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
Total Art Gallery of Dubai, in collaboration with Hewar Gallery of Saudi Arabia, presents the intrinsic works of legendary Arab artist, Bahram Hajou.
The paintings are known for their sensitive depiction of human beings and their innate loneliness through symbols and a continuity of motives that is as impressive as it is brilliant, potent with wisdom and understanding of human nature, and an ingenious flair with a paint brush. His peers have expressed much appreciation for Bahram's genius in translating a few strokes into a telling and poignant story.
A Syrian-born Kurd, Bahram's journey of realizing and expressing his full potential as an artist started as a child. From a very early age, the artist displayed flair and interest in art that was paralleled only by his love of classical and light music. It was music and his extremely strong views on the ultimate oneness of humanity that truly helped him bring out his fiery creative genius.
Displaying profound sensitivity and a very deep understanding and feelings for mankind, Bahram's works have won accolades for an enduring grace, depth of vision and tender strokes. Bahram left home at an early age and travelled widely. He is considered as the creator of a dramatic world of painting. His pictures seem unchangeable, almost as if the image of mankind seems to be a verdict. As Bahram travelled; he kept drinking in the overwhelming disparity in human kind yet, intelligently comprehending a unity. Passionate about colors and emotions, the gifted artist's enduring works display sensitivity and attention to detail that cannot be challenged.
Having observed different cultures and peoples from across the world, Bahram constantly strove to reinvent himself, both as a human being and an artist and tried to rise about it all to bring forth paintings that conveyed the independence and freedom he cherished, undulating in form and poignant with the compelling human tales. An extremely humble person, Bahram has witnessed several wars, and his focus is not so much in fame and fortune as it is in keeping on the task of communicating his constant internal and external struggle, and his appreciation of other's psyche, through his brilliant work.
Born in 1952, Bahram studied arts in Munster, Germany and has been living and working there for several years.