Established in 2004, Magic of Persia is a UK-based charity which nurtures and develops Iranian cultural practitioners of the arts. This is accomplished by establishing initiatives promoting modern, contemporary and classical Persian art, music and media in partnership with world-class institutions.
Programs include residencies for talented young artists at the Delfina Foundation, Gasworks and Visiting Arts. In addition, Magic of Persia offers several MA scholarships at the London Film School and MFA grants at the Royal College of Art.
The Magic of Persia Educational Family Weekends, held at both the British Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum, feature workshops and activities through which families can come together to learn about Persian culture and its unique contribution to modern society. This partnership between Magic of Persia and the British Museum continues through a series of informative Artists’ Talks arranged in conjunction with the museum’s acquisitions of contemporary Iranian art.
One of the charity’s most established initiatives to date is the bi-annual Magic of Persia Contemporary Art Prize (MOP CAP); a global search to identify the next generation of Iranian artists. The MOP CAP nominating and judging panels are comprised of gallerists, curators, artists, and critics who are familiar with the Iranian art scene. In keeping with Magic of Persia’s goal to provide maximum exposure for the applicants, the works of all shortlisted artists are exhibited in Dubai at a leading gallery during Art Dubai. Furthermore, finalists’ works are exhibited for public viewing during Frieze Art Fair at the Royal College of Art, London. The MOP CAP winner is awarded a solo exhibition the following year at a leading arts institution such as the Saatchi Gallery.
At the heart of Magic of Persia is a mission to provide much-needed opportunities for talented individuals both inside and outside of Iran; supporting them in gaining well-deserved international recognition. Through its activities, the charity strives to make a notable contribution to the long-term advancement of Iranian art and culture worldwide.