Language Dliemma by Mehrdad Shoghi
Language Dliemma by Mehrdad Shoghi
Sholeh Abghari Art Gallery is pleased to present LANGUAGE DILEMMA by Mehrdad Shoghi.
LANGUAGE DILEMMA by Mehrdad Shoghi
Mehrdad Shoghi’s “Language Dilemma” exhibition explores the nature of language and its ability to evoke emotions and convey meaning beyond mere words. Through calligraphy, sculpture, and painting, the artist delves into the fluid space between lines, exposes the emptiness in our understanding, and challenges the ego of humankind.
Mehrdad Shoghi is a renowned visual artist and painter who has dedicated over three decades to exploring the art of calligraphy and Kufic script. Born in Iran, Shoghi has been professionally practicing his craft since 1992 and has established a reputation as one of the most innovative and forward-thinking artists of his generation. In 1998, Shoghi discovered a passion for Kufic script and has since dedicated himself to uncovering its potential as a form of art. He has developed a unique style that combines the fluidity of his brushwork with the inherent rigidity of the script, resulting in a truly one-of-a-kind style of writing. His pieces are characterized by a deliberate disregard for readability, inviting the viewer to embark on a spiritual journey of contemplation.
Shoghi has had a successful career, exhibiting his works in solo shows across Europe, the Middle East, and North America. His pieces have been celebrated for their originality, creativity, and beauty and have been collected by many private collectors and prestigious institutions such as the British Museum, the Islamic Art Museum of Malaysia, and the Modern Art Museum in Tehran, Iran.
This exhibition has been created since he migrated to Spain in 2018 and includes the following six collections:
The “Between the Lines” collection is a tribute to the beauty and versatility of the Kufic script, a form of calligraphy that has been used for centuries to adorn texts, manuscripts, and architectural spaces. Through this collection, the artist invites the viewer to delve into the fluid space between the lines, where the mystical and abstract realm of the script resides. This collection is a reflection of the artist’s deep fascination with the Kufic script and its ability to evoke emotions and convey meaning beyond the mere words it spells. The artist has meticulously explored the intricate details of the script and discovered a world of movement, flow, and grace that exists between the lines.
The “Antler-o-Logue” series, is a thought-provoking collection that explores the ego of humankind through its use of language. The series consists of both sculptures and works on paper that feature stone-faced creatures with the alphabet as antlers. The combination of sculptures and works on paper in the series creates a rich and diverse visual experience for the viewer. The sculptures, made of rock and metal, have a tangible and solid quality that reflects the solidification of the ego. On the other hand, works on paper, made with mixed media, have a more fluid and ephemeral quality that captures the ever-changing nature of our thoughts and beliefs. In this series, the artist uses the alphabetic shape of the antler to symbolize the show-off aspect of the ego. The alphabet, which is used to communicate and express thoughts, is transformed into a display of egoistic pride. This serves as a reminder of how language, when misused, can become a threatening element that has the power to convert us into hard-line, emotionless beings.
“The Origin” As an artist, I harness the elemental power of line and circle to express emotions and thoughts. Drawing upon the timeless simplicity of these foundational forms, which are the building blocks of visual communication and the birthplace of the alphabet, I delve into the primordial beauty of nature. Inspired by the sky, sun, and sea, I seek to evoke a sense of transformation through my use of lines and circles, tapping into the deep roots of human expression. My goal is to create works that resonate with the viewer on an emotional level, inviting them to connect with the essence of visual communication.
“Decoding” presents a unique and thought-provoking artistic exploration of the inner workings of existence. The artworks in this collection are the result of the artist’s journey inward, delving into the depths of their thoughts and emotions to uncover the mysteries of life. Through vivid visual storytelling, the artist invites the viewer to embark on this journey with them and gain a deeper understanding of the unknown. Utilizing a variety of materials and techniques, the artist has created a visual language that transcends traditional boundaries and provides a new lens through which to view existence.
“Absence” This painting collection is a powerful commentary on the nature of language and the elusive quality of meaning. The use of fragmented calligraphic forms and sharp cuts is a visual representation of the deconstruction of language, stripping it of its surface and exposing the emptiness that often lies beneath it. The negative spaces that are left behind are metaphors for the voids in our understanding, where meaning can often be found in the absence of information. The fluidity of the calligraphic forms evokes a sense of movement and reminds us that interpretation is never static, but constantly changing and shaped by our experiences. It is a reminder that meaning is not always immediately apparent, and that what can shape our understanding of it is absent as much as what is present. The emptiness in the spaces between the forms acts as a visual representation of the voids in our understanding and encourages us to think about the power of what is not said or seen.
“The Albums” The collection of six original handcrafted albums presented here represents a unique fusion of traditional 16th- and 17th-century Persian albums and contemporary mixed media techniques. The form of the album, in the shape of an accordion, adds a three-dimensional quality to the pages, creating an impact that transcends the traditional flat form of an album. These original artworks are not simply objects to be viewed, but rather, they are meant to be experienced. They are books to be touched, flipped through, and connected with on a personal level. The use of calligraphy and bookmaking techniques creates a sensory experience that elevates the artworks to a higher level of engagement and intimacy. The themes of the artworks are centered on the idea of absence and the distance between nothingness and eternity. The richly textured and layered surfaces, the intricate details, and the meaningful composition of the works evoke a sense of timelessness and invite the viewer to contemplate the fragility of life and the beauty of existence. Through the medium of calligraphy and bookmaking, these artworks provide a connection to the deeper aspects of our collective memory.
By tapping into the fundamental elements of visual communication, Shoghi creates a visual language that transcends traditional boundaries and provides a new lens through which to view existence.
Shoghi’s works invite the viewer to question their relationship with language and its power to shape our perceptions and beliefs, reminding us of the importance of constantly questioning and decoding the messages that surround us.
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