Iranian Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Mohammad-Mehdi Esmaeili said on Tuesday that the ministry’s new plan calls for an expansion of the export of Iranian cultural products.
Speaking to reporters during a visit to an exhibition displaying calligraphic paintings by Jalil Rasuli, he explained that the plan would be implemented by Iran’s cultural centers abroad, which fall under the auspices of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization.
“Work accomplished by Iranian cultural attachés will be assessed based on their success in the export of Iranian cultural products,” Esmaeili noted.
“Over the past month, I held meetings with culture ministers of five regional countries, during which I noticed their eagerness to expand cultural relations and organize mutual cultural exhibitions,” said Esmaeili, adding that Qatar, Lebanon, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan are ready to collaborate in organizing art exhibitions.
“Iranian cultural attachés must demonstrate good performance in cultural exchanges. We have selected a number of prominent artists to work as Iran’s cultural attachés in several countries in Europe and enhance the country’s cultural exchange with other nations,” he mentioned.
He called art the most expressive language for communication among different societies, and added, “Peace and friendship are the achievements of art, and our country has been a standard-bearer for peace and friendship over the past few millennia.”
Esmaeili also praised Rasuli for his lifetime achievements and said, “Calligraphy is an authentic Iranian art, and Iran must be regarded as the cradle of this art.”
He also called on Iranian art aficionados to visit the exhibition currently underway at the Gooya House of Culture and Art in Tehran.
The exhibition entitled “Plant a Friendship Tree” will run until July 28 at the gallery that can be found at No. 89, Kharim Khan Ave.
Rasuli’s works have been showcased in numerous solo and group exhibitions in Iran and other countries.
His “Bismillah Bird”, a diptych calligraphic painting was priced at 800 million rials (over $40,000), the top-priced work of two large auctions that were held for Quranic calligraphy works in Tehran in 2012.
The UNESCO office in Tehran, the International Council of Museums (ICOM), and Iran’s Eternal Figures Committee honored Rasuli by organizing an exhibition of his artworks at the Museum of Fine Arts of Tehran’s Sadabad Historical-Cultural Complex in 2008.
Photo: Culture Minister Mohammad-Mehdi Esmaeili (L) visits an exhibition of calligraphic paintings by Jalil Rasuli (R) at the Gooya House of Culture and Art in Tehran on July 12, 2022. (IRNA/Asghar Khamseh)