Hungarian artist honored at TIBF

2018-05-06 16:16

Hungarian artist and illustrator Gizella Varga Sinai was honored at the unveiling ceremony of her translation of ‘Rubaiyat’ by Omar Khayyam held by Iran’s Cultural Fairs Institute at the 31st Tehran international book fair (TIBF).

The ceremony was attended by the Hungarian ambassador to Iran Janos Kovacs; Iranian celebrated filmmaker on the husband of Gizella, Khosrow Sinai; General Director of Cultural Affairs of Hungarian Foreign Ministry Judith Hammerstein; and Deputy Director of the 31st Tehran International Book Fair Amir Mas’oud Shahram-Nia who is also Director of Iran’s Cultural Fairs Institute (ICFI) who honored the painter for her several years of activity in Iranian literature and art.  

Born in Hungary in 1944, Gizella Varga Sinai studied art education at the “Akademie for Angewandte Kunst” in Vienna/Austria and came to Iran in 1967.

This event began by showing a documentary film about the life and works of Gizella Varga, and then Khosrow Sinai said: “I and Gizella first met each other in Vienna, where we were students. Her extensive knowledge about the Iranian literature and myths made us closer as we finally married and returned to Iran.”

“During all these years, Gizella has held numerous exhibitions whether individually or with other Iranian artists. The spirit of Iranian life is evident in her work and her illustration of ‘Rubaiyat’ by Omar Khayyam was inspired by the subjective world of Khayyam,” he added.

Following the program, Gizella Varga Sinai said: “This is the moment of glory for me, and I am so emotional now." 

The artist also added: "My love for Iranian culture blossomed in Hungary because we are a people who love literature.”

She has already explained about her life: “Ever since my childhood, I was pre-occupied with our own Hungarian stories, which do not date back to more than 1000 years. Historians presume that we came from the East; our famous poets and painters have created works expressing this nostalgia for the Orient as an ancestral homeland.”

“With this background, I came to Iran where a powerful and heroic past is sensed. It was my duty as an artist to pursue the tie between the past and the present and to show it in my paintings. Where did the old myths, fables, and stories come from? How can we express that they are still alive in us, that they now exist, and will continue in the future?”

Amir Mas’oud Shahram-Nia also expressed his pleasure that Tehran book fair held a ceremony to honor Mrs. Gizella Varga Sinai. 

“Iran has find the opportunity to participate at Budapest Book Fair this year and that we hosted Hungary in Tehran book Fair and the hope that it will be a beginning for improving cultural ties between the two countries,” he added.

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