Painting History in Iran – Part II – Modern and Contemporary
The great Masters of Contemporary Miniature who follow the schools of Neo-Herat / Neo-Safavid School, include:Tajvidi Hadi, Ali Motie and Mohammad Mossaver-ol-Molk.
Another artist to be mentioned among the great do not belong to these currents is Mahmoud Farshchian. All these painters have techniques and new perspectives to illustrate manuscripts. Hossein Behzad has introduced a new technique for Miniature. According to Zaman Khan School based on Indo-Persian style invented a new technique that combines the design and color as primary elements of painting, using color sparingly in contrast to the classical Persian use. Ali Karimi (1913-1997) used as traditional way of literary subjects, and he was inspired by common characters too.
Hossein Behzad (Tehran, 1894-1968) Iranian painter of international fame. Combines the tradition of the Mongol and Safavid Miniature in a fresh and modern style of painting using modern techniques providing a powerful delicacy and harmony of colors. His first interest was the study of old masters style as Kamaleddin Behzad and Reza Abbassi. His imitations were so skill that you could not find any difference. After weddind in 1921, he becomes father of Parviz. In 1934 he left for Paris to study painting in the major French museums. After 13 months, back in Iran formed a new personal style for Miniature. In this way revives a new splendor for Minuature. In celebration of the millennium of Avicenna (1953), it was brought to international headlines for its charming exhibition at the Bastan Museum. He was buried at the cemetery of Adjasent Imamzadeh Abdullah Rey, near Tehan.
Clara Abkar (1905 New Julfa – 1996 Tehran) – Iranian painter and minaturist. The Abkar Museum (1994) contains miniatures by Artist Klara Abkar. She was perfect miniaturist with a particular style that is inspired by mysticism and Iranian literature. It is located in Sa `d-Abad Palace, residence of the last Shah of Iran.
Mahmoud Farshchian (1930 Isfahan) master of Persian painting and miniature. Isfahan is the resort of the most importance for the Islamic period Art. It is considered a modernizer in the miniature, Art founded in Persia and then exported to China, Turkey and other countries in the Middle East. His father was rug merchant and passionate Art to transmit this passion to the young Mahmoud. He had Mirza Haji-Agha Emami and Isa Bahadori as Masters. Graduated from high school of fine arts in Isfahan, Farshchian left for Europe to study the works of the great masters of Western painting, developing an innovative artistic style universally recognized. Return to Iran, he started working at the National Institute of Fine Arts (later the Ministry of Art and Culture) and subsequently, he was appointed director of the Department’s National Art and University professor of the School of Fine Arts in Teheran. His painting is very known throughout the world. In 2001, the Heritage Foundation has instituted the “Museum of Master Mahmoud Farshchian”, in the Cultural Complex Sa’dabad Tehran. At present Master Farshchian resides in New Jersey (USA). Farshchian is the founder of an Iranian painting school with its own original style. His painting adheres to the classical form while resorting to the use of new techniques. His contribution made it possible to release the Iranian Painting from the traditional relationship with poetry and literature. His paintings have vibrant colors, dynamism and modernity while remaining in a traditional concept and at the same time innovative.
Aydin Aghdashloo (1940 Rasht, Iran) painter, miniaturist, critic of Art and History, graphic designer. He lives in Theran and he teaches in several Iranian Universities.
His father, Mammad Hajiev was an engineer and Minister for Labour in the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan between 1919 and 1920. After the invasion of Azerbaijan by the Soviet Red Army in 1920, he found refuge in Tabriz, Iran. To avoid identification by Soviet spies Mammad changed his name and moved to Rasht birthplace of Aydin son. Aydin had five years when his family moved to Tehran. Aydin Aghdashloo began selling his paintings at 14 years, two years after his father’s death.
During the last dynasty Pahlavi Aghdashloo was named by Shahbanu, Farah Pahlavi, Head of Artistic Affairs Office Special Shahbanu using to purchase paintings of the most interesting contemporary artists for the Museum of Contemporary Art in Tehran. In 1977 he contributed to the arrangement of the Reza Abbasi Museum in Tehran, holding the office of director of the museum until 1979.
