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Zeinab Hashemi | Artist Interview

Zeinab Hashemi | Artist Interview

Posted by in Interviews . 1 Comments.



1.) Your paintings are often large in scale, although you have created some smaller pieces for collectors recently. How does the challenge of a large canvas differ from that of a smaller piece?


I enjoy the challenge of working with detail. I am able to explore this further on larger canvas', which have been described as momentous due to their size. The smaller works I have created contain a different quality as my focus is more on surface detail and the colours used. I am more accustomed to painting on larger canvas', so working in a smaller size can present more of a challenge for me.


2.) There is a strong aesthetic of lighting in your work. Talk to us about your use of lighting?


I have always been influenced by classic painters such as Caravaggio, Rembrandt and Friedrich whose works possess a high contrast of fine lighting. My admiration of this aesthetic carries through into my own work. My use of light also often contains a subtext. I have found living in the City of Tehran to be full of contradictory tensions. This is presented in my work in the large dark surfaces with the hope for a better life revealed by small pockets of light on the canvas. I am interested in placing two contradictory visual elements beside each other for this affect.


3.) A popular statement throughout contemporary Asian art is the rapid development & changing nature of the landscape. You tend to comment on this during the period of transition, the construction. What attracts you to this period of change?


For me the image of construction can be emotive of contrasting feelings. From the excitement and anticipation that can greet the initial build through to the anxiety experienced when unfinished structures are presented like torn bodies. The admission of another architectural ideology's failure to translate. These images of Construction are only ever temporarily visible as the City breaths, taking on the charisma of large structures appearing from the soil. Construction in my native Tehran never stops. The visual translation of the city's modern spirit is one of uncertainty from the tunnels, unfinished buildings, or the sight of intertwined buildings breeding skepticism and concern.




4.) How has moving to England influenced your work?


Moving to England has influenced my life & therefore my art dramatically. My perspective has changed, which has been represented in my works. I am influenced by my surroundings & began to paint more colourfully. London is alive with much more colour than Tehran, which is a grey city. I started a series of paintings, which focused on the City & not it's Construction anymore. This has helped me to view each City from a greater distance. My recent works are certainly full of colour in comparison to the works I completed in Tehran & therefore take on a different aesthetic.


5.) How does the European art scene differ from that of Iran?


The European art scene differs from that in Iran. The first thing I noticed when arriving in Europe is the number of artists, galleries, studios and art institutions. Therefore the volume of capital that is circulating the art world in Europe is much higher than in the middle east or specifically in Iran. However, the social relations in the art scene in Iran and England are quite similar. In Iran if you have no connections and relations you cannot grow in the art scene even if your work has good quality and high standard. I thought the situation would be different in London this was why I thought I would have no problem introducing my art in London but the situation is the same as it was back in Iran. Even if you are talented in art you need some connections to enter and be accepted in the art scene. Good artworks is the first step not the last one. But in general I believe that art people in London are professional and have great taste. I believe in good and strong technique in painting and I think there are lots of people in England who feel the same as me about painting. In Iran technique is not so important as it is in London. Therefore I think I can grow in London much more than in Iran.





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