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tv   Doc Film - Hidden Treasure - Irans Legendary Modern Art Collection  Deutsche Welle  October 13, 2018 9:15pm-10:00pm CEST

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shimmies kissed me with open eyes a speaking of many a course a million participants. in watching these everything is live from berlin we'll be back at the top of the hour with more news and if i. want. to touch. on the. first day of school in the jungle. or first conan let's. begin a tourist granda moment arrives illegally joining a regular jane on her journey back to freedom. in our interactive documentary tour of an orangutan returns home to the long d.w. don't come to tanks. to go after.
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fifteen hundred square metres of space this exhibition area in berlin is committed to gallery has been prepared for sixty works from the tehran museum of contemporary art works that have never before been shown in the west it's the start of a planned cultural exchange intended to strengthen relations between iran and the west. but it never came to that just weeks before it was due to open authorities in iran prevented the artworks from leaving the country.
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to. come run veba has lived in spain and france since the late one nine hundred seventy s. the architect artist and collector left his homeland a year before the iranian revolution. dba knows the tehran collection more intimately than most for he was once closely associated with it and he still spends a lot of time thinking about what's become of it he is the architect who designed
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the tehran museum of contemporary art in the one nine hundred seventy s. . devo was also its first director the tehran museum of contemporary art held the largest and most valuable collection of contemporary art outside europe and north america. tehran the capital of iran in the one nine hundred seventy s. the city experienced a rapid transformation into a modern metropolis western consumer goods were readily available the surge in oil prices allowed the city to become
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a hub for international business and lifestyle. the only thing missing was a place to show modern art. actively promoted culture and art in iran. because more. mccarthy. today she lives in paris she left iran for a life in exile on january sixteenth one thousand nine hundred seventy nine and headed to the city where she had studied architecture years earlier. arts plays an important role in my life that without it my life would be empty the history of iran dates back thousands of years this is a civilization rich in art and culture and it has produced many extraordinary artists in various fields of art see it architecture poetry or literature.
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in one thousand nine hundred sixty seven there was festival of arts was founded at the behest of embers from raw. fear. both iranian and international artists were invited to take part in this unique festivals of on guard orientation attracted global attention. was. the empress helped shape the country's cultural policy of the day giving it a very distinct style. she she had
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cultural ambitions for her country. the story of the contemporary museum in tehran began when i went to an exhibition it was where the city theater of tehran city is today i recall the artists i ran di rudi saying to me it would be nice if there was a place of our works would be preserved forever for you do you do steam q karo me moon or hamish i think bags when i got the idea of creating a museum for iranian artists. the regime. irani. it was not the only museum she had built but it was the most important one.
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architect come run dba had just completed his studies in washington d.c. he spent a lot of time thinking about a contemporary art museum in tehran as her cousin he was close to empress faraj she commissioned him to design the museum. memo knew some of the money. in terms of architecture i was interested in finding an identity. and one of the building to have an iranian forces. i can't think of the persian word for it anyway. and but yes i would say identity is the proper word. in the. isn't sympathy
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yet i very much wanted the museum to reflect a sense of iranian identity. in. the us that even they've in my design the building so that the museum with its light and let me. be reminiscent of desert town that's. because they tend to have very interesting rubes and they have bugbear wind towers and domes like you see on mosques that leave. the building was built on a site surrounded by an unfinished park. in the center of the museum and visible from all parts of the main building spiral walkway is oil pool a sculpture by japanese artist nora yuki her gucci. reflected
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light gives it the look of a dark mirror. it was installed in one thousand nine hundred seventy seven. who. come around often talks about the past with his family and friends. he met his wife in the tehran museum she worked there as a curator. this was. when word got around that m. prison the arabian government and the shah were buying our. members of the art
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world naturally approach them to suggest works to by. iran was very wealthy at the time and the international art market was out a low point. some of the works proposed were selected in part of this room and. that. eventually the collection grew to include well over three thousand works by both iranian and international artists painting such as mural on indian red ground by jackson pollack found their way there. along with works by brock. roy lichtenstein rauschenberg. and many others. financed by petrol dollars from the sale of oil its total cost is still a mystery but the criticism that iran spent too much money on art continues to
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annoy cameron dba to this day how do you take your mind chatter that and how much transactions were completely above board. and the reason. if you judge someone recently claimed that they had all the purchase receipts at that moment and . someone else said the museum had lost the money. but i still have them is that i can get them from the library. but. if you stay. here is the list of everything i bought everything is listed here. every work purchased while i was director of the museum is recorded here in the aftermath. cameron dba mainly bought works by
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contemporary american artists at prices that are absurdly low by today's standards . for. the total amount spent on art purchases while he was the museum director was about three and a half million dollars. this is three or so. and this is like to be done and well it was a fortune but has now multiplied in value. at that time i was fortunate to have had the chance to meet some of the artists myself. for example i met shy guys in the south of france. and henry more the more they were hard yes
