Avish Khebrehzadeh, ‘Three Manatees’, 2009, Fort Worth Contemporary Arts

About Avish Khebrehzadeh

Poetic, dreamlike, and full of ambiguity, the paintings, drawings, and animations of Avish Khebrehzadeh are born out of her experience as an immigrant. Claiming, “mystery is good…I don’t want things definable,” she leaves her works deliberately open-ended, evoking the feelings of unfamiliarity, dislocation, and unease that moving from place to place around the world, always outside of her native Iran, stirs up within her. Rendered delicately and with a calligraphic line, the animals and human figures that populate her compositions appear isolated from each other and their surroundings. They are often engaged in inexplicable actions—tickling each other, turning cartwheels across a stage, sitting slumped in a chair—that appear both poignant and absurd. By combining motifs from traditional Iranian art, like floral patterning, with references to contemporary culture, Khebrehzadeh creates a visual hybridity reflective of her own multifaceted identity.

Iranian, b. 1969, Tehran, Iran, based in Rome and Washington D.C.

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