In the UK, Iranian contemporary writing and culture has a quiet presence with few published works and events to engage with, yet there is great appetite to learn and exchange more.
The population of Iran is over 80 million. It is a highly literate country and home to one of the largest international book fairs in the world. From 1990 - 2000 Iranian women novelists published a wave of bestsellers around the turn of the millennium. Now we are seeing a movement of civil society in Persian literature. How will this be brought to the attention of the world?
Short stories are a popular form in Iran, offering a window to different perspectives and an opportunity to showcase leading contemporary voices. Literature in translation is also becoming more popular with the Man Booker International Prize and collections of international short fiction from publishers such as Comma gaining traction.
Visiting Arts has, for over 10 years, engaged with theatre directors and film makers, visual artists, gallerists, designers and architects from Iran. We feel that the time is right to explore some of the rich writing and contemporary storytelling of young modern Iranian writers and believe that these writers should be able to reach a greater contemporary audience and readership. We are also aware that the most satisfactory relationships are reciprocal and we would like to open up the contemporary Iranian readership to UK writers and publishers.
The programme aims to:
* develop interest in and knowledge of contemporary writing from Iran
* create new, high quality translations from Farsi to English
* create a network of interest from writers, critics, artists, publishers and other creative professionals in the UK and beyond
* engage local audiences through interventions such as readings and discussions
* develop artistic and professional practice for Iranian writers and translators
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