«SIGNAL IS WEAK!» – Solo Exhibition with SAMIRA HODAEI
AB43 CONTEMPORARY, Orangerie, Im Park 2, Thalwil/Zurich
Public Opening: Saturday, 21st October 2017, 1 pm – 4 pm
(the artist will be in attendance)
Exhibition: 21st October – 25th November 2017
Artist Talk: Wednesday, 18th October 2017, 8.15 pm – 9.15 pm
at Kulturraum Thalwil (Bahnhofstrasse 24, 8800 Thalwil)
The discussion (in English) will be conducted by Paulina Szczesniak, an art journalist who works for the newspaper “Tages-Anzeiger” in Zurich.
Samira Hodaei is a quiet person. Almost too quiet for a young artist, who is on the verge of achieving a major breakthrough on the international art scene. What is real, what is unreal? What are dreams; what is reality? What is personal perception? Is my world your world as well? What is clear for all to see; and what remains hidden? Is there a link between us – a link between the things in life and us? And is this link disturbed? These are all questions posed by the critical artist SAMIRA HODAEI, a young woman, who grew up in Teheran – and who radiates both calmness and strength. She is showing her latest works from the series «SIGNAL IS WEAK!» in an exclusive solo exhibition at the AB43 CONTEMPORARY gallery.
Samira Hodaei’s clear, dark, eyes radiate strength and confidence. She is highly observant and comes across as a very sensitive person. Her shy manner appears to be in contradiction to the power of her pictures.
But that is only seemingly the case. Contradiction is per se a characteristic of Iranian society: a commonplace ambiguity shaped by religion. It is one, in which everybody seeks to find their way as best they can in a system strictly monitored by guardians of public morals. Yet despite this, in a private setting Persian life in all its colourful facets is able to flourish to the full – with joie de vivre, dance and music.
Samira Hodaei’s pictures appeal not only to the viewer’s eye but to other senses as well – shaped as they are by her dot-glass painting technique. They have a haptic quality and are filled with symbolism. Dots on the canvas that appear like tiny stones stand for the Iranian practice of stoning people. There is a picture of a woman – full of poetry, symbolic imagery, mysticism and graphical elements that remind one of the ceramic-calligraphic inscriptions featured in mosques. In the final analysis, when all the symbolism, ambiguity and poetry have been appropriately processed by the brain, it becomes clear who should be indicted here.
And that is courageous act. Samira is courageous. And clever, too. She knows how she has to play the game with ambiguity so that her pictures can be shipped abroad without being censored. As a rule, this works in her favour. That is in part due to the fact that she chooses not to exhibit her works in Iran. «Up till now, I have only shown my pictures in Europe. Naturally I would love to exhibit my works in my homeland. But I do not want to have to censor myself in order to do so.»
Nevertheless, her country of origin is important to her. It is from here that Samira Hodaei draws her inspiration, strength and the intuition for create her pictures.
Samira Hodaei always finds the subjects for her work in the private sphere – and contrasts them with the developments in Iranian society. Then she sets about checking out Google, researching and making collages. Following that, she designs patterns, graphics and drawings, and paints them on to the canvas – whereby in view of her particular technique one needs to refer to much more than simply «painting.» «I was in search of something that represents my feelings in a pure, visual language. In art it’s not just about the story you want the picture to tell but also about the form in which it is reproduced. I wanted something that creates a 3D-effect on the canvas.»
Her dot-glass painting technique consists of the following: The special glass colours do not penetrate the canvas. Instead, the paint dries and hardens on it. This way, a relief emerges, which means the picture can be explored as a haptic experience. The various dots and blobs on the canvas mix with each other and create the effect of the artwork vibrating. The pure form of her pictures is in itself fascinating.
The title of her current series «SIGNAL IS WEAK!» is not immediately clear. This is due to the presence of – again – ambiguity, symbolism and the graphical elements. The works have a blurred appearance; the boundaries are fluid. «It’s all about how we are caring less and less about our fellow human beings. We see through the media how people are suffering. But we are no longer touched by this because suffering has degenerated into an everyday state of normality», says Samira Hodaei.
«We’ve even come to regarding those who are suffering to have deserved their fate. I want to show that we need to return to thinking more deeply about this suffering – and in a differentiated way.» Samira Hodaei: talking about her series of pictures «SIGNAL IS WEAK!».
More information to be found under the following link on our website:
- Press Release short version
- Press Release long version
- Artist Statement
- Images in high-resolution quality (Portrait, artworks and artwork details from Samira Hodaei)
- E-Card Invitation to the Public Opening
Press contact: Franz J. Leupi unter +41 79 698 05 56 or firstname.lastname@example.org