Behjat Sadr: Dusted Waters
Curator: Morad Montazami, assisted by Chloé Bonnie More
Design: with the collaboration of Pooya Abbasian
The first UK exhibition dedicated to Behjat Sadr (1924-2009), now regarded as one of Iran’s most influential and radical visual artists, brings together her masterpieces and her dramatic artistic journey against the backdrop of bitter political events. Sadr’s own career path is evidence of a cosmopolitan modernity that was emerging in and between Tehran, Rome and Paris, post World War II. After her return from Italian “Dolce Vita” to Iran, Sadr earned her reputation as one of the first women artists and art professors to appear in international biennales of the early 1960s (she took part in the Venice Biennale before the Tehran Biennale).
The exhibition highlights her remarkable kinetic works and paintings created solely using black paint (often on aluminum instead of canvas) with dazzling results. We see Sadr sharpening her abstract paintings that blend expressionistic gestures inspired by organic forms with a hard-edged industrial aesthetic.
During the final period of her artistic life (relocated in Paris, after Iranian Revolution, where she felt excluded as a foreigner) she developed a new introspective practice through collage. The display also features numerous personal photographs of her travels, in search of modern architecture or luxuriant nature, which she used in her collages.
Behdjat Sadr: Traces