Masoud Akhavanjam

October 12 - November 8

Janet Rady Fine Art is pleased to present Coexistence, a selection of eleven sculptures by the acclaimed Iranian born artist Masoud Akhavanjam, in his first solo exhibition at Cromwell Place in London. Akhavanjam’s mesmerising metallic sculptures comment on the relationship between abstraction and form, the constant struggle for harmony, and the psychological and physical battle between the mind and brute force.

As a sculptor, Akhavanjam’s expertise in the material properties of polished stainless steel and bronze come to the fore in his artistic practice. His passion for the materiality of the metals he works with, particularly stainless steel, started early in life when he assisted at his father’s manufacturing company for household appliances in 1997. Combined with his extensive knowledge and experience using metal and its scientific properties, Akhavanjam’s works range widely in their form, scale, subject matter and situational context. Coexistence exhibits both his more small-scale domestic pieces, as well as his monumental sculptures, and thus, the exhibition, his first in London, embodies a central tenet of Akhavanjam’s sculptural practice.

Akhavanjam’s cast, polished and steel sculptures approach and comment on contemporary socio-cultural issues facing our common humanity today. The prescient threats to our civilization that are a consequence of climate change and environmental destruction are a consistent force and source of inspiration in Akhavanjam’s work. In the artist’s opinion, it is the very foundations of consumerism, wealth creation and the never-ending competition between companies and nations in terms of hedonistic economic growth that must be restructured for the sake of future generations.

The tortious, writhing limbs of Akhavanjam’s recent Conflictus sculptures are at once entwined animals and equally abstract forms that permutate as you walk around them. The struggle they are interlocked in overwhelms the viewer – we are led to consider where to look and how to interpret these forms. The lack of a cohesive or comprehensive view in many ways relates to the multiple environmental, social and cultural crises that Akhavanjam approaches in his artistic production. As the artist himself questions, can these forms and figures be disentangled to create a clearer view? Would this create the solution to the problems we face, or just another paradox?

Contrastingly, Natura, examines the disjunctions between humans and the natural world. The choice and execution of a powerful, dynamically posed rampant bear forcefully symbolises the beauty, purity and strength of nature. As Akhavanjam says, ‘No one ever gets bored in nature, no matter how much time they spend there.’ Unfortunately, despite contemporary culture’s obsession for the natural world, our incessant greed is disturbing the very essence of the ecosystems we claim to love. According to Akhavanjam, here lies the very meaning of Natura. His bear symbolises the intrinsic strength of these natural forces over humanity.

Born in 1969 in Tehran, Iran, Akhavanjam was educated in Germany and the USA. After some time managing the Design Department at his family’s Iranian manufacturing company, he established his own workshop and began producing sculptures in 2011.  Using his in-depth knowledge of the scientific properties of metal, particularly stainless steel, Akhavanjam creates artworks ranging in scale from intimate domestic pieces to monumental works, balancing the strength of the material with the delicacy of the cast form. Akhavanjam lives and works between Tehran, London and Athens.

His works have been exhibited widely in Iran and the UAE as wells as at Palazzo Bembo, Palazzo Mora and the Giardini della Marinaressa in the context of the Venice Biennale in 2017, 2019, and 2022 (where his works remain on display until November). Recent exhibitions in the UK include 2021 ANTHEM, Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens, Cornwall, Cotswold Sculpture Park, Cirencester, 2022 Doddington Hall, Lincolnshire and Carden Park, Cheshire.


View the exhibition catalogue

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