Solo exhibition of Kamyar Kafaie
Opening at Aaran Projects on 20th April 2018
At the edge of what is real and surreal in Iranian life today, Kamyar Kafaie criticizes the vulgarity and ignorance that has become a part of life in Iran and particularly in Tehran’s northern rich neighborhoods. In his painstakingly detailed paintings he shows us the abhorrent behavior of parts of society that is being copied by the less privileged ones. His meticulous paintings are sarcastic commentary, defining the divides in Iranian society better than any sociologist, journalist or commentator. His observations and examinations of Iranian prejudices, approaches and weaknesses result in intricate narratives that at first glance appear cheerful and filled with color, but at close examination betray the depth of decadence and dysfunction in society.
Combining highly developed draughtsman ship and a comic book influenced visual vocabulary; artist chronicles the contemporary life within a geography that he knows well. He holds a mirror to society and tackles subjects such as social status, identity, corruption, conspicuous consumption, populism and ignorance. Next to his figurative focus and cultivation of narrative, his approach is refreshingly honest. With exciting details he shows his concerns and fears and his saucy sense of fun reveals the truth about certain layers of society. In his strong narrative focus and overcrowded pictorial spaces and in absence of perspective, a heightened reality is created, where meanings and scales are displaced.
Kamyar Kafaie has been consistent, emotional and humorous throughout the last few years that he has focused on his practice. As a chronicler he is a witness and a portrayer of Iran’s situation now. His engagement with society is serious and just like millions of Iranians he questions the present status quo and reveals his fears for future.