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warhol it was very interesting to see warhol if he came to iran and made par shirts of the shah and a few others he was a very quiet and gentle man a little shy but we had a good reporter. who we brought him. almost forty years ago on the morning of the day the museum was to be opened in tehran come on d. but woke up with his heart pounding he was nervous it was supposed to be a major event. he wanted to celebrate a festival of art as well as demonstrate iran's ability to hold its own on the international level. it was the evening of october thirteenth one nine hundred seventy seven. the date marked both follow up our lobbies birthday and the opening of the museum
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in tehran. of unguarded artists from all over the world gave performances. he was working as a photographer in the museum. more . you had me at that time it all seemed so new to me and somewhat bizarre never mind what it was like for the general public with no relation to it. on the pictures i took at that time you can see their stunned reactions while i was taking pictures i realized what a wide gulf there was between this of unguarded lete and average citizens back so that was more than the population would accept at that time i wanted to capture all
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the reactions both from the intellectuals who were taking part in the celebrations and from those who were observing the event from the outside and did not understand what was going on. the pictures. look back they have never been shown in public anything showing the monarchy had to be hidden after the revolution and remained so to this day. and there is yet another reason why there are no pictures of the opening night. show. when the star rived he dipped his hand into the pool of oil his hands got dirty everyone stood there and shock until farrar started to laugh then everyone laughed and things quieted down again. but afterwards all the negatives of
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the pictures taken that evening were collected and destroyed because this moment was not meant to be recorded. the secret service saw to that. we should go green. yes the fact that the show is hand has been dirtied with oil. could be seen as a symbolic historical event because oil had polluted iranian society. that were not in ecological terms. but in the sense that a lot of money came into society and upset the existing class system. which i i the iranian revolution started in one nine hundred seventy eight
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among other things it was the population's reckoning with the shah and the imperial family for its pomp and extravagance and its pandering to the west. of vanguard was no longer received with approval. i. millions took to the streets of tehran in support of their new leader they saw him as their liberator from the shah's dictatorship. was. on february first one nine hundred seventy nine the figurehead of the revolution the ayatollah khomeini returned to iran from exile in paris from then on everything associated with the west was condemned banished and destroyed those who escaped
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were concerned about the art they had just bought. but what no one knew was someone was watching over it. his new suv sunni them i've heard about him i was so happy about it he was really someone who looked after the pictures. every day for almost forty years. has been walking down the long corridor to the basement of the tehran museum of contemporary art. under the shah he had been employed there as a driver. cause
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over a weekend and every day there were demonstrations against the shah here. a lot of students were on the street the campus is close by. we saw it all on the eleventh of february nine hundred seventy nine the revolution triumphed. then a few came from the revolutionary committee. yes i think that's what it was called back then but i'm no longer exactly sure and they occupied the museum like they told my coworkers they could leave everyone else went home much i was the one they kept on the honest. about me and i knew nothing about heart but i realized that when they put me in charge of this treasure i had to pull myself together and take good care of it.
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hoping to get a new car. max and monet rothko and because. at first for russia buzzy saw their work says little more than paint on canvas. i knew nothing about art. but if i tried to obtain information from different books there was no internet back then. i had to search through books for days just to get a little information about a work eventually i would find something and document it for the museum. child who's with me actually i mean understaffed and. probably the most precious piece in the vault is jackson pollock's mural on indian
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red ground it's estimated to be worth as much as two hundred fifty million dollars and is considered one of pollock's greatest works. shahbazi the driver watched over one of the world's most valuable art collections. its about you today is estimated at around three billion dollars.
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cordoba my. daughter gave me the courage to carry out this task in this way i'm not . these are tears of joy i'm simply happy i may not have been a good person to god. but god was good to me for putting me here today. i apologize for the tears i can't control myself yes. please forgive me. this treasure is so incredibly important to me.
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there are only a few people here in the museum know how much i love this treasure. iran is coming back to life after eight years of sanctions against the country and its nuclear program. the historic nuclear agreement was signed in july twenty fifth team most of the sanctions were lifted as a result iranian society was keen to reengage with the world and gain respect. it was an opportunity to resume the cultural dialogue. the outstanding collection of contemporary american and european art hidden in the basement of the tehran museum was widely talked about even in the past museums had tried to show iran's contemporary art collection but mutual trust had to be built.
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in the end berlin was chosen to present the western masterpieces and of works by iranian artists plans were made to mount the exhibition in the camilla gallery it was a sensational coup for the german capital. concentrate on us it all started as a joint venture between two museums our national gallery and the t.l.c.
