Surveyors of Persian Art Documentary Biography of Arthur Upham Pope & Phyllis Ackerman

Documentary Biography of Arthur Upham Pope & Phyllis Ackerman

Availability: In stock
Published: 1996
Page #: xxii + 658
Size: 9 x 12
ISBN: 4-89360-023-0
plates, bibliography, index

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Quick Overview

Arthur Upham Pope and his wife Phyllis Ackerman were pioneers in the study of the arts of Asia, with a paramount dedication to Persian art, history, heritage and culture, and its interrelations. Their efforts led to the establishment in 1925 of the American Institute for Persian Art and Archaeology, which later became the Asia Institute, in New York City and their unique programs of research, publications, exhibitions and educational instruction continued at the Institute and around the world until their retirement. The Asia Institute was to blossom once again after the reissue in 14 volumes of their monumental A Survey of Persian Art, which was first published in mammoth folio tomes by Oxford University Press in 1939, and reissued in 1964 under the direction of Jay Gluck, Asia Institute Books, with Meiji Shobo publishers of Japan and Ekram Manafzadeh of Iran. Later that year, during a State Visit to Iran, Professor Pope and Dr. Ackerman were formally invited to move The Asia Institute to Shiraz as an independent research center of publication and study, which would be housed in the Narenjestan, the beautiful hereditary compound of the Ghavam ul-Molk Shirazi. They accepted this generous offer and following months of planning, packing and organization, they returned permanently to Iran in 1966. Professor Pope and Dr. Ackerman were to spend their final days in Iran and upon their sad demise, they were provided with a magnificent mausoleum built in Professor Pope Park on the banks of the Zayandeh-Rud River in their beloved city of Isfahan. This unique tribute by Iran for two of America's pioneer scholars of Persian studies, and their remarkable achievements during lives dedicated to art, culture, beauty and heritage, is best told in the biography of Professor Pope and Dr. Ackerman, edited by Noël Siver and Jay & Sumi Gluck. In keeping with Professor Pope's last wishes that an authorized biography of their lives and times be made part of the permanent record of their magnum opus, this historic biography forms an unnumbered companion volume in the continuing tradition of A Survey of Persian Art.


Noël Siver

Conservator Noël Siver at work in dig house, June 2000.

Jay Gluck

Jay Gluck was born in Detroit, Michigan, the son of Lillian Mary Veronica Friar (Campbell-Phillips) and Harry Fitzer Gluck, a musician.[1] He spent his childhood in New York's East Side and also lived in his mother's hometown of Newcastle, England for a short while. At 17, he joined the US Navy Air Arm. After the war, he attended different universities before graduating in Archaeology and Middle East Studies from UC Berkeley in 1949. He attended the Asia Institute School for Asian Studies, where he completed a two-year MA degree

Gluck was responsible for the republishing of the 19 volumes of The Survey of Persian Art after the original printing plates were destroyed in London in the Second World War.

Invited to Iran in 1966 by his former professor and mentor Arthur Upham Pope, Jay moved his family to Shiraz from Japan to take up the post of Acting Director of the Asia Institute of the Pahlavi University. "n independent research center of publication and study." Gluck oversaw the restoration of the Narenjestan, the beautiful compound of the Ghavam ol-Molk Shirazi, where the Asia Institute was to be housed.

In 1970, Gluck returned with his family to Japan, but maintained a residence in Tehran until his departure forced upon him by changes in the Iranian political climate of 1979 and pending threats of revolution.

1996 saw the publication of, Surveyors of Persian Art: A Documentary Biography of Arthur Upham Pope & Phyllis Ackerman edited by Jay Gluck, Noël Siver and Sumi Hiramoto Gluck, the culmination of 30+ years of work in memory of his lifelong mentor and friend.

        In 1980, the first Kitano International Festival was held under the stewardship of Jay and his wife Sumi Hiramoto Gluck. The Festival held at the Kitano Jinja (Shrine) became renowned in the local community for bringing together people of all nationalities living in Kobe and for its generous contribution of proceeds to various international charities of the day. Jay was the first non-Japanese to receive Kobe City's "International" and "Hyogo Prefecture's 'Order of the Crane'" - their highest civilian awards.

Jay Gluck described himself to Contemporary Authors as a "dilettante of the type one laughingly refers to today as an Asian expert." He commuted quarterly between Iran and Japan from 1963–78, and said that he regrets not recording his impressions of the Iranian milieu just prior to the revolution in 1978: "It is a writer's rent for the space and air he takes up to see life more critically and record this, regardless of the immediate cost it threatens to--but usually does not--demand. Failure to do so costs more later and these payments never cease. The Zen adage that he who knows is silent and he who speaks out knows not is now seen to be but a sad commentary, and not the instructions for evidencing wisdom the young accolyte smugly took them for."

Gluck died on December 19, 2000 in California. 

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