First Female Iranian Artist to Have Solo Show at Guggenheim

For one artist, her dreams finally came true at the age of 92 when she was selected to be the first Iranian female artists to have a solo show at the famous Guggenheim Museum in New York City.

Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian is a visual artist best known for her geometric style and mirrored sculptures. She has been living in New York since the 1950s, walking past the Guggenheim Museum every single day, not knowing that one-day she would be so honored as to show her own work there.

Farmanfarmaian was born in Qazvin in 1924 and studied Fine Arts at the University of Tehran. When she came to the United States, she proceeded to continue on in her Fine Arts education at Cornell University, as well as Parsons School of Design.

During her school years in New York City, she was absorbed into the thriving art world. She had become friends with the one and only Andy Warhol. They bonded over their passion for fashion illustration and design and even went on to exchange prints.

In 1957 Farmanfarmaian got married and moved back to Iran. She began to show her works in small galleries as well as collect art. Her style back then could be said to have been more traditional folk.

It was during her visit to the United States in 1978 that troubles at home arose with the beginning of the Revolution. Both her and her husband ended up being exiled and having to remain in the States until 1992 when they finally got to go back home. During her stay in exile, Farmanfarmaian was able to focus on her work and develop the visual style she uses in her work today.

Farmanfarmaian’s retrospective at the Guggenheim spans across four decades of the artists work. She has equated her initial inspiration for her style to being a little girl and staring up at her ceiling every night before bed, which was painted with various shapes and flowers.

You can see this beautiful exhibition titled Infinite Possibility: Mirror Works and Drawings 1974 – 2014 at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City until June 3, 2015.