Art And Culture

Derakhshani’s Works in London, St. Petersburg

Derakhshani’s Works in London, St. PetersburgDerakhshani’s Works in London, St. Petersburg

Works of the contemporary Iranian artist Reza Derakshani was recently on display in London and St. Petersburg.

Titled 'The Breeze at Dawn', Derakshani's works were showcased at London’s Sophia Contemporary Gallery from May 26-July 25, as well as the State Russian Museum in St. Petersburg May 25-August 1, Honaronline reported.

The exhibitions surveyed Derakshani’s career to date and included works from a number of continuing series, including 'Hunting', 'Pomegranate' and 'Garden Party', as well as two large paintings from a new, previously unexhibited 'Calligraphy' series.

Born in a village in North Khorasan Province, Iran, Derakshani, 64, is a painter, poet, musician, and performance artist whose painting is grounded in Iranian artistic traditions and influenced by the western abstract expressionist styles. His colorful, bold, and dynamic art lies somewhere between abstraction and figuration.

Commenting on the exhibition, Alexander Borovsky, Head of the Department of Contemporary Art at the State Russian Museum, said: "We decided to exhibit an Iranian artist for two reasons. Firstly, the ancient Iranian culture is well-known in Russia. It has been a part of our cultural tradition ever since the 19th century. Secondly, we were excited by the thought of being one of the first national museums to exhibit work from this territory," quoted him as saying.

  Apolitical Artist

On choosing Derakshani's works for the exhibit, Borovsky said, "His generation has been through all sorts of turmoil. Reza is not a political artist, not at all, but the seismic waves of this civilization’s troubles are hidden ‘inside’ his artworks".

Derakshani graduated from the University of Tehran in 1976. He continued his studies at the Pasadena School of Art in California, and returned to Iran to teach at the University of Tehran. A young prodigy, he held his first solo show at the age of 19 in Tehran. His works have been presented in gallery shows and museum exhibitions all over the world. They have been among many public art collections including the British Museum, London; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York and the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art.

Derakshani has also performed as a musician in numerous museums and festivals such as the Brooklyn Museum and the Montreux Jazz Festival among others.

Sophia Contemporary is a new gallery showcasing contemporary art of the Middle East. The gallery aims to pioneer a new generation of emerging artists from the region with a view to provide them with a platform on the international stage.