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Mirrored Reflections
Group Show

19 Jan - 27 Feb, 2022

Group Show


The art of the Islamic Revolution of Iran, particularly paintings and murals, are among the most significant works categorized under "social art" in the contemporary Iranian art. Traced back to the early 1970s and recognized as a field of critical, political and activist art, the protest art of that time was transformed into the "revolutionary art" with a new context with the outbreak of the Islamic Revolution.

Promoting the idea of socializing arts, the active artists of that period (1984-1974) embarked upon mingling a sort of narrative expressionism with the national, and sometimes mythological and religious themes (having had their origins in the Coffeehouse painting style). Accordingly, in addition to the expression and technique, the purposeful maintenance of traditions would take on an added importance. We should note, however, that the extant patterns, compositions and figures in some of such artworks is actually a reproduction of the revolutionary, socialistic murals in other countries whose typical examples would help us complete our study on this trend.///

The consequences of creative attempts by the artists in that decade, accompanied by matters such as painter's deep insight into the concept of society, commitment to opposition and the significance of leader's role as the national hero asserted substantial historical influence of the collective memory of Iranians. Therefore, the main idea of the present exhibition has been the formation of revolutionary art as "the collective" and the reflection of social developments of Iran with the aim of demonstrating the socio-political beliefs of artists as well as reviewing the socio-religious fight and opposition.

Manifested in different media (painting, photography, music, theater, literature), the revolution art movement is considered unique in the history of Persian art and it could be studied from viewpoints of semantics, aesthetics and sociology. Meanwhile, a recognition and examination of paintings as the representative of "visual language of the Revolution" is of great significance. Such artworks would help the current generation in improving a fair, clear understanding of historical events as well as the evolution of the Iranian contemporary visual arts.

The works of this exhibition are just a selection of the paintings and murals from that period compiled and organized according to the field of art historiography and art research. Incidentally, due to the short time between the outbreak of the Islamic Revolution and the Iran-Iraq War, and as to the inevitable connection between them, some examples of visual artworks relating to the issue of discourse changes have also been displayed in order to provide addressees with a better understanding of the social art and the following developments in Iran.

Curator: Kianoush Motaghedi


Installation view