Blooming Lights

Blooming Lights, Solo Exhibition, O Gallery, 2020

This series starts with a brief memory: on a Chaharshanbeh Soori evening sometime during the 2000s, in a sudden and somehow comical event, during a moment shorter than a blink of the eye, I sensed the explosion of gunpowder over my face. Reviewing this memory through the years, the passage of time inevitably exaggerated how precise I remembered the event; at first, I could only see a blinding light, and then steaks of black would quickly grow over it. This memory established a network of links between all of my first-hand experiences and recorded images of fireworks and explosions, most of which had little relevance to the event in the original memory; from private parties to national anniversaries, protests, celebrations, and the like. Browsing through amateur footages and photographs of fireworks, I became increasingly fascinated by how closely fireworks and explosions were related, and how blurry the line distinguishing the two was drawn. Reviewing such notions, one questions how a material and an action are redefined based on context, time, and occasion, denoting different concepts such as danger, nationalist passion, celebration, tradition, religion, or war. This series has been heavily informed and inspired by such imagery, as well as memories related to fire, burns, and light, and their impressions make up the core themes of the current works. 

Initially, the paintings depicted frozen, tangled and intertwined lights, and the focus remained on color and form. However, darkness increasingly crept into the image literature and assumed a more prominent role. Meanwhile, trees, the landscapes, fog, smoke, and other visual elements were defined by the lighting of the portrayed moment. The series includes re-photography, a video piece, a number of artist books, dry soft pastel drawings, and oil paintings, which have been created during a two-year-long period. Each component of this series serves as an autonomous effort towards creating light and touching on its absence in images and memory. Light blooms, defining for a moment whatever comes visible.