A group of young Iranian artists will be displaying their artworks at the 1x1 Art Gallery in Al-Qouz, Dubai in an exhibition opening on February 22. The show has been curated by the Iranian-based curator and artist representative Vida Heydari.
Paintings, sculptures, drawings and photographs created by 10 young Iranian contemporary artists will go on display at the group exhibition. Artists include Amirali Ghasemi, Kambiz Sabri, Katayoun Karami, Kimia Rahgozar, Mahta Saghafi, Mohsen Sadeghian, Niloofar Rahnama, Samira Alikhanzadeh, Sara Abbasian and Taha Heydari.
Iran has regularly been in the news headlines for its political and religious activities and its social issues and has remained a country full of subjects throughout its history but Heydari says her show has no social, religious or political connections. "In an attempt to practice freedom of expression, the show has left it to the artists to decide what thought provoking ideas they would like to show hence the title, No Subject." says Heydari who has only focused on artists living and working in Iran for this exhibition.
Browsing through the works of these 10 artists one can see a reflection of the current situation in Iran. The works are complex yet have maintained a beautiful esthetic and one can see the poetic side and sensitivity of Iranian people in them. The overall aura of the exhibition is dreamy and mysterious with a hidden power.
Amirali Ghasemi will be unveiling his new "Deconstructing White" series of digital photographs and graphics. Deconstructing certain objects, he is inviting us to unwind and find practical solutions against violence.
Mattresses, once a place for sweet dreams, love making and peace, have become cots of thorns and worries in Kambiz Sabri's works. Dry and non-resilient even childhood memories have taken a new shape, filled with screaming voices wanting to erupt and let loose. Yet still not having lost the very essence of purity, his sculptures send us a message of hope that change is not so unattainable. Coming out of their confined self-made spaces, the men in Sabri's works are finding their way to new horizons and reaching their dreams.
Katayoun Karami's work is about breaking certain dogmatic behaviors. She is being the change she wants to see in the world by breaking her own image.
Kimia Rahgozar's silhouette of faces and bodies in waiting, all shot on one negative without manipulation, depict men and women in anticipation and uncertainty. One can feel their blank gazes without seeing their eyes.
Masculinity and femininity, childhood and adulthood, chaos and tranquility all inter-exist in Mahta Saghafi's imaginary wonderlands, bizarre toys and bodies brilliantly drawn up with exquisite choice of colors.
Mohsen Sadeghian's boxes depicting days and perhaps years of our lives clearly show the complexity of the artist's mind. "Love and Rage" is a story of conflict with hostility and war being a dominant and constant element and love and humanity trying to find its place. The blade-like figures that sometimes reminisce the poetic quills, at times are in an attempt to cut up the organic bodies which are trying to live through the hazy and dusty backgrounds of their environment and at times provide a smooth ride. One is not bound to find a conclusion to this battle through Sadeghian's work.
Niloofar Rahnama's children drawn on MRI papers, trying hard to illuminate their play, find it a struggle as the blue skies have been replaced by smog and gray. The playground is a diseased environment that one cannot escape from. But these toy-like beings are still alive and have not given up hope on healing. Her work is a portrayal of the polluted minds and air of today's society and our lost dreams and plays.
Samira Alikhanzadeh looks for herself in old family pictures where she strategically has placed pieces of mirrors on the eyes of the people. Strangers or known, they each show her a part of herself unfamiliar to her at times. She reminds herself over and over again that we are each other's mirrors and one can see his own reflection in another person's eyes. She also questions the very idea of us carrying the past generations in our DNA and genes. And the story will go on.
The symbol of strength and courage, the eagle, has been reduced to bones and crucified in Sara Abbasian's marker drawings. It is difficult to capture the liveliness of these seemingly dead species in the pictures. One must see these works from close up.
Taha Heydari's paintings are about a dream of a warm conversation taken place in a cold city. A city, that although preserving its esthetics and identity, is frozen in time and cracking on the surface. The people of his dream are indifferent and oblivious of their surroundings but their conversations are hot and pulsating. Has this dream been going on for too long or is time man-made? Can we turn back time?