Submitted by: Natalia di Pietrantonio
Virtual Saturday University: The Memory of the Ancients in Modern Iranian and Parsi Architecture
Apr 17 2021
Asian Art Museum of Seattle
10 AM – 11:30 AM
The Memory of the Ancients in Modern Iranian and Parsi Architecture
Talinn Grigor, University of California, Davis
In 1822 six fire temples adorned the cityscapes of West India. By the end of the century, Parsis had augmented that number tenfold. Many of these structures were erected in what they dubbed the "Persian Style," on floor plans described as "open." From the 1830s to the 1930s, the Persian Revival style evolved simultaneously and codependently in two different geo-cultures: the western coast of the Indian subcontinent, with large Parsi urban populations, as in Bombay and Surat, and the major cities of Qajar and Pahlavi Iran, in particular Shiraz and Tehran. These were interpretative "copies" of "originals," not necessarily of archeological sites but European and native fantastical travelogues as "authentic" memories and national resilience.
About the Presenter
Talinn Grigor is professor and chair of the Art History Program in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of California, Davis. Her research focuses on 19th- to 21st-century art and architectural histories through the framework of postcolonial and critical theories, grounded in Iran, Armenia, and Parsi India. Her books include Building Iran: Modernism, Architecture, and National Heritage under the Pahlavi Monarchs (2009); Contemporary Iranian Art: From the Street to the Studio (2014); and The Persian Revival: The Imperialism of the Copy in Iranian and Parsi Architecture (Penn State Univ. Press, 2021).