Mahmoud Bakhshi deals with a visual aesthetic that developed in Iran in the aftermath of the Revolution of 1979. He reflects on the recent history of Iran through a recontextualisation of the official symbolism of the propaganda art, and uses deeper historical and traditional formal references to ground this recent history within the larger context of what forms his national identity. Bakhshi’s work weaves complex and often poetic connections between the historical, political and religious dissonances that structure the cultural life of his home country.
In his talk Bakhshi will speak about how he uses the visual language familiar to the millions of ordinary Iranians to highlight the events and circumstances of day-to-day life in the country. He sees his position as that of an observer and is withdrawing any possible commentary or critique of his own of the events he is referring to. Bakhshi’s most recent projects are simply inviting the audience to stop and reflect, they are a visual sketch of the impalpable social mood. Bakhshi will also speak about Bon-Gah project he has been developing in his studio in Keresht just outside Tehran. It is an artist run art centre and residency that is developing new for Iran form of art institution.
Mahmoud Bakhshi (b 1977) is an Iranian visual artist. His previous exhibitions include: The Great Game, National Pavilion of Iran at 56th International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia All the World’s Futures curated by Okwui Enwezor, Venice, 2015; Too early, too late. Middle East and Modernity, Pinacoteca Nazionale di Bologna 2015.
In 2004 Bakhshi established artist books publishing named BON-GAH. In 2012 BON-GAH moved to a new warehouse style space just outside of Tehran. The new building has allowed for the project to develop wider and it now incorporated artist studios and production facilities. Throughout his career Mahmoud Bakhshi has collaborated on a number of films as artistic director and also co-producer. Among them, “BAG DAD BAR BER” 2006 and “A Respectable Family” 2012 both directed by Massoud Bakhshi.
Bakhshi’s upcoming exhibitions and projects include: Endless Celebration, temporary intervention to former Lenin monument plinth, Kiev; Locus Solus, De Appel, Amsterdam; he will have a solo exhibition at narrative projects in London, scheduled for January 2017; he is also included in Mohammed Afkhami Collection. Rebel, Jester, Poet, Mystic: Contemporary Persians atthe Aga Khan Museum in Toronto and the accompanying publication published in London by Phaidon. This project is scheduled for February 2017.