Newsha Tavakolian Wins the 2015 Prins Claus Award

We are excited to learn that Iranian photographer and photojournalist Newsha Tavakolian wins the 2015 Prins Claus Award! Tavakolian will be presented with the prize by Prince Constantijn of The Netherlands at a ceremony held in the Amsterdam Royal Palace on December 2nd. As part of the award, Tavakolian will receive a prize of 100 thousand euros and exhibition of her work will be held in Amsterdam by the Prince Claus Fund Gallery from November 27th and March 4th.

Tavakolian, who is quite active on social media, posted a statement on her Facebook page, which you can read here:

Dear all,

I am extremely humbled and overwhelmed to have been chosen as the winner of the 2015 principal Prince Claus award. I will never forget this day in my life.

Unfortunately it is hard for me to enjoy this prize as much as I would like to, seeing the region where I work and live in flames and tens of thousands seeking refuge in faraway lands.

I had already decided to donate 13.000 euro’s to the Sheed award, a fully independent photography prize in Iran. They will use it for an annual grant for two young photographers, as well as for a 5 year long educational project for young Iranian documentary photographers.

The Mahak charity helps children with cancer. They treated my cousin Ali Reza who suffered from leukemia. Despite the fantastic and free care he did not make it and died age 10. I had long ago decided to support them, the Prince Claus award helps me to donate 10.000 euro’s for their charity.

Animals are the love of my life and there are several good organizations in Iran supporting animals in my country. I salute the often young volunteers who work day in day out in shelters. I will divide 7000 euro’s over some of these organizations
Today I have also decided to donate another 15.000 euro’s to an organization supporting Syrian and Iraqi refugees. I have worked in both their countries and want to give back to all the kindness Iraqi’s and Syrians always welcomed me with, despite the dire circumstances they live in.

Please help me find an organization that helps people in a good and transparent way. All suggestions are welcome. I will report on my Facebook when I made the donations.

I want to dedicate this Award to all colleagues who risk their lives telling stories of others that no one listens too.
Finally, my congratulations to the other winners and deepest gratitude to the Prince Claus Fund and the jury.

Newsha Tavakolian

You can view more of Tavakolian’s work on her website.

Congratulations to Tavakolian on her achievements!

[ Image via Prins Claus Fund ]

Newsha Tavakolian at East Wing Gallery

Photojournalist Newsha Tavakolian has an exhibition at East Wing Gallery. Running until September 3, 2015, Blank Pages of an Iranian Photo Album is Tavakolian’s testament to the complexities of her generation:

“The family photo album is the showcase for my generation. The yellowed albums and pictures of smiling children dressed up in their best clothes are testament to our hopes and dreams, but they end in blank pages and the moment when our parents stopped taking our pictures (…)

For me Iran is the country where I was born, I went to school here, started my career, and never left. As a photographer I have always struggled with how to perceive my society, with all its complexities and misunderstandings. For this project, I have decided to continue producing the photo albums of my generation. To add the pictures that were never taken of the way that life is for them now, as adults. I followed people who, in a sense, define this generation. They are interchangeable, thus representing many. This photo album is theirs; it is my vision of life in Iran now, unromantic and confined. Those who feature on the pages are interchangeable, placed randomly in the natural situation of what is or could be their daily lives.”

Born in 1981, Tavakolian is a self-taught photographer and one of only a handful of women who are photojournalists in Iran. She has covered international events such as the 1999 Student Uprising in Iran, the Iraq War, and other regional conflicts. Her work is published internationally in magazines and newspapers, including: Time Magazine, Newsweek, Stern, Le Figaro, Colors, The New York Times, Der Spiegel, Le Monde, NRC Handelsblad, The New York Times Magazine, and National Geographic.

In 2013, Tavakolian was the 5th laureate of the Carmignac Gestion Photojournalism Award. Her work has been displayed in dozens of international art exhibitions and has been on show in museums such as the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, LACMA in Los Angeles and the British Museum, which has also bought several of her prints.

You can view works from the exhibition at East Wing here, and learn more about Tavakolian and her work from her website.

[via East Wing]

24th Annual 100 Works, 100 Artists

The 24th annual 100 Works, 100 Artists commenced on July 24th in Tehran’s Golestan Gallery. This year’s massive group exhibition will feature an impressive 178 pieces from 160 different established and upcoming Iranian artists.

