Artist: Arita Shahrzad
Exhibition title: Human, All Too Human
Curator: Carmensa de la Hoz
Dates: 17.02.2022 – 29.05.2022
Place: CAAM – San Antonio Abad. Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Spain.
Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 10am to 9pm. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Produces: Centro Atlántico de Arte Moderno. Cabildo de Gran Canaria
Extended until June 19, 2022
The CAAM, Centro Atlántico de Arte Moderno, at Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, presents Human, All Too Human, the first exhibition in a Spanish museum by Iranian artist Arita Shahrzad. Curated by Carmensa de la Hoz, the show will be on display from February 17 to July 17 at CAAM’s San Antonio Abad space, with free admission.
Human, All Too Human is a sculptural project of architectural, philosophical and poetic resonances, integrated by works created in Iran, expressly for its exhibition at CAAM, which show the result of the research work developed in recent years by Shahrzad, with the collaboration of artists, architects and artisans of her country, who have managed to interpret her proposals through technology and an intellectual dialogue that goes beyond the initial positions of each one.
Arita Shahrzad (Tehran, 1958) resides between Tehran, Geneva and New York as she has a triple Iranian, Swiss and American nationality. She has exhibited her pictorial work in various public and private institutions in cities such as Tehran, Geneva, New York and Cairo, as well as in art galleries in Madrid and Barcelona. She has also made outstanding incursions into film, video and photography.
Enshallah Rhamati, PhD in Philosophy, introduces the exhibition in the publication of the exhibition, in which he explains that it is a project inspired by traditional Persian wisdom and, therefore, can be considered as an interpretation of classical Iranian art. It is an exceptional exhibition that aims to bring the public closer to the concept of spiritual identity inherent in human nature, through works that propose a reflection on the ultimate meaning of our life experience and reveal a series of keys that govern our spirit.
The evolution of traditional Iranian art is the basis on which this exhibition project is based. The pieces that make up the exhibition are inspired by the traditions of this Middle Eastern country, based on the ancestral commitment of the Iranian people to protect and keep alive the culture of ancient Persia and its famous contributions to the history of art, in disciplines such as architecture, sculpture, masonry, ceramics, painting or calligraphy, among others, as well as in the creation of carpets.
This exhibition aims to contribute to the preservation of the precious human achievement that is Persian culture and to highlight its importance so that future generations can protect it and not see it as merely a matter of the past or a form of spirituality. It should not be forgotten that Persia was for some three thousand years an influential empire of legends and incalculable wealth, which, despite its complex history and waves of invasions, still proudly preserves its identity and language today.
According to the curator of the exhibition, this project represents “the culmination of an unprecedented creative process” in the artist’s professional career, during which Shahrzad has sought the spiritual advice of renowned philosophers in her country. In fact, the genesis of this project is to be found in the schools of thought and the theoretical bases of Islamic art, among which are the precepts contained in the treatises of the 12th century Persian philosopher Sohrevardi, considered the founder of the illuminative philosophy, based on wisdom as a reflective experience.
Thus, Shahrzad’s works represent codes expressed in Sohrevardi’s allegories, which have influenced Iranian literature and art, and which, in this case, are not expressed in the language of poetry or in the work of miniaturists, but acquire, for the first time, the form of sculptural works. The artist intends this new vision that she has outlined in her career to be a good start to transmit to current audiences concepts of this wisdom developed from the tradition of Iranian art, from this innovative format.
With this background and from her perception of the world, Arita Shahrzad’s new project, whose title is inspired by Nietzsche’s work of the same name, “combines three elements that she considers fundamental: perfection, beauty and spirituality,” explains the curator. “The knowledge acquired throughout her rich and experienced life career gives Shahrzad a great intelligence, a spiritual lucidity that, together with her faculties, manages to penetrate the soul of human nature,” De la Hoz points out.
Presentation of the exposition