In 1971 he first married Iranian actress Shohreh Vaziri-Tabar, divorcing in 1979.
With the Iranian Revolution of 1979, Aghdashloo lost jobs and with the established Republic led by Ayatollah Khomeini was prevented him from leaving the country until 1989.
Aghdashloo had to live giving private lessons and adapt to the rules of the Art of Islamization government and culture, before he could teach in Iranian Universities (1981).
In 1990 he will be the first artist to exhibit Assar Art Gallery in Tehran.
In 1981 he married his second wife Firouzeh Athari. From the relationship they had two children: Takin Aghdashloo and Tara Aghdashloo.
His artistic career is marked by an interest in the Renaissance paintings of Sandro Botticelli especially in the study of which has created a lot of perfect copies of the originals. In 1970, he made “Destruction of Memories”, a series of works in which stands the perfect copy of Renaissance masterpieces that are destroyed in beauty with identity and personal ideations. A new series of “Memories of Destruction”, built after 1979, with reference to the Islamic art as a model to be analyzed after an active period in which reference had both the Renaissance and the same Islam.
Since 1979 he will make increasing use of Persian miniatures in his paintings, until the creation of a Persian miniature series very original creased.
Aghdashloo is a great expert on Islamic Iranian art history and pre-Islamic. He evaluates the items for auction houses such as Christie’s and Sotheby’s.
He has released eight publications books, two collections of paintings and two research on Iranian Art History. He teaches Art and Art History in different Iranian universities since 1981.
The Modern Art movement in Iran spread in the late 1940s after death of Kamal-ol-Molk, event that marks the end of the rigid adherence to academic painting lessons. Mahmoud Javadipour along with other artists in 1949 in Tehran opened the Apadana Gallery. Another pioneer of contemporary painting in Iran is Marcos Grigorian that in 1950 opened in Tehran the Galerie Esthetique. To remember the Tehran Biennale in 1958, Saqqakhaneh movement of the 1960s and Atelier Kaboud (1961), a meeting place for writers, artists and architects. Another important event in 1977, was the opening of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Tehran, which it boasts an impressive collection of both Western and Iranian artists.
Mahmoud Javadipour (Tehran 1920 – Monaco of Baviera 2012) painter, graphic artist, illustrator, teacher. One of the pioneers of modern art in Iran along with Hossein Kazemi, Ahmad Esfandiari, Houshang Adjoudani. He is known for his work in oil painting, printer and graphic design. Graduating to the German-Iranian technical school in Tehran, in 1947 he finished painting studies at the Academy of Fine Arts at Tehran University. He traveled to Germany and he continued his studies of Fine Arts in Monaco and at the Art Academy in the Charles Crodel studio. Javadipour in Germany was influenced by artistic movements such as Impressionism, Expressionism and the Bauhaus, and returned home to give impetus to art according to these contemporary movements.
Marcos Grigorian (Russian 1925 – Kropotkin – Armenia 2007) was born in Russia by an Armenian family is one of the pioneers of contemporary Iranian art. In 1930 he moved from Kropotkin to Iran, first in Tabriz, then in Tehran. After finishing high school in Iran, in 1950 he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Via di Ripetta in Rome. In 1954 he returned to Iran to open the Galerie Esthetique in Tehran. In 1958, with Ministry of Culture he organized the first Biennial of Tehran. He was teacher of Academy of Fine Arts too. In 1975 he organized the Group of Free Painters and Sculptors in Tehran which listed names as Gholamhossein Nami, Massoud Arabshahi, Morteza Momayez, Mir Abdolreza Daryabeigi, and Faramarz Pilaram. In his Pop Art search for popular forms and approaches used the ethnic food such as Nan Sangak and Abghousht and investigator with the Earth Art Iran. In 1977 he moved to US, then in Yerevan (Armenia), then in USSR. In 1993 he founded the “Museum of the Middle East” in Yerevan.