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interocular gave the auto pina exhibition was curated by the deputy director of the national gallery q a humiliating. and he came into contact with colleagues that t.m.o. ca he's above all however he came into contact with the collection dozens of his it's incredible potential let's just slumbering in the basement submitted of course the support of the german foreign office was vital from the very beginnings as makings on its. thirty works by international artists from the tehran collection were to be shown as well as thirty works by twentieth century iranian artists. in spite of all the restrictions iran still has more artists today than ever before . here at one of tehran's most renowned art schools the majority of students are women
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a development that demonstrates the extent to which women have become emancipated over the past thirty eight years despite all the restrictions they have won their place in the islamic republic in the past only two to three women would be present at an art lecture. iran's most famous sculptor remembers it all well. parviz ton of ali teaches here at the mom their institute of art in tehran one of his sculptures was to be sent to the exhibition in berlin. for him an essential aspect of the exhibition was to show the mutual influence of already and and occident. proud of how india toggle flipout highly found me it's about the intersections between iranian and western culture about our workers often influenced by western
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schools because we didn't have our own tradition of sculpture. so we had a poetic and literary tradition but we had very little tradition when it comes to spatial content except in architecture that. you know on their mentality today is very iranian. today's iranian woman wants to express herself to show herself in the best possible light. that she is. a. chance when i turned forty or fifty years ago that didn't exist i mean everyone was emulating the west. today they're proud of themselves and that is a good thing so they used techniques his instruments for their works. but they want to express their own feelings. want to. call you up and this is an interconnection a marriage between iran and the west between east and west. is
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there was huge. shout of welcome. to the. dark as it was today more than ever the children of the revolution are emancipating themselves and questioning their role and that of the islamic republic not going to let us have. this that's the law as adults or at our generation dares to show itself more we women want to prove that if you men are allowed to have your way and do whatever you want and we women can do the same even though we have no place to do it we'll take it anyway yes our generation is definitely more rebellious. mindless chatter that's the only way to us back the brown strands or my mother's hair all the rest is mine. done raises the question of
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what happens when you go out onto the streets in tehran wearing a headscarf made of your own hair or your home to an army in there so will that really be a problem for her and our project is to get people to think about that in the course because the exiled matter they decide that. this is. the new generation has become more courageous the art scene in particular has felt the limits of the islamic republic since its foundation sometimes the artist's moods sometimes they win. to me.
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it was ok i'm going to die the new generation is more creative than before and everyone can express themselves as they wish. and it's a new kind of freedom of independence for me there's no large group which they have to belong to yes. it was up there you see before the revolution in the one nine hundred fifty s. and sixty's. there was a period in which our painters were proud to look to the west. at that time are good artists went abroad to italy france. when they came back they were happy and proud to say they had studied says and picasso or monet was this they were proud to say they were impressionists that they could paint like impressionists. i think a more time when iranian artists became aware of the issues in their country they wanted to express themselves through iranian thanks was after the revolution many
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artists became revolutionaries. others they were artists who took part in the revolution. and wanted to express things related to it you know. the money and a lot more bloodshed in society. or huge and they were politically minded as you will see without a doubt of his. pervious town of only is for milieu with the experiences of iranian artists in recent decades. he is one of the most prominent internationally as well.
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he wants to teach his students it is not the iranian in their work that makes them artists but the art they carry within themselves. that has more you're going to have and the focus is less on trying to get an iranian artist out of us than on trying to get us out of us yes he wants to know what we're capable of what makes up our essence. he wants to know why we should be turned into a new artist he wants to know what's inside of us and wants us to represent exactly that he has made it possible for us to believe in ourselves back in college and very much in one of the charms now the works are being taken from the vault and taken abroad and shown in berlin in addition to berlin they could be exhibited in many other places these works are very pure and untouched they show a new perspective they show how people in iran thought thirty years ago and which works of art they collected to influence the next generation's culture i get asked
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i am the sas if it was uttered. with thirty iranian and thirty western works the berlin exhibition was also meant to be an opportunity to reveal the observer's established patterns of perception that's one ton of ali was hoping for. one cafe to trial in america i'm very happy about it i think it's a good step. you know it would be a pity to keep these works in prison without anyone being aware of their existence you know matters and it was a song where you state dinner in a museum vault for years and never got out it's a good thing that not only the iranian people can see them but the whole world and the. so opens the door to cultural exchange when we acquired these works everyone thought that iran was a third world country and not worthy of art or to hide it in binary iran how if it
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make iran iran. you know so now go to. even forty years ago iran was already seeking acceptance on an international level and looking to free itself from western influences. tonne of only as guiding principle is an artist doesn't have to adhere to western ways of seeing in order to be an artist. and artists should not seek acceptance from outside himself neither from orient nor oxidant. the date of the berlin opening was approaching increasing media interest fueled
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criticism of the cultural exchange with the islamic republic from various quarters . one accusation was that germany would be giving iran money through the prussians cultural heritage foundation. to shrink it was amazing that the world's major museums pay low eighty's when loan fiends are expected then we say ok sorry we're out of that was clear to us from the outset and we quickly made it clear to our iranian colleagues that this is not about known fees but about a serious calculation of an exhibition of this kind of you know. all the art works being brought to berlin that dated from before nine hundred forty five were also checked for prominence. pat singer the president of the pression cultural heritage foundation also had to deal with assertions that some of the works in iran were forgeries.
