Ivan Marazov

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Ivan Rusew Marazow ( Bulgarian Иван Русев Маразов ; born March 15, 1942 in Pirne , Aytos , Burgas Oblast ) is a Bulgarian art historian , cultural scientist and politician of the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), and was both Minister of Culture and a candidate in the 1996 presidential elections.

He is particularly interested in the Thracians .


Art historian and cultural scientist

After attending school, Marazov studied at the " Ilya Efimovich Repin " art institute in Leningrad , which he graduated in 1967. He then became a research assistant at the Art History Institute in Sofia and was its director from 1988 to 1991. He also worked between 1969 and 1989 as deputy editor-in-chief of the trade journal Izkustwo ( Изкуство / art ) and received the 1975 Critics' Prize from the Association of Visual Artists .

Marazov, who initially obtained a doctorate in art history in 1976, dealt in his art-historical and cultural-scientific work in particular with the Thracians and published, among other things, specialist literature on topics such as the Thracian grave of Kazanlak or the cemetery of Varna . In the following years he also worked as a curator of exhibitions on Thracian culture, for example in Japan in 1979 and 1994 and in the USA in 1998 and 1999.

In 1985 he received the Art Prize of the Association of Visual Artists and in 1986 he received a Philosophiae Doctor ( Ph.D. ). Marazow, who has been organizing a seminar on myths, art and folklore since 1985, became a member of the Accademia delle Arti del Disegno in Florence in 1988 and was editor-in-chief of Orpheus magazine in 1990 and 1991 . He then took over a chair as professor at the Department of Cultural History at the established 1991 New Bulgarian University .

Culture minister and presidential candidate

After the collapse of communism , Marazov became involved in the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) and was for some time deputy minister of culture in the first post-communist government of Bulgaria under Prime Minister Dimitar Popov in 1991. In 1995 he became head of the Department of Cultural History at the New Bulgarian University and held this position until 2006. In 1996 he was honored with the Art Prize of the Academy of Sciences and a member of the Salanzara Cultural Institute in Paris .

On June 10, 1996, he was appointed as the successor to the composer Georgi Kostow by Prime Minister Schan Widenow as Minister of Culture in his cabinet, to which he was a member until February 13, 1997.

The hitherto largely unknown Marazov achieved national fame when he became the presidential candidate of the BSP after the original applicant and then Foreign Minister Georgi Pirinski was not allowed to run due to a court decision due to his birth in the USA.

He saw himself as one of the intellectuals like Václav Havel who had taken on political leadership after the collapse of communism. In the election campaign, unlike officials of his party, he preferred casual clothes, although at party events he recalled dates from the history of the Bulgarian Communist Party and spoke about the low prices in Bulgaria before 1989 and the disappearance of the Soviet market for Bulgarian industrial products. Ultimately, in his election campaign under the motto “Together for Bulgaria”, he tried the difficult task of addressing both target groups of the BSP: private companies on the one hand and older voters who valued the security of the old one-party system on the other.

In the first ballot on October 27, 1996, Marazov came second behind the candidate of the Union of Democratic Forces (Bulgarian Съюз на Демократичните сили ) and subsequent election winner, Petar Stoyanov , with 27 percent of the vote, while Stoyanov received 44 percent. In the subsequent runoff election between the two on November 3, 1996, Stoyanov was 60 percent clearly ahead of Marazov, who received 40 percent of the vote, so that Stoyanov succeeded Schelju Schelew as president .

In 2008 it became known that Mazarov had worked under the code name Librarian ( Библиотекара ) from 1974 to 1988 as an agent for the State Security Committee .


  • Albrecht Djurer. Epochi obrazi šediovri. Sofia 1972.
  • Vera Lukova. Sofia 1972.
in German language

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