House of Lucie opens an Iranian branch in Kashan

TEHRAN — House of Lucie, a major New York-based photography exhibition venue, opened a branch in the central Iranian city of Kashan on Thursday.

The branch was set up in a Qajar-era house, which was restored to host photography events afterwards.

The historic house has three courtyards, 30 rooms and two wind towers, a hallmark of Iranian architecture in cities located in the desert region.

The house was born with the opening of two exhibitions featuring the works of Italian photographer Yvonne De Rosa and Iranian photographer Mehrdad Oskui, best known for his documentary films.

The Kashan branch of the house was created by Hassan and Hossein Roshanbakht with input from US-based Iranian curator Hossein Farmani, who established Maison de Lucie in 2016 to showcase the works of Lucie Award winners.

Created by the Lucie Foundation in 2003, the Lucie Awards ceremony is an annual gala that celebrates master photographers and their contributions to the field of photography.

To date, more than 160 photographers, including Henri Cartier Bresson, Mary Ellen Mark, Steve McCurry, Annie Leibovitz, Gordon Parks, Sebastiao Salgado, Lillian Bassman, Lord Snowdon, Dawood Bey, Tsuneko Sasamoto and Peter Magubane, have received the award.

The Roshanbakht brothers spent about two years converting the dilapidated house into an art exhibition center. In the restoration process, they improved the historic house with modern architectural elements, which did not detract from the authenticity of the house.

Farmani previously established the Hasht Cheshmeh Art Space and Steve House, a photographers’ hideout, in Kashan in collaboration with the Roshanbakht brothers.

The Lucie Foundation also awards the Lucie Photo Book Prize. This program is a juried competition open to a diversity of book submissions, from traditional publications to prototypes, from handmade books to zines. The awards are given to photographers, editors, curators or editors in both traditional and independent categories.

Photo: A poster for the exhibition of Iranian photographer Mehrdad Oskui at the Maison de Lucie in Kashan.

MMS/YAW

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