NEW YORK—Throughout March, Leila Heller Gallery must have looked a lot like the inside of an Iranian mosque where the walls are tiled with elaborate, symbolic murals. “Haft Khan: The Seven Labors of Rostamtile” included two wall-sized murals and a set of four works on paper by Khosrow Hassanzadeh. The exhibit celebrates Iranian manhood and pays homage to the wrestler, an iconic figure in Persian culture. The layered works feature calligraphic Farsi and bold colors and metallics.
“Haft Khan” was on view at Leila Heller, which specialized in artists from the Middle East, from March 1 to March 31, 2012. Hassanzadeh lives and works in Tehran and London and the exhibit was his first in New York.
Photos by Arts Observer
Above, Detail of “Remember.” Top of page, “Remember,” 2010 (mixed media on ceramic tile). According to the gallery, the mural includes framed images of the iconic figures Imam Ali and the Iranian Olympic wrestling champion, Takhti. The background is covered in whirling Farsi script, which repeats “Ya Ali Madad,” or “help me Ali,” a Shiite prayer.
“Haft Khan,” 2010 (mixed media on ceramic tile). According to the gallery, the 28-foot-long ceramic mural, consists of 728 tiles colored in an intensely saturated cerulean layered with silkscreen and resin.
From left, “Untitled III (from Remember),” 2010; “Untitled II (from Remember),”; “Untitled I (from Remember),”; and “Untitled IV (from Remember),” (all four 2010, silkscreen and gold leaf on paper).
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Powerful and monumental.