Mir Abdolrez Daryabeigi (Rasht 1930 – Nogent-sur-Marne in 2012), modern art innovator and Iranian Artist.
Graduated both History and Geography at the University of Tehran,he has switched to the study of Art at the Marcos Grigorian studies and Ali Azargin.
His early works were exhibited in 1960, receiving a special mention in an exhibition organized in 1968 by UNESCO. A few years later he graduated in lithography, at the University of Salzburg (Austria).
In 1962, Daryabeigi opened Mess (means copper in Persian), his first gallery in Tehran, creating one of the first indipendent galleries of Art in Iran, mainly by exposing his art works and also presented other contemporary Iranian painters. Mr. Daryabeigi is considered one of the greatest exponents of Contemporary Art in Iran, encouraged the generation of abstract painters Iranians.
Mir Abdolreza Daryabeigi initially followed the modern movement in which predominated the traditional Persian and classical elements. Later it focused on a particular style of landscape minimalism, using the space and the shades of color as a distinctive sign. His skies are inspired by Sufi mysticism idealized unity with the divine. In the deserts and empty landscapes, inspired by the native land, it is focused an element, an entity that acquires a special central, dominating the scene.
In 1975, along with Daryabeigi Marcos Grigorian, Morteza Momayyez, Golam-Ḥosayn NAMI, Massoud Arabshahi, Faramarz Pilaram and Sirak Malkoniān, they formed the group of “independent artists” who defined the techniques and styles of the Iranian art for future generations .
In 1979, Daryabeigi moved to Paris, and later, in 1986, in Nogent-sur-Marne, where open his French Art gallery, and where he lived until his death.
Daryabiegi has many personal exhibitions in international places as prestigious honor at the Salon d’Automne in Paris (1973), Maison Nationale (2012).
Sadegh Tabrizi (Tehran 1938) is an Iranian contemporary artist who has contributed to the creation and dissection of modern Art in Iran. Tabrizi can be considered a global artist that has created new perspectives for contemporary Iranian art that along with Saqqakhaneh also contaminated modern art and post-modern Western. It acceded but also exceeded the pioneers of Saqqakhaneh School using a style that mixes traditional Western and Iranian art. After graduating in Miniature at high school, in 1959 he began painting on ceramics. In those years he conceived of free letters and words starting with a ceramic panel compositions (70 × 70cm) in typical inscriptions blue and white of the mosques, and started a trend known as calligraphy socket-based paint for visual qualities and nonverbal. In 1960 during the inauguration of Faculty of Decorative Arts, Tabrizi is being inscribed in the course along with Mansour Ghandriz, Faramarz Pilaram, Massoud Arabshahi and Hossein Zenderoudi. Following his travel and that of their colleagues in the West with the foundation of saqqanè for which Tabrizi was at the front for his activities in various painting techniques an in all media. In 1964 he continued his studies in a master with Ghandriz, Pilaram and Arabshahi when confronted or best students of Fine Arts Unuversity, Morteza Momayez, Rouyin Pakbaz, Hadi Hazaveyee, Sirous Malek Mohammad Mahalati, and engaging in even the best of Decorative Arts university, Tabrizi, Pilaram, Arabshahi, and Ghandriz. The group of thirteen artists could concentrate avant-garde artists together at the Auditorium of Iran, including Sohrab Sepehri, Bijan Safari, Marcos Grigorian, Parviz Tanavoli and Manochehr Sheibani in a group exhibition at Saderat Bank. Tabrizi at Auditorium inauguration of Iran introduced his works that resembled miniature paintings of old books embellished with abstract lines and calligraphic. Followed engravings copper crowned with stones and ancient coins, plaster reliefs on panel, painted on pages of old books and collages inscriptions, stained glass works with mirrors on a black background, the miniature painting techniques that incorporate Persian and religious motifs in large paintings, miniature paintings Persian (1970) with inscriptions Nasta’liq devising a calligraphy that creates abstract shapes in free compositions for the realist painting.
