Four talented young Iranian artists bring their works to an exhibition at Largo das Artes


Largo das Artes is pleased to invite everyone to the opening of the exhibition which marks the end of our "Iran_Rio Art Connection" and will take place on Thursday, 25th September, at 7pm.

The heterogeneous universe of artists that make up this exhibition illustrates the diversity of references to inform the current artistic practice in Iran.

The contemporary scenario of the country seems built like a patchwork quilt that juxtaposes nostalgia for the past to a seemingly insurmountable present, in which contemporary art and the connections with the West function as an escape to a reality permeated by war and violence on various levels.

In this context, Shadi Ghadirian exhibits a series of photographs that, on the one hand harks back to the Flemish still life, whilst juxtaposing images of current fashion magazines. She combines objects of consumerism with an arsenal of contemporary media imagery. Amin Aghaei, conceptually explores in painting, video and photography the split, dull and chaotic experiences of those who live in a warzone. Ali Zanjani, from archival images of 16mm film, combines references to Iranian women of yesterday and today in the “Pregnancy/Static series”. He reapropriates images that capture feminine beauty in the contrast to the image of the veiled woman steriotypes of the Middle East and the exposure of female attributes in the West; Farnaz Jahanbin makes use of banners, reproducing iconic images of ancient and modern history of Iran, which she uses as a background to graphic interventions in painting with traditional calligraphy of her country. Her work  paradoxically has a resemblance to the street art produced in the West.

During the opening of the exhibition, there will be a brief concert of traditional Persian music with the participation of the artist Farnaz Jahanbin and pianist Tomas Gonzaga. The exhibition continues until 31st October at Largo das Artes and the admission is free. (Visiting times: Monday to Friday, from 11 to 6pm).

The "Iran_Rio Art Connection" project is an initiative of Largo das Artes sponsored by the Dutch institution Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development.

Opening of the final exhibition 
When: Thursday, 25th September
Time: 7pm
Where: Largo das Artes 
(Rua Luis de Camões, 2 - Centro)
Exhibition continues until 31st October
Visiting times: Monday to Friday, from 11 to 6 pm.
Free admission

To learn more about the artists and the “Iran_Rio Art Connection” project, click here.

IRAN_RIO ART CONNECTION - The cacophony of noise from vendors selling their wares from peanuts to headphones greeted the artists on the train from Centro to Zona Norte. Shadi Ghadirian, Amin Aghaie and Ali Zanjani were heading to an invitation to talk to around 20 students in their final year at the Pedro II High School in the Realengo suburb of Rio de Janeiro. The school is one of the oldest in the North Zone of Rio and was set up as a model for other state schools in Brazil.

The artists were attending the class of Raphael Fonseca who has been teaching the students art history through the lens of global photographers. He has been particularly keen to introduce them to non-Western art forms and concepts. The students had already studied the work of Shadi Ghadirian so were thrilled to get to meet her and discuss her work with her in person. They were also mesmerised by the work of Amin Aghaei and his magical realism paintings.  His concepts of using Iranian myths and legends as the backdrop for paintings of people lost in their own space with a melancholic feel depicting a loss of identity, introduced the students to a new form of East art and new cultural paradigms.  The work of Ali Zanjani introduced to them the concept of using archive as photography.

The artists had a rare opportunity to see a part of Rio that foreigners rarely get to see. They were thrilled by the response of the students and especially a song they sang for them at the end showcasing their own talents. See video below.

IRAN_RIO ART CONNECTION - A special talk with Iranian artist Shadi Ghadirian was held at Largo das Artes last Friday (12), as part of the parallel activities of our “Iran_Rio Art Connection” project, a special art residency which brings to Rio de Janeiro four talented young Iranian artists. During the event, a film about Shadi’s background and works was screened and the artist could answer questions from the audience.

