Middle Eastern Art in Hong Kong

Launch Slideshow

Sotheby’s first exhibition of Middle Eastern art in Asia will present works by two iconic artists: Reza Derakshani and Alfred Basbous. Guest-curated by international art advisors in association with Sophia Contemporary Gallery and the Alfred Basbous Foundation. The show will provide Asian collectors a unique opportunity to discover the work of these outstanding artists, whilst introducing Middle Eastern art to an even wider global audience.Click ahead to browse the highlights.

Two Moderns from the Middle East: Reza Derakshani and Alfred Basbous

Hong Kong | 3–17 November

Middle Eastern Art in Hong Kong

    Reza Derakshani, Gold Hunt, 2017
    Reza Derakshani was born in Sangsar, in the northeast of Iran. Following his first solo exhibition at the renowned Ghandriz Gallery in Tehran at the tender age of nineteen, Reza Derakshani has held more than 50 solo shows, group shows, performances and numerous Art Fairs, among other things. In 2010 the Hunting Gold was exhibited at the Hope! exhibition in France alongside works by Hirst, Murakami and others. Click ahead to browse the highlights.

    Reza Derakshani, Silver Hunt, 2017
    Derakshani’s life work is impressive in its range of media and techniques, his passionate unleashing of creative energies through multiple venues of artistic expression including sculpture and photography and significantly music. Equally rich and provocative are Derakshani’s explorations of the conceptual and philosophical preoccupations of his time and place.

    Reza Derakshani, Pink Hunt, 2017
    For over four decades, Reza has been experimenting with textured, layered, generously brush-worked canvases. Layers of mixed-pigment material such as oil, acrylic, gold and watercolours or gouache have been glued together in sections, and sometimes manipulated as large sheets into stiffly-moulded yet flowing forms. He builds complex textured surfaces with thick layers of dark and pasty roof tar, topped with further layers of transparent colours which simply dazzle in the full range of the chosen palette, particularly in the reds.

    Reza Derakshani, Day Hunt, 2017
    As registers of Reza Derakshani’s expansive store of creativity, the originality of his artistic vision, and the musical energy of his paintings, the visual-musical interplay can also be tapped in order to locate his art within the parameters of a cultural mentalité that is historically and deeply Persian, although not uniquely so.

    Reza Derakshani, Shirine And Khosrow, 2017
    Other times he inscribes his compositions with a line of mystic poetry in a hand that is clearly well-trained calligraphically, and yet occasionally distorted just as in the main visual field. As an abstract painter he has an uncanny ability to create, in certain compositions, a foreground and a background, thereby suggesting depth and developing a narrative at the most unexpected moments.


  • Alfred Basbous, Caring Figure, 1982, Bronze
    Son of the mountains and of Rachana, the village he has made mythical, Alfred Basbous, make the toughest, most defiant materials sing and bend them to his will and his inspiration. Nothing can resist him, not even bronze or marble.

  • Alfred Basbous, Syrene, 1998, Bronze
    Bronze, smooth, dark and glossy, rivals the living chill of milky marble, with its imperceptible veins. To accompany this set of statues; set free from the imagination, from chisels and mallets, from alloys of copper and tin, from the rocks bursting forth from the belly of the earth and exposed by patient, expert hands shaping, planning, sanding and polishing.

  • Alfred Basbous, Femme Assise, 1983, Bronze
    Artist use sketches and proofs drawn in charcoal to catch an idea in flight, pin down an image seen in the mind’s eye, glimpsed somewhere between dream and reality. A series of sketches to illustrate and bear witness to a creative thought unfolding. Engendering an enchanted and enchanting universe in which woman, nature, a bestiary and snatches of Phoenician history are pivotal points both static and in motion.

  • Alfred Basbous, Syrene, 1985, Bronze
    Working in the tradition of sculptors such as Jean Arp, Constantin Brâncuși and Henry Moore, Alfred Basbous explores the potential of noble materials such as bronze, wood and marble to express the sensuality and purity of the human form. This aversion towards frivolous and meaningless embellishments echoes his own philosophy of simplicity and earnestness.

  • Alfred Basbous, Woman Nude, 2001, Marble
    In the tradition of the greatest names, the sculptor has set out to find his own path and his own voice – unique and captivating, to speak of the simplicity and the grandeur of a human journey. Elegant, still subject to the eternal values, but far from the madding crowd, always dignified, always triumphant.  


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