promote photos on martyrs and victims of the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war.
     
    The second prize went to Meisam Maleki Qazvini for a photograph, which displays a mother in tears laying on the grave of her soldier son as the father stands beside her.
     
    A picture, which shows a mother cleaning the stele of one of her three soldier sons who were killed during the war, won the third prize. 
     
    The photo was taken by Samar Tabrizi, who dedicated her prize to the mother, who also attended the award presentation ceremony.
     
    Filmmaker Abolfazl Jalili and photographers Mohammad Noruzi and Hadi Soleimani were the members of the jury.
     
    Addressing the audience, Jalili said that unlike other Iranian festivals, the jury never received any official recognition.
     
    “Everything went justly… So I have no regrets about being on the jury,” he added.      
     
    “We are not dependent upon any political party or wing,” said festival secretary Mohsen Mohammdi at the ceremony.
     
    “The festival was organized as a labor of love,” he added.
     
    The winners were selected from among over 2000 submissions.
     
    The winning works and a selection of the submissions will be put on display in an exhibition at the Martyrs Museum in Tehran from May 10 to 20. The museum is located on Taleqani Street. 
     
    MMS/YAW
    END
     

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    TEHRAN – Syrian director Fahd Miri has begun shooting a biopic in Iran on Imam Muhammad Taqi al-Jawad (AS), the son of Imam Reza (AS) and the ninth Imam of the Shia.
     
    Written by Syrian screenwriter Mahmoud Abdul Karim, the series, named “Babul Murad”-- a title given to Imam Reza (AS) -- involves six countries in its production: Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Kuwait and Bahrain, the IRIB (Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting) announced Thursday in a press release.
     
    The series depicts the birth of the Imam in Medina in 811, the companionship of his father, the martyrdom of Imam Reza (AS) when he was poisoned by the Abbasid Caliph Mamun in the year 818, and his own martyrdom.
     
    Shooting has been in progress for the last two months and is estimated to be completed within the next two months.
     
    Iranian costume designer Mohsen Musavi, stage designer Majid Mirfakhraii and cinematographer Yadollah Najafi are collaborating in this project.
     
    Lebanese Shia cleric Sheikh Ali al-Kourani and several Iranian clerics are the religious advisors who are collaborating in the project.
     
    A cast of 120 members from Syria, Bahrain, Kuwait and Iran are acting in the series.
     
    Syrian actors Wael Ramadan, Bashar Ismail, Nadin Khoury, Iraqi actor Sadiq Abbas, Lebanese actors Ali Saad, Jamal Hamdan, Ali Tahan, Bahraini actor Adel shams, and Iranian actors Mahmud Rahmani, Ahmad Kaveri, Ali Ebadi and Mohammad Faran are among the major cast members of the series.
     
    RM/YAW
    END
     

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    TEHRAN -- Iran and Tunisia established a joint cinema society during the opening ceremony of Tunisia’s Med Memories Film Festival on Wednesday evening.
     
    The Tunisia Friendship Association and the Iranian Youth Cinema Society signed an agreement to boost cinematic cooperation between the two countries.
     
    The ceremony, which was held at the Ibn Rashiq Cultural Center in Tunis, was attended by Iran Cinema Organization Director Hojjatollah Ayyubi and festival founder Fethi Ben Othman.
     
    At the ceremony, Othman called the society a bridge, which connects Iranian and Tunisian cineastes.
    He said that Tunisians are very interested in Iranian cinema.
     
    Afterward, Ayyubi said that establishment of such societies introduces Iranian cinema in other countries.
     
    Iran is the guest of honor at the 2nd edition of Med Memories Film Festival, which runs until May 10.
     
    Iranian directors Manijeh Hekmat and Hojjatollah Ayyubi accompany Ayyubi during his four-day sojourn in Tunis.
     
    “Toranj” directed by Mojtaba Raei, “Three Women” by Manijeh Hekmat and 12 other Iranian films will go on screen at the Ibn Rashiq Cultural Center and Parnassus Cinema.
     
    “Karim” by the Iranian filmmaker Mohsen Barmahani was the opening film of the festival. The film follows the daily life of a young Tunisian filmmaker named Karim after the first sparks of the Tunisia revolution of January 14, 2011.
     
    SB/YAW
    END

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    TEHRAN – The 13th edition of the International Radio Festival of Iran will open today in Tehran.

     
    Several programs and meetings have been arranged during the three-day festival, Persian media reported on Friday.
     
    A total of 340 programs from seventeen countries will be competing in the international section of the festival.
     
    The programs have been selected from among 700 works submitted to the secretariat of the festival from different countries including China, South Korea, Iraq, India, Serbia, Poland, France and Ukraine, IRIB Deputy Director of Radio Mohammad-Hossein Sufi said earlier in a press release.
     
    Sufi said that the festival aims to introduce the best programs on radio and to achieve new and creative ideas, and to honor radio programmers.
     
    Several programmers and broadcasters have been selected to be honored during the opening and closing ceremonies of the festival.
     
    In addition, the 5th International Radio Forum, whose central theme will be “Rethinking Radio”, will be held concurrently with the festival.
     
    The festival has been organized by the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) in collaboration with Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).
     
    RM/YAW
    END

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    TEHRAN – The award-winning Iranian movie “Fish and Cat” will compete in the 61st Sydney Film Festival, which will be held from June 4 to 15 in Australia.

     
    Directed by Shahram Mokri, the film narrates the story of a group of university students who face various problems during their trip to the north of Iran.
     
    The film has recently won the FIPRESCI Award and the Youth Jury Award at the 28th Fribourg International Film Festival in April 2014.
     
    Mokri won the special jury prize for this film at the 10th Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) in December 2013.
     
    It won the best film award at the 13th Lisbon and Estoril Film Festival in Portugal in November 2013.
     
    The 70th Venice International Film Festival honored the film with the Special Orizzonti Award for Innovative Content in September 2013.
     
    Sydney Film Festival is one of the world’s longest-running film festivals, and is a major event on the NSW cultural calendar. 
     
    The 12-day festival screens feature films, documentaries, short films and animations from around the world.
     
    SB/YAW
    END

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