Nasser Ovissi (Tehran 1934) After his studies in Law and Political Science at the University in Tehran, he decided to study Fine Arts in Rome. He was a diplomat and cultural head of the Embassy of Iran in Rome and Madrid. He currently lives in Virginia (USA).
Mansoor Ghandriz (Tabriz 1936-1966) artist who has tried to use the traditional Iranian modern forms in Art, one of the creators of the Iranian pictorial movement Sagha Khane (school that takes its name from the fountain-station to preserve water and fire sacred as early as 1400 BC; now it is decorated with illuminations and verses of the Koran. the tradition includes ritual for artist to drink water, light a candle, hang a padlock or tie a piece of cloth or donate an art work and then make a wish. The term was introduced in 1963 by the art critic Karim Emami to indicate the new style of a group of Iranian artists who had exhibited for the Third Biennial of Tehran in 1962. Saqqakhaneh is the public water fountain that commemorates martyrs from the water private Shiites during the battle of Karbala (680 AD) episode that will see the death of Imam Husain killed by the hand of Yazid, the Sunni monarch. The first 4 components were Sadegh Tabrizi, Hossein Zenderudi, Parviz Tanavoli, Faramarz Pilaram – they took the folk traditions and literary leading them out of their original context, while respecting its derivation.)
Charles Hossein Zenderoudi (Tehran 1937) pioneer of modern art in Iran is an innovator both in painting and in sculpture. Formed in writing and communication, he inspired in 1960 of Sagha Khaneh school. Awarded in 1961 at Paris Biennale, he moved to France where developing a style in line with the lyrical abstraction movement, halfway between Informal and dialectics of Lettrism. At his arrival in Paris he had already matured and glimpsed the limits of writing and wanted to be unmistakably noted for his tone that gave the track of his sign. In some works this sign is recurrent and repetitive to symbolize an obsessive and different communication than in the past. In 1999 Zenderoudi developed photo transfer expanding the quantitative technical language, which is based on a global communication to spread a holy message that presupposes two goals semantics transmission and spiritual participation in the reader’s understanding. Artists spirit must express a soul that is the object of knowledge can overcome the division between mind and matter which is the dichotomy between spirituality and rationalism. We must seek the proximity to the heart of the spectator to his affection by offering their spiritual realism of truth and justice of communicative space Via recurring gestures. The soul is at ease in an affective communication in all possible types of calligraphic intertwining communication, traditional canvas, paper, media stream, monitor. The universal communication of the good is fine any media anywhere you use, there is a departure from the artist and his audience and communication separation of East and West disappears. His work Tchaar Bagh was sold by Christi’s in Dubai for 1.6 million US dollars.
Massoud Arabshahi (Tehran 1935) organized his first solo exhibition at the Tehran Iran-India Centre in 1964, four years before graduating from the University of Decorative Arts in Tehran. He prefers oil on canvas, sculptures and architectural reliefs in his technical inspiration from themes of the past Achaemenid and Assyrian Art, Babylonian and inscriptions combining tradition and modernity. He has had numerous solo and group exhibitions in Iran, Europe and the United States. He lives and works in Tehran and California (USA).
Parviz Tanavoli (Tehran 1937), sculptor, painter, scholar and art collector. After graduating at “Accademia di Brera” in Milan, achieved in 1959, Tanavoli taught sculpture for three years at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Return to Iran took over the sculpture department at the University of Tehran until 1979, when he retired from teaching. In 1960 he was one of the Sagha Khaneh school promoters. He has held solo exhibitions in Austria, Italy, Germany, the United States and Great Britain in the most prestigious locations. His last solo exhibition was a retrospective of 2003 held at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Tehran. Tanavoli is the most quoted Iranian artist living, having been hammered work at a price of more than 6.7 million US dollars. Since 1989 lives in Vancouver (Canada). In 2005 he began an artistic controversy in protest at the conditions of American -prisoners at Guantanamo and in 2006 he created a work to honor the victims of the Israeli-Lebanese war.
