O Gallery presents “Dim Shape”, a collection of paintings, works on paper and sculptures by Elham Yazdanian (b. 1979 Tehran), marking the artist’s third solo show with the gallery.
In 2013, inspired by a verse by Rumi, addressing the veiled consciousness beneath the darkness and the inevitable changes during one’s lifetime, Elham Yazdanian began working on the collection on display as an open and completely personal project, taking advantage of diverse formal and technical experiences.
As the starting point of the collection, the cutout series can very well be the prologue to Elham Yazdanian’s world: it is essential to see how figures and buildings in found magazine photos are initially obscured and purposefully made more difficult to see through Yazdanian’s painting methods; these images resist both representation and easy interpretation. One has to wait for one’s eyes to adjust to the darkness before slowly traveling over the terrain of each image.///
These repetitive gates of darkness are also projected in the monumental sculptures in the collection, offering a disruption of hegemonic interpretations that leaves a negative space to be filled by the darkness itself - - a fiction of its own making.
Regardless of the medium, the world made by Yazdanian is gloomy and dim, overlaid with a black polish that is almost tenacious in texture. Darkness in the collection is multivalent: its obscuring power prevents viewers from immediately processing the whole. The shapes are dark, they seem as if they were captured in the daylight and processed in a way to represent the night in order to reveal how light plays even after dark.
Analogously, the details in each painting and the accuracy of scales and architectural features gives the paintings an almost photographic quality. Furthermore, the medium, processes and objects are forms of a potential insurrection of darkness against its traditional association with illumination and photography’s constant reproduction of the asymmetrical dichotomy between light and dark.