The exhibition features a vast array of contemporary Iranian art of different mediums and styles, including 40 sculptures. Works by several well known artists will be available, but the 100 Works, 100 Artists is also known to be a springboard for lesser known and younger artists hoping to get a foothold in the art world and consequently, it’s market. With the creation of this annual exhibition, Lili Golestan (the owner & artistic director of Golestan Gallery and curator of this exhibition) has always aimed to showcase the wide spectrum of great art available in Iran with the hopes that the public will support the artists and in turn, the art market will flourish.

The exhibition will run until August 24th at Golestan Gallery.

[Image via Masoud Soheili Photography]

Group Exhibition at Tehran’s Etemad Gallery

Today is the opening of a huge summer group exhibition at Tehran’s Etemad Gallery!

In this exhibition, forty artists from different artistic backgrounds will exhibit works of sculpture, paintings, and drawings in a group exhibition.

Works by artists Mohsen Ahmadvand, Ashkan Abdoli, Maryam Azadfallah, Amin Bagheri, Mostafa Choobtarash, Mostafa Darehbaghi, Aylar Dastgiri, Elnaz Farajollahi, Peyman Hooshmandzadeh, Shabnam Jahanshahi, Simin Jalilian, Hoda Kashiha, Golnaz Kianpour, Alireza Masoumi, Omid Masoumi, Shohreh Mehran, Shahla Ahmadi Moghaddam, Mehrdad Mohebali, Saeed Mohammadzadeh Hodehi, Amir Mokhber, Alireza Nekouei, Raheleh Nooravar, Sepideh Nourmohammad Manesh, Abdolhamid Pazoki, Kimia Rahgozar, Mohamad Rahimi, Sara Rahanjam, Mehdi Rangchi, Elmira Rouzbeh, Afarin Sajedi, Nastaran Safaei, Amirhossein Shahbodaghlou, Mohammadreza Shahrokhinehad, Amir Shams, Bahar Taheri, Rashin Teymouri, Leila Vismeh, Ramtin Zad, and Neda Zare will be featured in this exhibtion.

The show will run from 10 July – 24 July, 2015.

[via Honar Online – Translated by Modje Taavon // image via Gallery Etemad]

A Conversation with Artist Shirin Ettehadieh

Honar Online recently had a conversation with artist Shirin Ettehadieh  regarding her current exhibition Face & Hands at Azad Gallery in Tehran said: “For many years, the subject of my work has been Woman and her hands, and one can always find a trace of women in my work. For this reason, last year I curated an exhibition of works by women artists of different mediums, such as photography, ceramics, and so on… which was highly welcome by the public. In this regard, and to continue with this show, I decided to exhibit my works individually – focusing on the faces and hands of women.

Ettehadieh pointed out that for humans, the hands and face are essential for expressing one’s emotions: “That is how one would be able to interpret someone’s state of mind. Also, I was subconsciously pulled towards this direction – in the previous series, entitled Black Singers, hands were part of the works and an element of the existence of my working subjects. Faces and hands were also elements of the Iranian Tribal Women series, which subconsciously appeared in my works. In my previous exhibitions, some viewers found hands to be a source of inspiration for creating their own pieces and caused them to continue working on it. In this current series, Faces & Hands, I chose to work on the hands and faces of women and created nine large dimension pieces for exhibition.”

In response to a question about why she has chosen women as her main subject, Ettehadieh said: “In my opinion, on whatever path one walks, one must work professionally. Everything cannot work together at once. One must focus on a single element. On the topic of women – I always try to work on a subject that allows me to grasp the depths of that subject and I hope I have been able to do that professionally. The theme of Women will always afford me the opportunity to work more professionally and make me see with more depth.”



[via Honar Online; translated from Persian by Modje Taavon]

Art News Roundup

Art News Roundup! Here are some exciting things going on in the Iranian art world:

  • Tehran’s Laleh Gallery will host an exhibition of the latest works from the students of veteran Assyrian-Iranian artist, Hannibal Alkhas (1930-2010). The exhibition runs until June 21st and features work by Reza Bangiz, Bahram Dabiri, Rozita Sharafjahan, Taraneh Sadeghian, Niloufar Ghaderinejad, Ahmad Vakili, Ali Nedaee, Nasser Mohammadi, Masoud Saadeddin, Katayoun Moghaddam, Hadi ziaeddini, Hamed Sahihi, and others. The exhibition is being held in memory of Alkhas.
  • On view since June 12, Abolghassem Saeedi`s first solo exhibition in Iran, will run for one month at the newly-founded Shahrivar gallery in Tehran. The exhibition will showcase 30 artworks by Saeedi.
  • The 7th Tehran International Sculpture Symposium is to be held from September 23 to October 16. The symposium is organized by Tehran’s Municipality Beautification Organization, and according to Mojtaba Musavi [secretary of the symposium], with the aim to help “beautify the urban environment of the city, causing it to bloom with artistic creations, and familiarize the citizens wit hthe process of making new sculptural designs.”
    • Tehran’s Aun Gallery is hosting an exhibition titled “The Pomegranate Project” until June 24th, featuring artworks by Golnar Dashti and Italian artists Vittoria Bagnoli, Miriam Poggiali, Luca Corti, Stefano Galli, Emanuele Greco – all alumni of the Florence Academy of Art.

    Until next week!

Behind the Scenes At the 4th Annual Tehran Auction

We’re back with photos from behind the scenes at the 4th Annual Tehran Auction! As we reported before, this year’s auction far surpassed expectations yet again, generating over 7 million dollars and selling 125 out of 126 lots! Pretty impressive for an auction event still it its relative infancy.

Our very own Homa Taraji spent time as part of the phone staff taking international bids on the lots. She also presented a talk on the Iranian art market outside of Iran as part as this year’s educational course put forth by Dr. Alireza Sami Azar.

Below are a few photos taken from the auction floor.


Film Screening At LACMA: Parviz Tanavoli

Parviz Tanavoli: Poetry in Bronze is a documentary film about the life and work of Parviz Tanavoli, hailed as the Iran’s greatest living sculptor. The film was written, produced, and directed by Terrance Turner and released in 2014. Featuring exclusive interviews with the artist, the film offers insight into Tanavoli’s career, which spans an impressive 50 years.

LACMA will screen this film Sunday, 28 June, 2015 at 3 PM at LACMA’s Brown Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public. Check out the trailer for the documentary, below!

[via LACMA]

Art News Roundup

Art News Roundup! Here are some exciting things going on in the Iranian art world:

  • Tara Gallery Director, Homa Taraji, gave a talk on the Promotion of Iranian Art in the International Art Market as part of Tehran Auction’s education program on the International Art Market for Iranian Art. Participants received a certificate of completion at the end of the 4 day course held at the Parsian Azadi Hotel in Tehran, May 26 – May 28, 2015.
  • Sohrab Sepehri’s painting sold for $845K at 4th Tehran Art Auction – The fourth Tehran Auction has broken the all-time record of Iran’s art auctions thanks to the sale of a painting by Iranian renowned poet Sohrab Sepehri for over $845,000.
  • Iranian director Bahram Beizaii’s acclaimed drama Bashu, The Little Stranger will go on screen from June 6 at the “Art & Experience Group” movie theaters in Iran, 26 years after its premiere in 1989.
  • Shirin Neshat: Facing History – A retrospective of Neshat’s work is ongoing at the Smithsonian Institute’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C. The exhibition features her photographs and video installations and will run through September 20, 2015.

Till next week!

The 4th Annual Tehran Auction

The 4th Annual Tehran Auction took place on 29 May 2015 at Tehran’s Parisian Azadi Hotel. The auction featured over 300 works of art by some of the greatest contemporary Iranian artists of note. Established names such as Sohrab Sepehri, Parviz Tanavoli, Farhad Moshiri, Bahman Mohassess, Hossein Zenderoudi, Reza Derakhshani, Farideh Lashai, Behjat Sadr, Koorosh Shishegaran, Seyed Mohammad Ehsai, Abbas Kiarostami, and the great Kamal al-Molk, himself – Mohammad Ghaffari.

This year’s Tehran Auction generated an astounding 7,264,323.87 USD in sales! These record breaking numbers are a sure testament to the strength and power which art holds in Iran and its market. The Tehran Auction is a privately developed initiative organized by former head of the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art, Dr. Alireza Samiazar. It began as “an endeavour to fulfill the increasing interest in modern and contemporary Iranian art and to facilitate the acquisition of the best quality works of various genres. It also aims to support the domestic art market as a key basis for the international market.”

Our director, Homa Taraji, was in Tehran working closely with the Auction team – hopefully soon we will have some behind the scenes goodies for you all!

View the catalog here, and view the auction results here.

Check back on Tara Gallery’s blog for more updates, soon!