Art And Culture

Ziaee’s Constitutional Revolution in Drawings

  Cover of the book  Cover of the book

‘Constitutional Revolution in Drawings,’ a comic account of the historic event in Iran by the late caricaturist and theoretician Mohammad Rafi Ziaee (1948-2016) has been published by Morvarid Publications.

In the preface of the 444-page book, Ziaee wrote, “Actually, it is not my intention to quip about the Constitutional Revolution. If we have a few serious events in Iran, the Constitutional Revolution is surely one of them. But it has become a habit for us, the humorists, to make a jest of very serious issues. The point is, when an issue becomes too serious, it starts to sprout offshoots of frivolity. It has always been this way.”

In the book, Ziaee gives a humorous account of the period starting from 1905, when the constitutional uprising took shape and ended in the 1921 Persian coup that led to the establishment of the Pahlavi Dynasty (1925-1979).

Kings of the Qajar era (1785-1925) such as Nasseruddin Shah, (reigning from 1848-1896) and Mozaffar Shah, who ruled between 1896 and 1907, have been portrayed in the narrative.

The book contains over 350 caricatures with brief descriptions about major events of the Persian Constitutional Revolution, Mehr News Agency reported.

Ziaee in his 30-year efforts has left behind thousands of caricatures in various magazines including ‘Hezar-Qesseh’, ‘Cartoon for Children,’ ‘Gol-Aqa,’ Keyhan Caricature, ‘Khorjin’ and ‘Pilban’. He also wrote hundreds of articles in his area of expertise.

He won the special award at Skopje World Gallery of Cartoons 1999, Macedonia. A bronze plaque and diploma of honor from Tolentino Caricature contest 2003, Italy, and second prize from Olense Kartoenale Annual Cartoon Contest 2004, Belgium, were his other achievements. “His works have a bitter humor. They are in black and white, with dense, punctuated hachures. Peace and humanity were his main concerns, as can be observed in most of his works,” fellow cartoonist Hadi Heydari told ISNA following Ziaee’s death on June 23.