The Oral History of the Revolution Visual Arts narrated in Sadehrang

Mohammad Ali Fatemi
Translated by: Zahra Hosseinian


Sadehrang: Artistic and Cultural Memories of Majid Deldouzi, is the second works of a series titled The Revolution Visual Arts, which is one of Oral History books of Islamic Revolution Cultural Front.

This 351-pages book is formed with an interview done by Hossein Vahid Rezaeinia and the research and compiling done by Gholamreza Gholizadeh; and is published by “Rahyar Publication”. This press publishes the books of Islamic Revolution's Cultural Studies Bureau. Through Iranian Oral History website, you have recently familiarized with other works of this press which have been published in 2019 like this book.

The book begins with publisher's and narrator’s preface. The narrator recalled: "The memories I have mentioned in this book date back to the 1970s and 1980s and early 1990s." He is introduced in third page as follow: "He was born in Tabriz on November 10, 1955. He has always worked since years of military service in the army to the Literacy Movement and education, and from the cultural and artistic activity in the IRGC to the cooperation in the cultural activities of Hezbollah in Lebanon. And without studying in the art school, he has grown as an active and creative graphic artist. He, who drew and create artistic works in ‘Nahal Enghelab’, ‘Payam Enghelab’ and ‘Omid Enghelab’ Magazines, is the fruit of three decades of valuable experience in the Revolution art. The numerous logos and signs he designed for the revolutionary institutions and memorials of the martyrs, and the posters he created to disseminate revolutionary values are today in the line of our cultural heritage."

The book, Sadehrang, has 24 parts of which 21 parts contains the memoirs; part 22 contains pictures related to the narrator's story and memoir; part 23 contains documents, and part 24 contains examples of drawings the narrator has created during his career.

Each part of the memoirs is divided into chapters with appropriate titles and the narrator's stories are followed. In the early 1980s, these stories relates the defense fronts, and around the middle of 1980s and after the Lebanon  mission, they relates his activities in publishing and propaganda department of the IRGC which was then located in Najatollahi St., intersection of Karim Khan Zand of Tehran in a building called Shahid Amani: ‘In propaganda and publishing department... I started my career with illustration and graphic design for events and magazines; and during my final years of cooperation, I was, on a full-time basis, in charge of illustration and graphics for ‘Omid Enghelab’ and ‘Nahal Enghelab’ Magazines.

After that, the narrator goes to Tabriz and continues his activities in his hometown, which is specific to the years following Iraq's imposed war on Iran, but he is interested in holy defense time and in memorializing its values.

In the memoirs of Sadehrang, two trends stand out along the narrator's story and the events surrounding it. One is the path of self-enlightenment in his artistic endeavors. That is to say, what he was taught and how helped him to move forward from what he thought to do to the completion of work; in other words, what structural and content issues he encountered in producing art works. This process has also become a form of artistic empiricism, and is appealing to a community of book audiences seeking these experiences. Another trend is the narrator’s critical view to his surrounding, including in the post-war years, he expected higher quality of performance in appropriate to the circumstances.

At the end, read a memoir of the book called "a Rooster in the Front": ‘I want to talk about the Meimak Front... In addition to our drawing and graphic requirements, we had also brought speakers, amplifiers, and related devices from Tehran; plus a few things for theater and singing song, like the tapes of sound effect, I myself had collected. Our job was drawing, painting, operating singing song program, playing Azan, distributing promotional items, and so forth. But that wasn't all.

We were there for a week and, like the rest of the warriors, we selected a chieftain for our tent whose responsibilities were as follows: getting up before Morning Azan; tiding up his friend’s mess; playing Morning Azan; making breakfast; playing Noon Azan; and of course washing dishes. In another words, the chieftain was the mother of group. It was my turn to be chieftain and I wanted to compensate my friend’s carelessness. I got up half an hour early and started preparing the things.

- I’ll play an Azan today to make them to enjoy.

I put the Quran tape in cassette player ten minutes before Azan. I completely turned off the voice. Then I slowly turned it on. I myself enjoyed as I listened to the soft beautiful reciting of the Quran. Five or six minutes later, when it was the time of Azan, while I played Azan, also played rooster’s sound, cock-a-doodle-doo as effect. Little by little I increased the volume and the rooster’s sound and Azan was played simultaneously; both soft and gentle.

- It will lead to being reproach!

It was not important. The other chieftains made a lot of noise half an hour before the Morning Azan and bothered other warriors, who were resting, and unsettled their sweet morning sleep. That morning I mixed a heavenly soft sound with a natural sound and the result was good; everyone was thrilled to bits.

- We enjoyed.

- Where's that rooster?!

I said: ‘it was an audio tape.’ They looked at me smiling.

- It was a beautiful morning.

That day, the fighters came and looked for the rooster.

- God bless you, brother, you brought us to our village spirit.



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