Iran Heritage Foundation in association with the British Museum opens the 'Shah 'Abbas: the remaking of Iran' exhibition.
The exhibition documents and illustrates the work of 17th century artists and craftsmen under the patronage of Shah 'Abbas I and his wider contribution to Persian culture, architecture and language. Displays include artefacts such as lavish gold-ground silks, carpets, manuscripts, paintings, metal work and calligraphy. The exhibition includes gifts that Shah 'Abbas endowed to shrines in Mashhad, Ardabil and Qum, many of which have never been previously displayed outside of Iran.
Vahid Alaghband, Chairman of the Iranian Heritage Foundation and Group Chairman of Balli Group, commented: "Shah 'Abbas was the most eminent ruler of the Safavid dynasty in Persia who, with his military successes and efficient administrative system, raised Iran to the status of a great power. When he died his dominions extended from the Tigris to the Indus. Through trade and diplomacy he fostered good relations with Europe and welcomed European diplomats in Iran, whilst ushering in a golden period for Persian art. He commissioned many beautiful works of art, grand architecture and restored major monuments across the country. Today, his legacy lives on, in the magnificent buildings of Isfahan and through his opulent gifts found in many Iranian holy shrines.
"This fabulous exhibition is a celebration of the achievements of one of Iran's greatest rulers and showcases the vibrancy and culture of 17th century Iran" he added.
Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, said: "My colleagues and I are grateful to The Iranian Heritage Foundation and its chairman Vahid Alaghband for their generous support of the exhibition, the latest in a long series of joint projects with the British Museum to present Iranian culture to the widest public in London."
The 'Shah 'Abbas: The Remaking of Iran' exhibition at the British Museum will run until 14 June
About The Iran Heritage Foundation
The Iran Heritage Foundation is a non-political UK registered charity founded in 1995, with the mission to increase awareness about, promote and preserve the history, languages and cultures of Iran. Though only active since 1995, the Foundation has grown rapidly to establish itself on an international level by supporting programmes in Armenia, Austria, Canada, Estonia, France, Georgia, Germany, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, the United States, the United Kingdom and Iran.
The objectives of the Foundation are pursued by means of organising and supporting research, publication of books, and establishment of fellowships at major academic institutions and diverse activities of cultural or scholarly merit in a variety of related fields, on a worldwide basis.
About Balli Group plc
Balli Group plc is one of the UK's largest private, multi-national corporations, headquartered in London. Established in 1982, Balli Holdings operates a number of affiliated companies with offices in key economic and business hubs around the world and operations in over 20 countries. Included within the Balli Group portfolio are balli steel and balli real estate, as well as other specialist companies providing services in commodity trading, industrial activities and aviation.
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