Cycle, 2017

Mixed-Media (paper clay, colored pencil, and branch of a tree)

14" h x 10" w x 4" d

Revolution, 2019

Colored pencil

19" x 24"

Man In Pink, 2020

Colored pencil

26 1/2" x 29"

The male figure in the drawing is based on a photograph of an Iranian photojournalist and artist, Kaveh Golestan

Growing up in Tehran, I was exposed to Persian art and culture, as well as recent Iranian politics, and that double exposure increased my sensitivity to the dynamics of vulnerability and violence that I now explores in my art-making.

In my drawings, unexpected images incorporated in intimate apparel intend to bring humor surprise, and a shock of recognition. Layers of shadowy images reveal stories, with the hope of leaving a mark on the audience. Two worlds–birthplace and adopted home–live alongside each other in my work, joining intimately at a single point. This drawing explores interconnected narratives of pain and pleasure through repeated patterns and an image based on a photograph of women's march for their freedom after the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran. I use eroticism to seduce the viewer, who finds, upon closer inspection, through the layers of colored pencil, past the details of lace and filigree, disruptive iconography narrating inherited histories of nation and belief.

The image in the drawing is based on a photograph of Iranian women marching against the Hijab Law in 1979. The photo was taken by Hengameh Golestan who captured the women’s protests during the Iranian Islamic Revolution of 1979 over the law forcing them to wear a headscarf in public; a protest that has continued until this day and lead to the Woman, Life, Freedom revolution in Iran.

- Azita Moradkhani