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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 15 August 2018

Checking out Mottahedan Projects

Iranian artists Neda Zarfsaz and Golnar Adili's work on display in an exhibition titled Caught in the Game. Currently on display at the Mottahedan Projects space in Dubai. Images courtesy of Mottahedan Projects.
Iranian artists Neda Zarfsaz and Golnar Adili's work on display in an exhibition titled Caught in the Game. Currently on display at the Mottahedan Projects space in Dubai. Images courtesy of Mottahedan Projects.

Today I paid a visit to the Mottahedan Projects Gallery. If you haven’t been yet it is a rare find in Dubai. The space is dedicated to young or emerging artists who have yet to make their mark but show great promise. This kind of space is so needed in Dubai, where there is a gulf between shows of very well established artists and amateur artist-led initiatives.

At the moment, Mottahedan Projects are showing Caught in the Game, a show of two Iranian artists Neda Zarfsaz and Golnar Adili.

The majority of the gallery is dedicated to Chichast a series by artist Neda Zarfsaz, which derives its title from the ancient name for Lake Urmia in northwestern Iran. The photographic work shows a bleak and arid landscape and in the centre of the space is a frame filled with salt from the lake, which is suffering from evaporation due to environmental damage. There is also a video of herself trying to pour water from a bottomless bucket into the body of water.

“As her futile attempts to resuscitate life in the lake fail, the artist’s initiative calls for human responsibility to the environment and other species in the global community,” says the press release.

Golnar Adili, who studied architecture and whose sense of precision and control is very apparent in her work, has a series titled Tehran, a Landscape of Compressed Freedoms on display.

It comprises photographs sliced into very narrow strips and reconstituted into an optical image that are distorted but clear and bear the echoes of their subjects.

This gallery is located only a stone’s throw from the Alserkal Avenue complex and is well worth checking out for a view of something different and fresh.

* For more information visit: www.mottahedan.com

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