Ahmad Al Shahabi (1951) Artist appreciated, operating since 1972, he carries on the canvas elements of Arab Culture blending East with West stilemi those of Cubism, Futurism and the European avant-gardes. The constant reminder to fertility is representing with the Eastern windows and Fatima hand with eye of Allah in the center. Another factor often present the crescent moon and the illuminated Arabic letters. He use many colors, with brigh tonality. Another subject very used in his paintings are the veiled Iranian women, intriguing, mysterious.
Morteza Katouzian (Tehran 1943). Since 1962 he began working in his brother’s studio and at the same time became interested in watercolour. He established himself in 1974.
Sohrab Sepehri (Kashan 1928-1980) Iranian poet and painter. Considered one of the five most famous modern poets Iranians and one of the most important modern painters of Iran. Subjects in his painting are human, nature, religion, Buddhism, mysticism and Western traditions. He died in hospital in Tehran Pars for leukemia.
Pilaram Faramarz (Tehran 1937-1983), a founder of Saqqa-kana School of Art. Of bourgeois origin attended Tehran’s School of Decorative Arts (Honarestān honarhā-and-ye-ye Ziba Pesaran), founded in 1951 by Jalil Zia’pur (1920-1999). Mahmoud had Farschian master for the Miniature. He graduated in 1959 and inscribed at University of Decorative Arts (Dāneškada-and honarhā-ye taz’ini), graduating in 1965. During his study also began artistic production. Already in 1963 the critic Karim Emami wrote a review for him for the expo to Gilgamesh Gallery. Experience the Saqqana also coincided with the founding of the Biennial of Tehran, giving further artistic prestige. Pilaram along with Mansur Qandriz, Sadeq Tabrizi, Morteza Momayyez and Massoud Arabshahi had a key role in founding the Iranian Gallery – Talar-e Iran in 1964. In 1971 he won a study trip to France for Printing and Lithograph. In 1972 he exhibited at the Galerie Cyrus at the Maison de l’Iran in Paris. Returned in Iran he was appointed associate professor at Dāneškada-ye’elm or ṣan’at. In 1974 Pilaram with Grigorian, Momayyez, Golam-Ḥosayn Nami, Massoud Arabshahi, Sirak Malkoniān and Abd-al-Reza Daryābeigi formed the Group of independent artists “Goruh-and-naqqāšān and Azad”. In 1981 he was expelled from the University ṣan’at’Elm or disagreeing with the socio-political climate of the time. In 1983 he died of a heart attack at Mahmud Abad, Mazandaran, and was buried in the cemetery behest of Tehran-e Zahra. He adhered to the ideals of nationalism and Iranian identity of 1960 exploring folk art motifs Shiite flat geometric shapes and calligraphy using colors traditional religious iconography such as blue, gold silver on paper. Later he inserted in his repetitive decorative ornaments works exclusively decorative text and end up distorting handwriting halfway with typography.
Iman Maleki (1976 Tehran) depicts at the age of 15 years, in 1999 he graduated in graphics, his master was Morteza Katouzian the greatest realist painter of Iran.
Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian (1924) is one of the few Iranian women known artists. In 1950 he left for the US with forming a Western culture and adhering to Pop art. Returned in Iran 1957, tried to merge the Iranian classical with western experience especially in the mirror and mosaic works of Safavida and Qajar period.
Shirin Neshat (Qazvin 1957) contemporary visual art artist known for his work in movies, in video and photography. Currently she lives between Iran and the US. She uses her art to the complaint difficult social conditions imposed by the extremist Islamic culture, with attention to the position of women, with all due respect for religious faith. Her most famous representations are the photographic portraits of women’s bodies finished with calligraphy written in Persian.
EMERGING. -> In PROGRESS Among the most valid academy emerging artists we can include