Tehran, b.1980

Mehdi Farhadian

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Mehdi Farhadian’s paintings effectively integrate abstract and figurative features to create dreamlike, visually stunning landscapes and city views, inhabited by people and animals commonly engaged in enigmatic acts. His personal style fuses realistic, expressive and fictional narratives, providing a potent vehicle for his highly personal subject matters, which typically demonstrate his deep concern for Iranian contemporary history. This historical approach addresses political highlights and the everyday life experienced collectively. His characteristic iconography originates from sources such as the overflowing vegetation of the Khazar bank in Northern Iran, famous Iranian buildings, and recent historical figures. It is this orchestrated variety that makes up Farhadian’s entirely subjective original imagery.

His style of painting combines a great resect for details with a powerful handling of contrasting visual effects achieved by pouring and dripping...

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Biography

Mehdi Farhadian’s paintings effectively integrate abstract and figurative features to create dreamlike, visually stunning landscapes and city views, inhabited by people and animals commonly engaged in enigmatic acts. His personal style fuses realistic, expressive and fictional narratives, providing a potent vehicle for his highly personal subject matters, which typically demonstrate his deep concern for Iranian contemporary history. This historical approach addresses political highlights and the everyday life experienced collectively. His characteristic iconography originates from sources such as the overflowing vegetation of the Khazar bank in Northern Iran, famous Iranian buildings, and recent historical figures. It is this orchestrated variety that makes up Farhadian’s entirely subjective original imagery.

His style of painting combines a great resect for details with a powerful handling of contrasting visual effects achieved by pouring and dripping paint. By combining abstract and expressive techniques, his meticulous skill and particular subject matter have saved him a distinctive place in Iranian contemporary painting.

Mehdi Farhadian lives in an old, historically charged neighborhood in Tehran where he was born in 1980. He received his MA in painting at the Faculty of Fine Arts at the University of Tehran. Since 2010, he has taught painting and drawing at Elm o Farhang University, (Science and Culture), Tehran. Select exhibitions include ART CAPITAL (Comparison), Grand Palais, 2016, Paris (France); The Great Game, Iran Pavilion, La Biennale di Venezia 2015, Venice (Italy); Magic of Persia, Royal College of Arts, 2011, London (UK); and Iran Inside Out, Chelsea Museum, 2009, New York. In 2017 Farhadian had a residency with the Delfina Foundation in London. His work is in the permanent collection of the British Museum, among other institutions.

Artworks

11

Inflated Lion, 2018

RELATED CATEGORIES

Acrylic on Canvas / Acrylic Painting / City Scenes / Contemporary History / Everyday life / Historical Approach / Historical Buildings / Historical Figures / History / Iran / Iranian Contemporary History / Painting / Political Issues / Symbol / Symbolic Painting

CURRICULUM VITAE

Education

  • 2008

    MA, Tehran University, Tehran

  • 2005

    BA, Tehran University, Tehran

Solo Exhibitions

  • 2018

    Parade Square, Richard Taittinger Gallery, New York

  • 2016

    Sanctums of Decision, Richard Taittinger Gallery, New York

  • 2014

    Fires & Flowers, Mah Art Gallery, Tehran

Group Exhibitions

  • 2016

    ART CAPITAL (Comparison), Grand Palais, Paris

  • 2015

    Iran Art Now!, Setareh Gallery, Dusseldorf

  • The Great Game, Iran pavilion, Venice Biennale, Venice

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Curriculum Vitae

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Education

  • 2008

    MA, Tehran University, Tehran

  • 2005

    BA, Tehran University, Tehran

Solo Exhibitions

  • 2018

    Parade Square, Richard Taittinger Gallery, New York

  • 2016

    Sanctums of Decision, Richard Taittinger Gallery, New York

  • 2014

    Fires & Flowers, Mah Art Gallery, Tehran

  • 2013

    A Miracle for the Whole World, Lawrie Shabibi Gallery, Dubai

  • 2011

    BAHARESTAN, Mah Art Gallery, Tehran

  • 2009

    Untitled, Mah Art Gallery, Tehran

Group Exhibitions

  • 2016

    ART CAPITAL (Comparison), Grand Palais, Paris

  • 2015

    Iran Art Now!, Setareh Gallery, Dusseldorf

  • The Great Game, Iran pavilion, Venice Biennale, Venice

  • 2012

    The Sea, XVA Gallery, Dubai

  • 2011

    Magic of Persia, Royal College of Arts, London

  • Magic of Persia Contemporary Art Prize, Traffic Gallery, Dubai, UAE

  • 2010

    Landscape, Aaran Gallery, Tehran

  • To Paint Cinema, Mohsen Gallery, Tehran

  • 2009

    In the Mood for Paper, F2 Gallery, Beijing

  • Iran Inside Out, Chelsea Museum, New York

  • Iran on Paper, The Last 10 Years (from Fereydoon Ave’s “LAAL” collection), Aaran Gallery, Tehran

  • Iran/Painting/Now, Silk Road Gallery, Tehran

  • Iran Without Border, Galerie Almine Rech, Paris

  • Movers & Shakers in Contemporary Iranian Art, LTMH Gallery, New York

  • 2007

    Radical Drawing 1, Azad Art Gallery, Tehran

  • Radical Drawing 2, Tehran Gallery, University of Tehran, Tehran

  • Four Young Artists, Mah Art Gallery, Tehran

  • Song of Bulbuls (Nightingales) of the Oil Rich Regions, Museum of Contemporary Art, Isfahan, Iran

  • 2005

    Selected Contemporary Iranian Realist & Hyperrealist Art, Niavaran Cultural Center, Tehran

Bibliography

  • 2014

    KESHMIRSHEKAN, Hamid. Contemporary Iranian Art: New Perspectives. London: Saqi Books, 2014

  • GRIGOR, Talin. Contemporary Iranian Art: From the Street to the Studio. London: Reaktion Books, 2014

  • 2011

    HOMAYOUN EISLER, Maryam. Canvas, Vol. 7: April 2011

  • 2010

    KAMRANI, Behnam. “The Territory of Multicolour Fears: A Look At Mehdi Farhadian’s Work.” Art Tomorrow: Contemporary Art Quarterly, No. 2, Summer 2010

  • EIGNER, Saeb. Art of the Middle East: Modern and Contemporary Art of the Arab World and Iran. London: Merrell Publishers, 2010

  • 2009

    DOWNEY, Anthony, Hamid Keshmirshekan, and Mark Irving. Different Sames: New Perspectives in Contemporary Iranian Art. Ed. Hossein Amirsadeghi. London: Thames & Hudson, 2009

  • 2008

    DARABI, Helia. “Beyond Nostalgia.” Etemaad Newspaper, No. 1617. 17 February 2008