A pink taxi

A pink taxi

May 2, 2013

Mehdi Farhadian: at the edge of Nature.

Imagine strolling with an artist in his universe. Telling him how his world and colors affect you. At Lawrie Shabibi art gallery, I had that enjoyable experience with a startled Mehdi Farhadian. His art took me the edges of Nature.

I can recognize Farhadian's palette from a distance. The infinite melange of blues, greens and pinks translate in the ephemeral light of dusk and dawn. His canvases are huge and his brush stroke expansive. I can imagine the physical effort in his work.

Liquid blues to dive in, translucent waters against mineral rocks, or cascades with slippery footings and a bikini clad sun bather. Another canvas so cold, that the ice has turned into a frozen fluorescent blue. And there, a Douanier Rousseau canvas whose moss and foliage grow in the greenest forest of airless density. A pink phoenix and daphne escape in flight. On another canvas, a monstrous honey comb nest hangs above a still river and a fallen body, the texture of the honey visibly sticky.

Many species of birds populate Farhadian's works: here some pelicans caught in a net, there eagles swarming over golden specs and in this canvas three pheasants attempt escape from Napoleonic shooters in landscape of lawns, Washingtonian palms and mountains. Lions are slain, or are still in statuesque form.

Two canvases make exception. They are painted in black and white. A fire forest is left to gray ashes. He has deprived the fire of its burning bright colors so that we can hear the tragic roar of its destruction. On the seascape, he has stripped the sunset's precious colors to leave us w a glittery silver baroque sky, with voluminous clouds and a reflective ocean.

I expressed all this to him, and halted my speech with a single question: how have you learned the wonders of Nature?