* Evocation Field

Group Exhibition - Bavan X Mey, February 27 - March 26, 2024

* Individual Works

* Press Release
BAVAN is pleased to present Evocation Field, a group exhibition curated by Ashkan Zahrae and hosted by Mey Gallery. Featuring work by a diverse set of cutting edge Iranian painters—including Elham Etemadi, Ahoo Hamedi, Mehrdad Jafari, Roghayeh Najdi, Elham Pourkhani, Sanam Sayehafkan, Tarlan Tabar, and Minoo Yalsohrabi—this exhibition invites viewers to engage with a vibrant spectrum of voices and expressions. Evocation Field is an iteration of Tehran-based Bavan Gallery’s “The Land of Cypress Trees” initiative, which showcases art from Iran through international galleries, institutions, and venues.
Drawing inspiration from multiple territories, time periods and points of view, the included artworks offer a glimpse into the complex labyrinth that is contemporary Iranian art. The title Evocation Field is at once a reference to the landscape imagery present throughout the exhibition, and to the field of dialogue between the presented works and their viewers. By entering into this field and grazing upon its narratives, viewers catalyze the artworks with their visual feedback and memories, transforming still images into activated stories.
Though diverse in their inspirations, source material, and styles, many of the works in Evocation Field draw upon Persian literary traditions. Persian miniature painting is most evidently referenced in the narrative paintings of Elham Pourkhani, Sanam Sayehafkan, and Elham Etemadi. Elham Pourkhani’s work
utilizes Persian miniature aesthetics and scales to illustrate contemporary phenomena, while the paintings of Sanam Sayehafkan blur fantasy and reality in sharp hues and acute lines on a much larger scale. More subtle in the work of Elham Etemadi, the influence of Persian miniature paintings can be seen in the way that animals and plants coalesce amongst their human counterparts in opulent settings. Vibrant and entangled, these works are at once entrenched in nostalgia charged with a contemporary presence.
Several of the pieces in Evocation Field hone in on floral imagery, the human figure, and the synthesis of the two. Known for his anthropomorphic paintings and collages, Mehrdad Jafari incorporates flora in his scrapbook-style still life, while Minoo Yalsohrabi, invested in exploring the relationship between food and objects, features rose stems coiled like wire in her surreal rendering. Ahoo Hamedi distills her personal experiences into tender watercolor and ink portraits of women, while Tarlan Tabar blends the body with plants in order to explore concepts like memory, amnesia, and immortality. Roghayeh Najdi’s paintings of people and flora emulate photographic negatives; layered with spatiotemporally-void portraits and lush flowers, these works imbue the past with a hopeful freshness.
* Past Exhibitions