“Iran Modern”

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Covering the three decades leading up to the 1979 revolution, “Iran Modern” is an important and timely survey of work that is at once grounded in traditional Persian culture and thoroughly cosmopolitan. The paintings, sculpture, installations and photographs on view might overlap with Western abstraction, Pop and Conceptual art, but these terms hardly account for the nuanced ways in which Iranian artists negotiated the complex cultural politics of the Shah era. Highlights include examples of the calligraphy-derived painting of the Naqqashi Khat movement, Marcos Grigorian’s earthworks and Ghasem Hajizadeh’s large scale portraits inspired by pop imagery.