• Metamorphsis

In the recent exhibition of Ben Gallery, Elaheh Farmanian has shown her paintings after three years. In this exhibition named “Metamorphsis”, Farmanian presented her expressive and figurative artworks to the audience with the use of gray colored range of paintings.

In Elaheh Farmanian’s artworks, the world begins by the face a woman among many other people. This figure which is rather the centerpiece to all her paintings and sometimes is the starting point of some of them can be quite realistic, abandoned, and primitive. There is a woman who is the central character in most of the artworks. This character is repetitively seen in different artworks and shows herself in a small shape among many miniature faces that exist all over the painting. Sometimes, these faces become living things and they only reflect the main characters in some other ways. As if, they are reflecting the metamorphosis of the central image. 

The events passing through life or in other words the slow death of life is constantly what Farmanian’s artworks reflects. She tries to show the metamorphosis and deterioration of life in the faces of her characters. In order to do this, she benefits from printing, acrylic, and extensive use of gray color.

Farmanian uses the word “art therapy” for some of her artworks, as if she is healing the injuries of past events through the use of different layers of colors. That’s why you can recognize a narrative theme in some of her paintings. She sometimes narrates some hidden stories throughout her paintings to her audience. Generally, Farmanian’s artworks moves between a narrow border of image creating and painting, like the Shagal’s artworks that are neither a complete narration nor a fully painting.

She already has some image creating experiences in her resume and in this exhibition and among some of her artworks, she goes toward narration again. However, the artwork does not turn into a full narration because of some inner feelings and personal reasons. In other words, she tries her best to make her paintings more personal by emphasizing on her own feelings but rather leave the interpretations to the audience and their imaginations.

In fact, her artworks are made of her inner feelings as if each one of her paintings are the narration of one past moment or previous memory. However, the connection between these paintings to past or future is totally unknown. Therefore, the narration of the paintings is left for the imagination in a way that make them far away from the true image creating. In fact, most of figures in Farmanian’s artworks have characteristics but still they don’t fit into a story.

Another accordance between Farmanian and Shagal’s artworks is the use of curved lines, and mobile combinations that are as the same as the theater ones. Her interest in theater has a great impact on her paintings. This interest specifically shows itself in two of her paintings in the exhibition. The presence of theater elements, focused lightings like the ones on the theater’s scene, and the existence of many audiences directly shows her connection to the theater and Shagal’s artworks. Men becomes motif in some of her paintings or doubleganger in some others which both follow a specific pattern.

Remaining point for her works is the ‘space’. She does very well in extending varied forms of the paintings and making different colored layers for them but she benefits less of this feature for creating some spaces in her paintings, we can easily say that, her artworks are not deep enough. The artworks also end around the central character of the painting and in most of the works the negative space around the central character shows itself easily.

There are also some characters looking straightly at us from behind the frame. Perhaps, those are the “forgotten” who are mentioned by Farmanian in her speech. The kind of people who are always pushed to sides and live somewhere far away from us. However, they are connected to a moment or a memory and we can never call them “neutral” as like most of the other characters. These forgotten people are challenging for the audience, demands for their visual reaction easily, attracts attention, and are in contrast to the main character of the work.

She plays multi-level games with the colored layers. She uses the layers to combine or separate the spaces between the imagination and reality, inside or outside. Her artworks continuously reflect her individuality and feelings derived from outside. She could have successfully made these feelings came true by the use of colors and a canvas.

Elaheh Farmanian was born in 1363 and graduated in graphics. She has been involved with paintings and image creating for over 16 full years. She got the first place in Sherveh and Peace Festival and in 1394 and 1396 respectively. In this exhibition she shows how skillful she can be in using technics and connecting the outside to the inside self and actually she could create a daily image for daily events, griefs, and experiences.

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