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Marshall artist discovered talents as teenager in Iran

Abstract transitionalist, Sima Amid Wewetzer, of Marshall, received her first art award at the tender age of 13 while she was living in her home country’s capital city, Tehran, Iran. It all began with a school project when she painted a T-shirt for a contest at her school. She won the contest and was swamped with requests from all the students in the school to paint a shirt for them. That painting competition led to an invitation to take part in a canvas painting competition, which she won and received an award.

“I was not what you would call your typical child growing up in Iran. I was born into a very privileged family, and my father had many connections with people in power, and my five brothers, three sisters and I were fortunate to have everything we needed and had a very rich life.

If that had not been so I would have not had the opportunities to study and develop my talent and love for art,” said Wewetzer.

In her late teen years she decided to come to the United States to study. She was required to pass a test at the college she was attending in her home land before she would be allowed to travel to the U.S. and enroll in college. Though many took such a test only six or seven passed and were on their way. Wewetzer enrolled in West Illinois University and remained there for one year. She then began to travel back and forth between Iran and the U.S. and gained her B.A. in the College of Translation. At the age of 28 she returned to the U.S. and decided she would remain here permanently. She began her residency in Los Angeles.

“I eventually ended up here in Marshall, and I love it here. I am so happy here, and it is such a supportive community of the arts. For several years I had a shop and fixed hair but all the while I worked at my art and continued to grow. I no longer have the shop and have turned the basement of my home into an art studio/gallery. And, I grow and grow in my art. My husband, Randy, has been the key to my success here in Marshall. He gets involved with every exhibition, like my mother did in Iran,” said Wewetzer.

“My love of art touched every part of my life, as you can see in my home, and if I want to add something to my house I don’t go out and buy it, I find the material and a way to make it. I will try anything and love putting different colors and textures together,” she said. Her love of art and her talent is evident in every aspect of her home which is a vibrant reflection of her and is alive with color and warmth. She recently completed an entire wall, which is the first thing one sees upon entering her home.

“I did this wall, but it took me almost a year to complete. For the most part, it was complete except for her shoes. I just couldn’t decide what material I wanted to use, so I left it for quite awhile and then suddenly there it was in my head, and I finished it quickly, and everyone seems to love it when they come in,” she said. The art wall is constructed of various art materials, including plaster, clay, lace, bread dough and paint. The title of the image of a life-size maiden in a yellow meadow is Loves Me Loves Me Not. It is named after another famous painting.

“I am very excited about 2015 because it will be the year that I will create a new technique never used by any other artist, and I am very excited to begin this work. There is a three-dimension technique, but I will take it to a new level. My next project is with science and the moon and Mars and will go to the fourth or fifth dimension. I am just crazy to get started on it. It is going to be a Boom!” she said.

She has been invited to a book signing at the Lyon County Library and at an art exhibition at SMSU. My art is featured in volume VI of International Contemporary Masters which was published by Despina Tunberg with Wide Art Book Publications.

“It is a great deal of work attending an exhibition. Many pieces have to be removed from their frames and rolled and protected from damage, and many of my pieces are quite large and must be framed up. Like going to New York for a show is exciting but exhausting. I have a special path to follow, not an easy path but a special path. I have been invited to participate in art exhibitions in Italy and Japan, but I must be very selective,” she said.

“I have a twin sister. We are identical twins, and she is a writer, a poet. I think we were born with the love of art in us. I remember as a small child when we would go to museums. I love to go to museums. I would stand and look at a painting, and I knew I was not supposed to but I wanted to reach out and touch it. The tips of my fingers would begin to tingle, and if I could just lightly touch it once, I would have a connection and  know how the artist created it. I use some tools, like brushes and spatulas, but my fingertips are my favorite tool. I used to use oil paints, but acrylic dries so much faster and gives me the chance to work when the creative feeling is there rather than wait hours for it to dry. I love it.

This picture is for my home country of Iran. It is a representation of a new year’s tradition; you see the lady and around her head are things we would set on the family table for new years: apples, fish, coins, garlic, flowers, Russian olives and a dish with grass growing in it. We would plant grass seed in a plate or dish and let it grow for 13 days and then we would take the matt of grass to the river and set it down gently so it would drift with the flow of the water. It was like a symbol of a good year and things that would grow and prosperity, kind of like all the things you would wish for in the spring that would be coming,” said Wewetzer.

Though there is an uncompleted life-size sculpture of a man resting on her work table many of her creations are made of objects that were useful objects in their former life, like a chandelier made of bangles, beads and deer antlers. Nothing is disposed of unless she is certain it has outlived all of its potential. In the gallery there sits a portrait of a mother and her baby. The materials used in creating it include a plastic milk jug, a soda can, discarded hunks of rubber, a jug lid, white birch tree bark and paint. An art piece might be hiding an old table, door or anything that can contribute to her idea.

“Everyone has been so supportive, and I am so happy to be associated with the Southwestern Minnesota Art Council. The support I have received from the council has been unbelievable,” said Wewetzer.

More information on this talented artist may be found at

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