Art And Culture

Contemporary Art Annual at Niavaran

Contemporary Art Annual at NiavaranContemporary Art Annual at Niavaran

The 6th edition of Contemporary Art Annual, a project by Persbook Art Center, was launched on Friday (April 15) at Niavaran Cultural Center’s gallery No.1 in Tehran.

Earlier in September 2015, the center had issued a call to artists worldwide to submit their works in all artistic mediums, from film and digital art to painting, drawing, installation and sculpture. Among the submitted artworks, 17 made it to the exhibition, the Persian art magazine ‘Tandis’ reported.

According to the founder and chief designer of the event, Neda Darzi, the expo is in two categories: competition section of selected artists and solo exhibition of works.

All the items were selected by the jury comprising Los Angeles-based Iranian-born transmedia artist Alysse Stepanian, Assistant Professor of Art History at the University of Massachusetts Pamela Karimi, and veteran painter and graphic designer Behrang Samdzadegan.

‘Art and Anthropocene in the Middle East’ is the theme of this year’s competition, said Darzi. The Anthropocene is a proposed epoch that begins when human activities started to have a significant global impact on Earth’s geology and ecosystems.

In her widely-read book ‘The Silent Spring’ (1962), American biologist Rachel Carson brought attention to the devastating consequences of human intervention in nature. Many (Western) artists imaged and imagined the possibility of a better world, wherein human beings were divorced from their natural settings. Others contemplated the ways in which humans can live with nature in a more sustainable way.

“Considering the massive exploitation of natural resources (fossil fuels) in the Middle East, neglect of the issue by the artist community cannot be justified. How should an artist respond to the indiscriminate human manipulation of the diverse environments of the Middle East?” says a statement on the website of the event.

Conferences on environmental art will be held during the week-long edition attended by prominent Iranian art figures Behnam Kamrani and Samadzadegan.

In the closing ceremony, slated for April 23, the selected winners will be conferred Persbook membership and certificate of appreciation. In addition, written and oral review of the selected works will be provided by the review committee and the best artworks will be displayed on the online portal of Persbook.

Furthermore, the catalogue of the exhibition, to be published as a book by Nazar publishing house, will be unveiled on the closing day.