Art exhibit reflects environmental disaster in Urmia Lake

February 15, 2011

Tehran Times Art Desk

@T= TEHRAN -- Iranian artists have portrayed the gradually shrinking Urmia Lake, once home to various migratory birds such as flamingos and pelicans, in their collections.
A group exhibition of paintings by artists from the city of Urmia, West Azarbaijan, has been inaugurated at the art and cultural complex of the city on Sunday featuring the gradual death of the lake.
The Urmia Lake is a salt lake lying in the northwestern Iran, which used to be home to various migratory birds including flamingos, pelicans, spoonbills, ibises, storks, avocets, stilts, and gulls.
A collection of 45 visual artworks of paintings, graphic designs, photography, illustrations and sculptures by 19 artists are in the show with the central theme of “Water and Its Role in Drying up of Urmia Lake”.
Tohid Tavana, Shahla Rashidian, Ramin Rahimi, Sheida Fallahi, Yaser Qader, Roya Sodagar, and Mahsa Qolipur are some of the artists whose works are on display.
The lake is located between the provinces of East Azarbaijan and West Azarbaijan. It is the third largest salt water lake on earth with a surface area of approximately 5,200 square kilometers.
Urmia Lake, which is registered as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO, is estimated to be dry within three years.
Photo: A boat and carcass of a bird are seen on the bed of the gradually shrinking Urmia Lake in a photo taken on August 3, 2010. (ISNA/Mehdi Kazemzadeh).