In the autumn of 1990, a group of Tehran University of Art graduates and professors gathered to celebrate the opening of Afrand Gallery in a basement located in downtown Tehran. Under the direction of Roya Mashoof, the gallery offered a fresh perspective and approach to visual arts through setting up various contemporary art exhibitions. This original perspective is evident in the gallery’s decades-old strong presence in the realm of visual arts.
Afrand has always sought to enrich the taste and sensibilities of contemporary visual art audience through an ever-developing program consisting of introducing and supporting young artists, promoting artistic education, setting up research exhibitions, collaborations with local and international media, and focusing on analysis and criticism.
Such efforts along with the insights received from many art consultants and directors through the years, have defined the gallery’s vision as a particular focus on contemporary art, as a result of which it has presented various group and solo-exhibitions in Iran and aboard, and has participated in several local and international biennales, art fairs, and art auctions. Hosting artists who offer a comprehensive conceptual perspective on visual arts as well as a social approach to contemporary art, Afrand is now relying on intuition and experiment to define itself despite derivative and popular tendencies.
Afrand Gallery at Teer Art week 2019
Due to the gallery’s constant emphasis on complete independence from any diversionary and transient trends and movements, Afrand’s artists are often characterized by a commitment to an independent vision unconstrained by prevalent tendencies; thus, they usually belong to marginalized or diasporic communities whose works have not enjoyed wider audience.
This exhibition is a retrospective of the gallery’s and its artists’ works and projects over three years. Titled “The Art of the Independent Gallery,” it actually reflects the approach discussed earlier. The exhibition runs from 4 to 18 January 2019 and showcases works by the following artists in the gallery’s spaces over two floors.
Mohammad Bagher Ziaee