The project Honarmandan – An encounter that united two artists

The project “Honarmandan – female artists” emerged during the summer of 2020. Trigger and financial support was the promotion “Kultur.Sichtbar” of the city of Chemnitz. The artistic exchange has now been running for several months and can be followed on various channels on the Internet.

Drawing of a woman from behind. In front of her lays a long and windy way.
Pariya Masoudi Moghadam illustrates the theme of flight.

The two met in 2019 at the “Neustart Deutschland” workshop at the Fortbildungszentrum Chemnitz, where Stephanie was booked as a live illustrator. Pariya was a participant and approached her afterwards. She explained that she was also an illustrator and showed her work. She invited Stephanie to her home, cooked and both were so excited about their encounter that they agreed to get together with their work as well.

So now, a few months later, the time had come. They sat across from each other in Stephanie’s studio at Sonnenberg. Pariya with a huge bouquet of flowers and cautious questions and Stephanie, with a few loose ideas that she laid out in front of Pariya. Pariya asked her to speak more slowly and not too complicated. She completely forgot about that. So impatience aside and get gentle!

Pariya Masoudi Moghadam sits at a table. In front of her are flowers and paper with drawings.

Both of them found a level and thought about topics for which they drew a picture from meeting to meeting, from week to week. Most of the time they sat together for two hours, ate, laughed and talked – of course also a lot about things that were going on at the time.

Pariya led a workshop in the summer, prepared her own exhibition, made a film as a commissioned work… there was a lot going on! Stephanie showed Pariya how to write calculations for projects and often felt herself like a student who deals with Iran for the first time. It made her listen.

At their second meeting, they picked food as a topic. Pariya and her husband told Stephanie about the many different types of bread in Iran and how they are baked. And when Pariya pronounced the name of a Persian dish, Stephanie recorded her words with her smartphone and practiced repeating them herself. They also chatted about the country’s history and geography, not to mention Pariya’s love of calligraphy.

Stephanie’s original ideas for the joint project changed over time. It was still unclear how they could publish it. Will it be a diary of some sort? From whose point of view? Stephanie made a start, initially typing texts from her perspective for the tumblr blog. For the Instagram posts, Pariya joined in, preparing texts to accompany the drawings, on topics like flight or food. She, like Stephanie, wrote in her native language. Her husband Amin translated her lines into English and Stephanie, with the help of Google, eventually to German.

Posting on Instagram brought new drive. Stephanie discovered other Persian illustrators and their work along the way and continued to explore Persian culture. As part of the funding, the project has now ended, but Pariya and Stephanie have decided to just keep going – maybe change the rhythm of time, draw on themes, give each other space and support, and see where the journey goes.

Pariya Masoudi Moghadam about herself:

I was born in Ghazvin, a historical city and the capital of calligraphy in Iran.
Since my childhood, I have had a special interest in art and design, until today. I therefore pursued my education single-mindedly in this direction and obtained my bachelor’s degree in graphic design and illustration. In addition, I have been artistically active at many universities, schools and art institutes and could also already exhibit my paintings.

I work with different techniques in my works, such as oil paint, acrylic paint, watercolor, colored pencil, pastel, scratchboard, collage, patina and copperplate. I also have multiple techniques in each of these works to make different age groups more familiar with the visual arts.

Since 2018, I have been living in Chemnitz, Germany. Here I started my work as a graphic designer and I write for Horizont magazine on the side. In 2019 year I participated in an art exhibition of Dialog Art in the Adult Education Center Chemnitz. I also implemented a project to design a cultural calendar for the women’s center Lila Villa. In the summer and fall of 2020, I teach visual arts for children at the Chemnitz House of Cultures.

It is my big goal to bring Persian art closer to interested people. I also want to combine different techniques and styles to create delightful aspects in art.

Stephanie Brittnacher about herself:

I have always loved to draw. We used to move around a lot and while my surroundings kept changing, drawing became a kind of leitmotif in my life. I always wanted to do something professionally with it and I was lucky to learn about communication design studies in Mainz through a friend, because illustration was also part of it.

I had great professors and my diploma thesis was a children’s book, which I also wrote myself. After my studies I first worked in an agency as a web designer, but actually I knew that I was rather destined for drawing and also wanted to work more freely. Another move was in the offing, this time to Chemnitz, and with this step I became self-employed.

Since then I draw for companies, clubs and for my city. And again I was lucky, and was paired with a friend, an author. With her, I published my first children’s book in 2017 and am now working on my fifth.
For my paintings, I like to try new techniques and get inspired by other illustrators. I guess you can really evolve throughout your life and I wish to still be doodling at 90, maybe a little shaky on a (probably digital) piece of paper.


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