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"Privacy"; Kamrooz Aram's Solo Show at The Arts Club of Chicago

Author : Nafiseh Saleh Abadi

Reading Time : 3 Minutes

The Arts Club of Chicago hosted "Privacy," an exhibition of works by Kamrooz Aram (b. 1978, Shiraz), from April 5 to August 13, 2022. "Privacy" displayed a selection of the artist's works, including a variety of media such as murals, sculptures, and installations. Kamrooz left Iran with his family when he was eight years old. Therefore, he was educated in a completely different social and cultural context. However, his works involve various fields like painting, sculpture, installation, collage, and photography, with apparent signs of Iranian art themes.

Kamrooz Aram | Phantom Architect | 2022 | mahogany, steel, concrete and ceramic object | 127.64 × 30.48 × 30.48 cm

Kamrooz Aram attempts to question contradictions formed between painting and Sculpture, background and foreground, and public and private space. Botanical motifs in his works are inspired by his attitude toward decorative arts like carpet, pottery, or ceramics. In one of his works titled "Domestic Composition (Biruni/Andaruni)," he has put ceramic containers with imprinted botanical patterns on a shelf. The combination of painting and pottery has given the whole work a sense of a museum object and turned it into a sculpture or performance.

Works displayed at The Arts Club of Chicago are situated in the space in a way that the viewer faces a combination of other decorative objects like furniture, murals, etc. Such an installation of objects and artworks in the museum's space aims to emphasize their relationship regardless of their independent nature.

Besides the installation, the evident feature of the work is that, despite the artist's geographical distance from his homeland, his memories of it have not faded. "When the pond is still and the trees are reaching down and also reaching up, I'm reminded of palaces in Iran with reflecting pools," said Kamrooz.

Exhibiting the artist's works in the gallery's halls faced a similar kind of challenge. Looking at the images of the gallery's space, one can see the reflection of works on the smooth, polished surface of the floor, especially with the enormous paintings installed on the gallery's main walls and when the gallery is not crowded. Arabesque and motif-like stems of plants are doubled due to the reflection, just like what happens at the Chehel Sotoun palace in Isfahan. To intensify the reflection, the artist has installed the works close to the ground. Additionally, Kamrooz emphasizes that all works have been produced according to their exhibition space to make them reminiscent of pillars and reflection of motifs, the inner positive and negative spaces of which are reflected outside the tableaus.

During the formation of this project, Kamrooz Aram developed a close bond with geography and space that despite being miles away, has found an external equivalent where he lives now; somewhere in Wellfleet, a town in Massachusetts, that gave him the basic idea of this exhibition during his daily walks.

Kamrooz's artistic activity is an attempt to merge two separate artistic fields in a different space; a white canvas is in front of an artist who is thousands of miles away from his homeland, but his mental and visual supplies have helped him fill it with elements containing signs of ornamental patterns of ancient carpets and miniature paintings combined with cultural and historical elements of Western art. In some parts, the border between West and East is bold and obvious, while in other parts it requires an inner exploration.



  • www.kamroozaram.com/navigation
  • www.provincetownindependent.org/arts-minds/2022/05/11/a-public-exploration-of-privacy

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  • www.artsclubchicago.org