Modern & Contemporary Middle East

New Iranian Artists in New York

By Roxane Zand

NEW YORK – For some years, two Iranians in New York have introduced the work of new Iranian artists to a public who rarely sees contemporary works from Iran - the art sold at auction mainly centres on modern masters. Roya Khadjavi and Massoud Nader act as a true primary market in discovering new talent and showcasing it to audiences in North America.

"For Your Eyes Solely" is a solo show by Ali Kourehchian whose sculptural configurations in the shape of masks, have already made a strong impression locally. The Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art has acquired pieces, and extensive press coverage has made the artist's work well-known in the region. An architect by training and profession, Kourehchian is adept at three dimensional representation of poetry and mysticism.

This particular show in NY urges the viewer to think of masks as the veil between truth and reality, the way mystic poets such as Rumi use layers of meaning to allude to what lies beneath words.  It also provokes us to think about our eyes looking out from beyond our masks. Do we all see the same world, through the same openings in a mask? Internal perceptions and constructs depend on the mind of the viewer on the inside.

Intricate and elaborate calligraphic masks that recall the elegance and mystery of the Venetian variety, yet also refer to early Islamic war masks, form an intriguing and thought-provoking exhibition. Not to be missed if you pass through New York before the end of May.

The exhibition is at:

Olga Wimmer Gallery
526 West 26th Street
Suite 310
New York NY 10001

Opening Reception: Wednesday 31 May, 6-9 pm
Ends Sunday June 11th

Curated by Massoud Nader & Roya Heidari

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