Hesam
Rahmanian

Hesam Rahmanian
Bat, Octopus and a Protester, 2017
Acrylic on 3 triangle canvases
Bat: 44 x 19 x 35 cm / Octopus : 90 x 35 x 71 cm / A protester : 50 x 20 x 40 cm
Unique artwork
© Sebastiano Pellion di Persano

Hesam Rahmanian
Your Gaze Across My Face... , 2017
Collage of leftover acrylic paint and paper on cardboard (triptych)
40,5 x 90 cm overall
Unique artwork

Hesam Rahmanian
Absentminded Geometry, 2015
Collage of detritus of magazine paper and acrylic and ink on paper
51 x 40,5 cm
Unique artwork

Hesam Rahmanian
Absentminded Geometry, 2015
Collage of detritus of magazine paper and acrylic and ink on paper
51 x 40,5 cm
Unique artwork

Hesam Rahmanian
Grinding Teeth, 2017
Collage of leftover acrylic paint, magazine and ink on paper
37 x 23 cm
Unique artwork

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Hesam Rahmanian (born Knoxville, 1980)

The corner is important to Hesam Rahmanian’s recent work, as is conviviality, wordplay, and experimentation. His work is about artmaking as care, and artmaking as play. In Rahmanian’s shaped canvases, the corner is a temporal device, a way to slow down time. We approach a painting at the edge of a wall: we see a line, then turn a corner, and see it unfold into a thing, a place, or a being. To paint in a corner is to relinquish the ease of a flat surface in favor of a more complicated negotiation. However, for Rahmanian, it’s a productive constraint.

A guiding philosophy behind the production of these works is an ontology that is oriented towards a radical equality between objects (object-oriented ontology), where there is no distinction or difference between human beings, non-human life, and objects which populate the world. In this way, the works themselves tend away from the heroism and centrality of the artist and the work of art. Instead, they focus on objects marginalised in the collective environment – a pair of pliers, a chair, the space between the shower and sink, spiders, and boxes.

The works that emerge from Rahmanian's practice take on what may be called a kind of narrative independence, that is, the ability to exist beyond the viewer's own story and perception of the world. Even as your gaze moves elsewhere, they do not cease to be. On the contrary, they exude unmistakable presence, and they, despite your trajectory, continue to exist. Rahmanian’s work opens on to the viewer as a host to a guest. There are no illusions, tricks, or rhetorical flourishes; the wordplay is gentle and the process is clear. Painting is not about mastering the world, or leaving a deep, subjective mark; there is no nostalgia for the theatrics of the past century. It is a cohabitation with the world: to live in a corner of it, in harmony with its inhabitants.

Rahmanian has held solo exhibitions at Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde, Dubai (2013, 2019), Paradise Row, London (2011) and Traffic, Dubai (2010). He works collectively with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, and the three artists also work independently and together in a collective that constantly grows and contracts to coordinate friends, writers and artists. The collective has presented solo exhibitions at Frye Art Museum, Seattle (2019), Officine Grandi Riparazioni (OGR), Turin (2018), MACBA, Barcelona (2017), Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), Boston (2015), Kunsthalle, Zurich (2015), Den Frie Center for Contemporary Art, Copenhagen (2015), Busan Biennale, South Korea (2018), Liverpool biennale, UK (2016) and The 8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Brisbane (2015), among others.

Solo exhibitions

2019
The Rain Doesn’t know Friends from Foes, collective exhibition with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, Frye Art Museum, Seattle, USA

2018
Night of Another Spring, collective exhibition with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, In Situ Fabienne Leclerc, Paris, FR
Forgive me, distant wars, for bringing flowers home, collaborative exhibition
with Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian, Officine Grandi Riparazioni
(OGR), Turin, IT
From Sea to Dawn, collaborative exhibition with Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam
Rahmanian, Galerie Krinzinger, Vienna, AU

2017
The Maids, collaborative exhibition with Rokni Haerizadeh and Hesam Rahmanian,
Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, ES

