Like many children, I was fascinated with arts and crafts from my very early years. Although I was encouraged by my family, I had never considered becoming a full time artist, mainly because of my larger socio-cultural context. Yet, my connection and attraction to the arts, must have continued to percolate beneath my skin, because soon after I immigrated to the United States, I decided to pursue art more seriously. I was studying engineering at the time at San Jose State University, when I decided to change my major and entered the art department.
Ever since, I have had an ongoing relationship with the arts, and feel very fortunate to have been exposed to two different artistic and cultural traditions. For me, the practice of art is a solid and yet abstract way to navigate through conceptual currents and inquiries. I am interested in art as life and/or life as art, and feel that, this might be a product of my cultural upbringing in Iran, where art was more infused into everyday life and inseparable from it. Consequently, I respond most favorably to art that is accessible, democratic and approachable by anyone, anywhere and at any time.
“I am interested in art as life and life as art.”
My art is essentially autobiographical, and is informed by my bi-cultural background. I celebrate my diverse identity, and yet highly value the notion of unity and equity. I recognize that my work is an exploration of who I am, however I am uninterested in a self-centered, private and over bearing means of expression that excludes and is accessible only to a select few.
I sometimes use familiar and recognizable icons stemming from my cultural background, although I am actually more curious about creating an expressive language that poetically, versus graphically, reflects cultural nuances. I am interested in aesthetic compositions that welcome everyone, and have the power to delve into, excavate and reveal deeper human values.
I have particularly come to appreciate the significance of the imagination as the gateway to understanding, discoveries, inventions, creativity and ultimately to knowledge. I have been inspired to seek out ways of art making that are not quite representational, nor fully abstract, in order to activate, stimulate and engage the imagination. I have sought to study the capability of this type of imagery for providing the viewer with a portal into their own imaginal realm and consequently unleashing their own creative potential.