Photo exhibit traces Spanish diplomat’s mission to Iran in 17th century 

October 28, 2017 - 18:47

TEHRAN – An exhibition of photos by Manolo Espaliu tracing the route to Iran followed by the Spanish diplomat Garcia de Silva Figueroa (1550–1624) during the 17th century opened Thursday at the Extremaduran and Latin American Museum of Contemporary Art (MEIAC) in Badajoz, Spain. 

The opening ceremony of the exhibition titled “Travel to Persia” was attended by Espaliu, MEIAC director Franco Antonio Dominguez and Iranian Cultural Attaché Alireza Esmaeili.

Speaking at the ceremony, Dominguez expressed his hope that the photo exhibit helps Spanish visitors become better acquainted with the history and civilization of Iran.

Espaliu praised Iran for its amazing historical monuments and its most hospitable people, and said that he has accumulated the collection over 10 journeys to Iran.

Maria Garcia from the Department of Information and Communication of the University of Extremadura in Badajoz was also among the guests at the ceremony.

Silva Figueroa was sent as King of Spain Philip III’s ambassador to the court of Shah Abbas Safavi (1588-1629) and stayed in Persia from 1617 until 1619, forging an alliance with Shah Abbas against the growing power of the Ottoman Sultanate.

The year 2017 marks the 400th anniversary of the fascinating Persian journey by Figueroa.

Figueroa visited many Iranian cities such as Shiraz, Kashan, Isfahan, Qazvin and Qom. He also left an account of his mission to Persia in a manuscript, which is preserved at the National Library of Spain in Madrid.

Photo: Naqsh-e Rustam, an ancient site located in Fars Province, taken by Manolo Espaliu in April 2016