2015

The Birthday Party, collaborative exhibition with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), Boston, US
Those Who Love Spiders, and Let Them Sleep in Their Hair, collaborative exhibition with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, Den Frie Centre of Contemporary Art, Copenhagen, DK
All the Rivers Run Into The Sea. Over. / Copy. Yet, The Sea Is Not Full. Over., collaborative exhibition with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, 8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, AU
The Fall, collaborative show with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, Rodeo Gallery, Istanbul, TR
I won't wait for grey hairs and worldly cares to soften my views, Callicoon Fine Arts, New York, US
Slice A Slanted Arc Into Dry Paper Sky, collaborative show with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, Kunsthalle, Zurich, CH

2014
The Exquisite Corpse Shall Drink the New Wine, collaborative show with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde, Dubai, AE
Now the Dove and the Leopard Wrestle at Five in the Afternoon, Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde, Dubai, AE

2012
I Put It There, You name It, collaborative exhibition with Ramin and Rokni Haerizadeh, Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde, Dubai, AE

2011
Till the End of Dawn, Paradise Row, London, UK

2010
Hit Me With Your War Tune, solo show, Traf fic, Dubai, AE
2009 Iran's Social Disorder, Art Ten20, Sacramento, US

Group exhibitions

2019
The Warmth of Other Suns, curated by Massimilano Gioni and Natalie Bell, The Phillips Collection, Washington DC (Upcoming), USA

2018
Busan Biennial 2018
, Busan, South Korea, KR
Mountain of Tongues, BACKLIT Gallery, Nottingham, AN

2017
Rock, Paper, Scissors: Positions in Play, National Pavilion of United Arab Emirates, 57th Venice Biennale, IT
Speak, Lokal, Kunsthalle, Zurich, CH
The Creative Act: Performance, Process, Presence, Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, AE

2016
Social Calligraphies, Zacheta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, PL
Domestic Affairs: Reshaped, Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde, Dubai, AE
9th Liverpool Biennial: Festival of Contemporary Art, Liverpool, UK
Condo, collaborative exhibition with Callicoon Fine Arts and Rodeo, London, UK

2015
Nice Drawings, Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde, Dubai, AE

2013
Silk, Highlights Gallery, San Francisco, US

2011
MOP CAP, Royal College of Art, London, UK
How Lucky We Are, Angel at Our Table, God in Our Car, Galerie Krinzinger, Vienna, AT
Taking Sides, Paddle8, New York, US
The State: Social / Antisocial?, Traf fic and The Third Line, Dubai, AE

2010
Fuck Ups, Fables and Fiascos, Galerie Caprice Horn, Berlin, DE

2009
Annual Senior Spring Show, Sacramento State University, California, US

2007
East Meets West, Artwork SF, San Francisco, US

2003
Digital Art Show, Ridley Gallery, Sacramento, US

2002
Digital Art Show, Ridley Gallery, Sacramento, US

1999
Barg Gallery, Tehran, IR

Residence

2014
Rauschenberg Residency, Captiva, Florida, US

Awards

2015
Fundació Han Nefkens/MACBA Award, Barcelona, ES

2009
AIGA Enrichment Scholarship, California, US
Best Portfolio, Department of Design, Sacramento State University, California, US

2008
Fred G Wade Scholarship, Sacramento AD Club, California, US

Collections

Barjeel Art Foundation, Sharjah, AE
LACMA, Los Angeles, US

Publications

2018                   
forgive me distant wars for bringing flower home,
2018, Officine Grandi Riparazioni (OGR), Turin

2016                  
Her Majesty?,
2016, Editions Patrick Frey

2015
Ramin Haerizadeh Rokni Haerizadeh Hesam Rahmanian.
Mousse Publishing

Education

2009
Bachelor of Science, Graphic Design, Sacramento State University, California, US
2005
Applied Art and Design, Sierra College, California, US
1999
Diploma in Fine Art, School of Visual Arts, Teheran, IR