Khayyam statue looking for apt location in United States

May 18, 2015

TEHRAN – Officials in some U.S. states are conferring with each other to find a suitable site to place the statue of Persian classic poet Omar Khayyam (1048-1131), which was created by Iranian sculptor Hossein Fakhimi.

The two-meter tall statue was sent from Tehran to New York in September 2014 to be installed in Manhattan.

“Several American states have asked for the statue, however the final decision has not been made, and the Iranian officials are still negotiating to arrive at a final agreement,” Fakhimi told the Persian service of ISNA on Sunday.

The decision to set up the statue as a Persian symbol was made by Manhattan municipal officials during Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s trip to New York in September 2013.

Fakhimi added that he has made two other copies of the statue, one of which has been installed in Khayyam’s hometown of Neyshabur, and the other one is supposed to be sent to Florence, Italy.

“I spent several months studying about Khayyam and consulted with several scholars. I had known Khayyam was a poet, but found out that Khayyam not only was a poet, he was a great astronomer, philosopher and mathematician. He was the founder of many fields of science in the world and I tried to portray all these characteristics in his statue,” he explained.

Omar Khayyam, a Persian mathematician, astronomer, and poet was renowned in his own country and in his own time for his scientific achievements, but is chiefly known to English-speaking readers through the translation by the English writer Edward Fitzgerald of a collection of his Rubaiyat (“quatrains”) in “The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam” (1859).