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September 27, 2021

Portrait-photographs of Eugen Ionescu exhibited at ICR New York

The Romanian Cultural Institute (ICR) New York hosts, starting today, the photo exhibition “Eugene Ionesco. The king of absurd never dies! Theatrical scenes and portraits photographed by Sorin Radu”. The exhibition is dedicated to the World Day of Theatre and features portrait-photos of Eugen Ionescu, now displayed in premier in America. The photos were made by Sorin Radu in 1978, during the conference held by the great playwright at New York University. The public also can see snapshots from various performances of plays by Ionescu, staged in Romania.
The 42 photographs of the exhibition are accompanied by a slideshow introducing the public to a selection of the vast artistic portfolio of Sorin Radu. The opening address of this exception exhibition, which will itinerate through USA and Canada, will be delivered by art historian and critic Dr. Eduard Andrei, who recently joined the team of programme coordinators at ICR New York.
Eugene Ionesco (born Eugen Ionescu, 26 November 1909 – 28 March 1994) was a Romanian playwright who wrote mostly in French, and one of the foremost figures of the French Avant-garde theatre. Beyond ridiculing the most banal situations, Ionesco’s plays depict in a tangible way the solitude and insignificance of human existence. The obsession of death is the great force that sets in motion the work of Eugen Ionescu, from the death of thought and language to the incomprehensible and inacceptable death of the human person.
Eugen Ionescu’s work made the subject of dozens of books and hundreds of studies, doctoral theses, international colloquia, symposiums and festivals. Critics usually distinguish two periods or manners of writing in the work of Ionescu. The first is represented by short plays, with elementary and mechanical characters, with an aberrant language and a largely comical character: The Bald Soprano, The Lesson, The Chairs and others. The second includes plays like The Killer, Rhinoceros, Exit the King etc.
Sorin Radu is among Romania’s most important photo artists and the best theatrical photographer of the country. Considered a master of light and shadow, “portraitist” Sorin Radu photographed politicians and presidents, from Ronald Reagan to Empress Farah Pahlavi of Iran, former King Mihai I of Romania and cultural personalities also.
Sorin Radu also photographed architectural subjects (L’Ambasciata D’Italia) and artworks for countless albums. Without his pictures, many Romanian painters of great value, including Tuculescu, Ghiata, Ciucurencu would not have had the art albums which introduced the public to their works. The most spectacular art volume containing photographs by Sorin Radu is “Vlaicu Ionescu – The Artist” by Doina Uricariu, issued by Universalia Publishers.

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