• Ali Akbar Sadeghi ... from the world of myth to the world of reality.
2021 Jan 04

Ali Akbar Sadeghi: from the world of myth to the world of reality.

A prolific and successful Iranian painter, Sadeghi has contributed to the art scene through his use of storytelling—using the canvas as a means of creating dazzling narratives in the style of miniature paintings. Harkening back to the work of Hieronymus Bosch, Sadeghi adopts historical Persian iconography, displaying it in a surrealist fashion that combines real and fantastical objects. A graduate of the College of Art, University of Tehran, he has built his career around the creation of bold tapestries that focus on the cultural heritage of Iran. Delving into the mind of this artist, we spoke with Sadeghi to explore the mythical world that he inhabits in his art. This is an excerpt. Find the issue here in our store.

This Orient: Your work is dazzling, can you elaborate on your painting style and your use of iconography?
Ali Akbar Sadeghi: I’m not sure what to call my style, but one would say I’m a surrealist. In my opinion I’m a dreamer and I portray what I dream—perhaps that is general enough to not easily label my work with an ‘ism’. My art is based on Iranian forms of composition in traditional paintings, with the use of Iranian iconography, cultural motifs, signs, and myths. Each icon has its own cultural meaning and plays a particular role in my paintings; for example the presence of different colours implies different meanings.
Dreaming of battles must be pretty gruelling. Do you dream of winners or heroic deeds? Do your dreams and snapshots try to confront the beholder?
In my paintings both the loser and the winner are the same; however, I have portrayed such contradictions in inverted formats. For me, war is the product of a savage mind rising up from a time long ago; for this reason, you always see a juxtaposition of humour and naive relationships between the elements in my paintings. Many of my works becomes self-portraits for the viewer, as they begin to take on the roles of the characters in my paintings.

Find the whole article inside Vol.3 of This Orient “The Greater Middle East”. Find the issue here in our store.