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‘Creation’, 2012, by Ali Banisadr
‘Creation’, 2012, by Ali Banisadr

3 Iranian Masterworks at Sotheby's Dubai Exhibition

3 Iranian Masterworks at Sotheby's Dubai Exhibition

Sotheby’s held its biggest-ever art exhibition in Dubai on Thursday, September 29, ahead of the opening of its office in the city. The show included modern works by artists from the Middle East and South Asia, as well as historical treasures from the Islamic world.
The exhibition showcased highly sought-after masterpieces by celebrated artists from the region, including three renowned Iranian artists. The exhibit was accompanied by a series of talks and guided tours. The works will be offered for sale at Sotheby’s London, as part of a week dedicated to the 'Art of the Middle East and India' from October 14-20.
"The interwoven artistic traditions of multiple continents from the 9th century to the present day are represented in the upcoming week which will include our bi-annual sale of 20th Century Art: Middle East, alongside our traditional sale of arts of the Islamic world and modern & contemporary South Asian Art," the auction house said on its website, sothebys.com.
Iranian artists present at the auction are: Ali Banisadr, with his 2012 work 'Creation', (estimated $155,000-195,000); nonagenarian Monir Farmanfarmaian, 92, with her 'Variations on Hexagon of Octagon Mirrors' created in 2005 (estimated $155,000-195,000); Manoucher Yektai, with his 1968 'Untitled', (estimated $50,000-80,000).
The work of internationally acclaimed artist Ali Banisadr, 40, is heavily influenced by his childhood experiences in the Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988). His intoxicating canvases are dominated by intricate fantastical abstract landscapes that convey something of the chaotic violence he witnessed, artdaily.org reported. Banisadr is a contemporary artist who currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.
Drawing on both eastern and western artistic traditions, Banisadr’s work has developed through a prism of art historical references - recalling the complexity of Persian miniatures, the wide-ranging landscapes of the Flemish Old Masters and abstract expressionism. Building on this, Creation is rendered in the rich lavender and grey colors often associated with miniatures from Shahnameh (The Book of Kings), the famous long epic poem by the renowned Persian poet Ferdowsi.

  Traditional Craft and Western Abstraction
Monir Farmanfarmaian’s works have long met with international acclaim, most recently with her recent retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum in New York in 2015. Farmanfarmain’s oeuvre brings together the decorative elements of Iranian traditional craft with western abstraction - in playful yet poignant homage to Islamic geometry and the ancient roots of Iranian culture. This timeless yet contemporary work is one of the most exquisite and colorful to appear at auction.
Untitled is an important imposing still-life by the 93-year-old Manoucher Yektai.
Yektai established himself among the leading artists of New York in the 1950s, mingling with renowned Abstract Expressionists such as Rothko, De Kooning and Pollock. A gifted poet, he had a pioneering spirit and was determined to forge his own path. His paintings are a testament to this power of color, visual brilliance and use of paint - as he brought to life a Still Life in a way that was completely his.
Indeed, Yektai was the first Iranian to use layered paint and impasto in this way. His paintings have been described as ‘sculptured poems’, with a profound lyricism running through his body of work, Art Daily reported.

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