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Photo exhibition in Tbilisi on Parajanov’s 90th birthday

Gita Elibekyan
Public Radio of Armenia
Tbilisi

An exhibition of photos by Sergey Parajanov has opened at the “Hayartun” Cultura lCenter in Tbilisi on the 90th birthday of the renowned Armenian film director. Ron Holloway’s film “Parajanov: A Requiem” will be screened within the framework of the event.

“I’m an Armenian living in Tbilisi accused of Ukrainian nationalism,” Parajanov once said about himself. “Wherever I live, I shoot good films. Even if I’m sent to Africa, I’ll shoot good African movies,” he added.

Parajanov gained international fame after the “Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors” (1964), which won a number of international awards. However, his masterpiece was The Color of Pomegranates about Armenian ashug Sayat-Nova. Both films faced severe Soviet censorship.

Famous photographer Yuri Mechitov, who considers Parajanov his first teacher, says: “In reality, no one knows him well: he was an abnormal man, and this was his talent.”

Speaking about his house in Tbilisi on a visit to France, Parajanov once said: “I live in my Armenian home in Tbilisi, where I have to sleep with an umbrella as the roof leaks during the rain, but I’m happy as in Fellini’s films.”

Today Parajanov’s house has been renovated, but belongs to one of his neighbors, who bought it from the director’s son. However, more than 20 years after his death people from all over the world still visit the house, although few things remind about Parajanov there today.

The influential Paris-based “Le Figaro” daily calls Parajanov a “super talent,” considering him the most gifted director of our times. His name is included in the top 100 of the best directors of all times.

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