за проф. арх. Милка Близнакова (20.09.1927-04.11.2010).
на нейния колега и близък приятел
проф. арх. Humberto Rodriguez-Camilloni
Good Morning and welcome
to this special commemoration and celebration to the life of Milka Cherneva Bliznakov;
this known to some of her closest friends as Mimi and to some of others as Grande Dame of Blacksburg.
It’s hard to believe that she’s not with us. But I’m sure she’s listening and she’ll listen to us throughout this morning we’re going to be reminiscent and remembering some of the best moments with her.
I’d like to think of the day back in 1974 when Milka came to the interview by the late dean of architecture Charles Burcher. Dean Burcher was very well known for his extraordinary ability to discern quality of human beings. So, instantly he recognized that he was in the presence of a remarkable lady. And I’d like to think he would have said to himself: “This is the kind of woman teacher I desperately need on my side. If not, this is the kind of woman teacher I need by my side.”
And so it was - 27 years ago when my wife and I came to Blacksburg for the first time we would only need the exchange of a couple of words to come to verbalisation that, indeed, we were in a presence of a very special lady.
Throughout the years we were to develop, of course, a very lasting friendship. There was really much more than that for Milka very quickly came to be Aant Milka to my children, as I am sure she did to many of you and perhaps also becoming mother to some of you, to all of us.
So, all of us have
been touched in one way or another by the friendship and the love that Milka so
generously showered upon us.
… And many more that would like to be here with us but for some reason are not or could not be here with us today.
But we are very honoured to have with us Milka’s brother Dimiter, nephew John Martin and niece Joy Adelle that always made Milka very proud for Milka often used to say: “I have the best nephew and best niece in the world” – very typical of her words.
She lives behind an extraordinary rich legacy - her achieves as a practicing architect, as an architectural historian, as a scholar, as a teacher, are matter of record.
She left around the
world an incredible family of friends, colleagues, admirers.
If any of you would have traveled to any corner of the world, I’m sure you would have very soon met somebody that would have asked you about Milka: “How is Milka doing?”
She was indeed so popular that incredibly she had a chapel, the best chapel in the world, no doubt.
But I would like to speak just a few more words we are going to be, I’m sure, hearing from all kinds of experiences - from colleagues, from friends, from family, from students - the human quality of Milka that was truly exceptional, for she was, indeed, an extraordinary human being.
She spoke her mind. Did she ever speak her mind? But she stated the importance of speaking out for what you think, it is right. And she did speak outloдk what she believed in.
This she must have learnt from her childhood and I asked Dimiter who shared with us last night. This was a quality that she inherited from mama.
That we had in fact here in Blacksburg and perhaps many of you had the honor to meet her on occasion of the celebration of her 80th birthday.
Milka loved music. She supported the visual arts and that would be another statement for she supported and loved the visual arts and music with passion. So, no remembrance of her would be complete without music and this is going to be a big part of our program this morning. And it just so happens that three of her closest friends happened to be also musicians extraordinaire. So, we are going to hear from David Philips, from Nitza Kats and from Ken Holiday at the piano. They’re going to play a very special tribute to Milka’s memory.
As we remember her
this morning I would like you to think of two things to carry away with you.
One is this: on a clear day, when you see in the sky an extra humulous cloud or
two, to not be confused - this is Milka, having a pouph …
and at night you look up in the sky and you will see a new star shining bright, you’ll know that that is Milka shining upon us.
And she always will.
* * * *
През 2019 г. в каталога (на нем. и англ. ез.) към изложбата за българската архитектка Стефка Георгиева (1923-2004), организирана в Галерията "Рингтурм" във Виена
(съст.: Адолф Щилер, Виена; Анета Булант-Каменова, Виена-София),
бе включен и откъс от монографията на Милка Близнакова "Bulgarian Art and Architecture of the Twentieth Century. The Development of a Regional Culture" (Българските изкуство и архитектура през ХХ век. Развитие на регионална култура), Blacksburg, VA, USA - Sofia, Bulgaria, 1989-2007
(Ed.: Ljubinka Stoilova/ ред.: Любинка Стоилова).
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