Visual Dialogues | The Book of Kings | Shirin Neshat & Fereydoun Ave | March 2019
Secret of Words
Mehran Mohajer & Sadegh Tirafkan
Total Arts Gallery at the Courtyard and Massoud Nader Present exhibition of Photography by Sadegh Tirafkan with support of Silk Road Gallery this exhibition is accompanied by photographs of Mehran Mohajer Sadegh Tirafkan is a persevering artist who navigates through time and culture in search of his place and identity as an Iranian man in the contemporary world. The medium of photography has become his main platform to construct powerful visual plays, using a combination of elements that he seasons sufficiently with symbolism.
The significance of symbolism throughout Tirafkan’s body of work comes from his Persian root in which direct dialogue is rarely used, but frequently replaced by symbolic languages. How do you inform a culture that has three thousand years of history, rich in tradition and essentially a homogenous and male dominated society? Tirafkan expresses his concerns through images of numerous self-portraits and portraits of friends. He once said, "I began photography by recording what surrounded me. Now I take what is around me in the studio and make it into what I see through the prism of my life and culture." Tirafkan poses himself and others in the studio time after time to explore the meaning of being a contemporary Iranian. Blending tradition, history and memory, he recreates visually compelling scenes that build visceral connection to his ancient country. And this is where the strength and beauty of Tirafkan's work lie.
In reinventing and revisiting Iranian tradition he is also criticizing and challenging his ancestors' long-standing authority. In spite the highly eloquent appearances; I see two hidden trends in his work, which the artist has perhaps introduced even without realizing it: a theatrical staging of all the historic drama of his country, all the painful events of which he experienced intensely, and a discreet journey towards a spirituality which emanates from his whole vision. Here, Tirafkan surreptitiously rejoins the mystical quest which remains, whether we like it or not, the key-stone of any metaphysical edifice of the Iranian world. Born in Iran in 1965, Tirafkan trained as a photographer at the University of Fine Arts in Tehran. Since the late 1990’s he has participated in numerous solo exhibitions and group shows, in Tehran, Paris and New York.
Tirafkan’s work offers an eloquent meditation on modern Iranian man’s relationship to his past and on his search for a meaningful identity in the present. Identity, history and memory have been central concerns in the work of non-western artists since the era of colonialism. Tirafkan, frequently using himself as a model, revisits and reinvents these themes in his series of enigmatic yet visually compelling photographs. He uses words and symbols to communicate with the audience and
Abstract & Lanscape
A. Mohseni was born in 1960, in Kermanshah west of Iran. He started painting with Master Rahim Navesi before moving to Tehran. He held his first one-man show in 1994 and has come a long way from his humble beginnings. Landscape, traditional life and nature were always his main subjects to paint and after moving to UAE he found this passion in the local scenery. T
his exhibition would be an exceptional one in Mohseni’s career since he is entering a new period after 10 years of professionally painting landscapes and still life witch is still the close to Mohseni’s heart in a different way. Mohseni has participated in more than 40 solo and group exhibitions in Iran including Tehran Contemporary Art Museum, Australia, Kuwait and the UAE. Mohseni has won a special award from Tehran Contemporary Art Museum as the best Artist of the year in 1996. Mohseni has published 2 books, which are: 1. Nature in the painting of Abdol Hossein Mohseni 2. Painting of Abdol Hossein Mohsenis He is working on two new books at present.
TOTAL ARTS GALLERY
at the Courtyard
Zayed University Faculty
An exhibition of art and design work by a group of artists that are also faculty at Zayed University.
The artists in the exhibition are Neil Chowdhury, Jason DeMarte, Todd DeVriese, Terence Dowse, Françoise Durese, Russell Hamilton, Chae Lee, Heather Muise, Karen Oremus, Michael Rodriguez, Thomas Tucker, and Selma Tufail.
The variety of media that the artists are displaying in the exhibition includes large format photography, digital photography, graphic design, painting and drawing, collage and printmaking.
Participating Artists information:
Neil Chowdhury has taught in the past at the College for Creative Studies, in Detroit, Michigan, as well as worked as a creative photographer for Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan.
Selma Tufail has been an instructor at Zayed University for the last six years. She has taught in the areas of painting and drawing, art education courses, and professional practices for artists and designers in the UAE.
Françoise Durésé received her Master of Fine Arts degree from Temple University’s Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She has exhibited widely, from Mannheim, Germany, to the Capolavori Gallery, in Seattle, Washington.
Heather Muise's area of expertise is printmaking, and has exhibited at Sharjah Art Gallery, the University of Northern Illinois, and the University of Alaska.
Jason P. DeMarte received his Master of Fine Arts degree in Photography and Visual Design from the Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado. He has worked as a Computer Visualization Technology specialist, producing animated works seen on the WB and UPN television networks in the United States.
Chae Ho Lee is an educator and working design professional. He has worked for a number of prestigious and award winning Design Studios and Advertising agencies in the Pacific rim and New York City. Mr. Lee also served as Art Director for the Asia Society a NGO with offices internationally that promotes Asian art, education, culture, issues and business relations.
Thomas J. Tucker has worked professionally as the Head of the web development, multimedia and video production at Image Source Creative, in Chicago, Illinois. He has been a recipient of the Joan Mitchell Foundation fellowship, and exhibited at the Aaron Packer Gallery and the Contemporary Art Workshop in Chicago.
Michael Ben Rodriguez has served as a consultant to the Ohio Historical society, in the restoration and recreation of Native American artifacts.
Terence Dowse's artwork centers on the development of creative work in the areas of painting, drawing and printmaking.
Russell Hamilton has also been an artist in residence at the Studio Museum In Harlem, New York City; the Pratt Fine Arts Center in Seattle, Washington; and worked as an artist in residence in the Seattle Public Schools system.
Karen Oremus is an artist that works primarily in the medium of printmaking. Her artwork has been shown in galleries and museums internationally, such as Canada, the United States, Italy, Croatia and England.
Todd DeVriese's professional work encompasses traditional media such as collage, painting and sculpture, as well as electronic media. His artwork has been shown in places such as The Lowe Gallery, Atlanta, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Art Museum, and the University of Akron.