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and. we'd heard that some works had allegedly been replaced with forgeries over the decades and that the originals had been sold for huge sums of money but you can't just say that these are bandits so it's hard to say anything about the much older story because of the importance of these works if they were to be sold abroad whether to museums or private parties i'd find it very hard to believe that you wouldn't hear anything about it as you know dined pre-bought because it's one of optics to one your fear that. in tehran preparations continue despite growing criticism of the cultural exchange this sculpture by parviz town of ali is destined for berlin. re store. and a few of her colleagues from the gmail gallery were sent to the iranian capital to
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prepare three particularly problematic works for transport to berlin. to counsel for the castle which i have now prepared that needed to be newly mounted in its frame then it needed vibration protection that something put between the rear surface and the canvas to prevent or reduce vibrations during transport all that's been taken care of and the condition of the work recorded prior to its dispatch to germany gets this before the spec poskitt. one cuts you existing or potential damage is noted in advance from tons fought. fiercely monken order and. a climate resistant shipping crate is custom made for each priceless work of art they are designed to prevent any further damage to the unique pieces.
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cannot confirm the claims that the art was not properly stored. down here in the basement she is reminded of the vaults of the national gallery and berlin. kimani that there's an air conditioner so that much i can say that i mean all this has obviously been dormant for a long time you can see that they haven't been moved much it's all a bit neglected and dusty but by and large the collection is in good condition someone has been looking after it lost. in berlin advance ticket sales had already begun in spite of rumors that conservative circles in iran were against the project but that didn't diminish the
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public interest in fact on the contrary. does interest and all the interest in this exhibition is tremendous that is clear and it comes from different places as you can also see that very clearly it's on the one hand simply seen these warhols and hence in some rough goes they are really so important in the history of art especially that of the second half of the twentieth century and they'll finally be seen again because that's one thing it is and then of course there is already such a special interest in the fact that it comes from iran and of course then you think back to the shah's time when the collection originated the works from this museum have a great history as a mathieson vaknin. difficult and. expectations for this cultural exchange were high and not just in germany.
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preparations were in full swing for the eagerly awaited opening day. all the difficulties it seems had been resolved and everyone had great hopes for their own form of dialogue between cultures. but then things suddenly took a turn for the worse the pression cultural heritage foundation canceled the exhibition. truants were summoned emotionally to go in the end it became increasingly difficult for us because everything that needed to be resolved the
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selection of the works questions about transport and insurance etc had been resolved but in order to actually start the ball rolling so to speak to begin packing them for transport we needed export permits and they were not issued in time that's when we said it was now impossible for us to do any further planning under such conditions decision on getting rich merchants. and i believe that this exhibition had to come about this dialogue between western art of the twentieth century and iranian art of the twentieth century would have changed perceptions of iran in germany and europe and among the public visit to get i think you have to do away with stereotypes there is the stereotype of a regime of a political constitution but of course a society is also made up of people and societies are usually much more colorful mentioning and it is a shock and it is a shift isn't it a few people. engaging
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in a discourse that does not make the world less secure or more warlike but actually makes it more peaceful him eventually leads to more understanding only happens through the understanding of people and societies in different countries.
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nico and african. taking up the fight against plastic pollution may save a few travelling in which case. we meet the activist behind kenya's ban on plastic bags. and check you tell a gun in confidence turning fast into paving stones. eco at africa in thirty minutes on d w. s one way to survive it's like just how do you cut into. bangladesh
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when the true face of the country. freedom independence a separation of state and church that used to be important but for decades political infighting here has hindered progress and islamist extremists are gaining more influence democracy and the rule of law are on shaky ground if this could get worse down love there should be. a bridge in. an auction in. bangladesh the dawn of islamism an exclusive d.w. report starts october eighteenth. and. odd.
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this is deja news live from bill and me it's turning out to be one of the biggest political demonstrations in germany's post-war history and history made a chill hundred forty thousand people take to the streets of berlin for what was billed as a protest against racism and populism we find out what motivated the marches to turn out also coming up. a very good pace for key regional event shims that looks set to force a political earthquake in one of germany's most conservative states and its place that could close off the shocks.


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