Journalist Claudia Antunes, editor of the magazine Piauí, was at Largo das Artes as a special guest to interview Shadi and mediate the debate with the public. For Claudia, Shadi’s work challenges the stereotypical view of Iran and Iranian society prevalent in the West through photos which reflect the country’s history from a female critical point of view. “I found it interesting when she said that the Persian traditions are more important than religion in defining what is to be an Iranian,” she added. 

Some works of Shadi Ghadirian will be shown in the final exhibition, which marks the end of this special residency on the 25th of September. The "Iran_Rio Art Connection" project is an initiative of Largo das Artes, sponsored by the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development. More information here.



The artist Ricardo Càstro and the director of Largo das Artes, Consuelo Bassanesi, during  the award ceremony 

The award ceremony of the 2014 FOCUS BRADESCO ART RIO PRIZE took place during the opening of the ArtRio Fair last week. The three selected artists will have the opportunity to participate in residencies and have exhibitions in three important institutions of the current scenario.

The winners are: Anna Costa e Silva, Renato Hofer and Ricardo Càstro. The selection committee consisted of Bernardo Mosqueira, director of the Award; Maria Montero, curator and manager of Phosphorus Space (São Paulo); Consulelo Bassanesi and Miguel Sayad, directors of Largo das Artes (Rio de Janeiro); and Fabiana de Moraes, curator and manager of Sens’artLab (Paris).

Largo das Artes is pleased to offer a place in our International Art Residency Programme to the artist Ricardo Càstro. The residency will last 6 weeks and a final show in the gallery space will mark the end of the process.

Ricardo lives and works between São Paulo and New York. He conceived the "Abravana" movement, which is the essence of his work. During his residency at Largo das Artes, Ricardo intends to deepen his research, which deals mainly with manipulable objects and the presence of the body in space. "Abravana" , in Ricardo’s own terms, means something like “free yourself and go for it”.

Welcome to Largo das Artes, Ricardo Càstro! More information to be posted soon.

Iran_Rio Art Connection - some pictures of the first week of activities - LargoLAB with artist Felippe Moraes and meetings with curator Bernardo José de Souza

Largo das Artes “Iran-Rio Art Connection” has the support of Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development. More information here.

"Ópera_Ato 2" brings artist Rodolpho Parigi and his alter ego Fancy Violence to Largo das Artes


Artist Rodolpho Parigi, through his alter ego Fancy Violence, presents the performance "Ópera_Ato 2".

Fancy Violence is an anti-heroine, relentless in her iconoclastic mission, destroying myths, frauds collectors and their masterpieces. Her dubious past, filled with shadows and misleading clues, is the work of the collective imagination, whether artists, curators or curious - one tableaux vivant of graphic situations such as fantastic, a collection of souvenirs that were lent to this creature of plastic and ink, lingerie and blades.

Far beyond giving or taking shape, and all plastic expedients committed to an ontology of being and of the arts, Fancy Violence implodes the artist in order to forge a being whose survival may well last for centuries or moments. It annihilates the painting, the geometry and the previous work of Parigi to ensure new life to this being that feeds on waste pictorial fragments of history and sexual outbursts; while blasting the screen, she gives life to the monsters previously enshrined in the oil by the painter.

"Ópera_Ato 2" is part of the exhibition "to see what is coming", which is being shown at Largo das Artes until this Saturday (13). The exhibition is curated by Bernardo José de Souza and Michelle Sommer and also brings the works of the artists: Audrey Cottin, Daniel Steegmann Mangrané, David Cronenberg, Eadweard Muybridge, Fancy Violence, Gisela Motta and Leandro Lima, Gustavo Ferro, Harun Farocki, Laura Lima, Le Corbusier, Luis Roque, Neil Beloufa Cloud - Art and Technology Rural Station / Cinthia Mendonça and Vianna, Pablo Ferretti and Rodolpho Parigi.

"to see what is coming"
 was conceived as part of the investigation of the notions of post-humanismplastic destruction and second nature, flirting with science fiction to explore art through our relationship with the future, either by incorporating the past or debating the present. Learn more here.

Ópera_Ato 2, Fancy Violence
When: Saturday (13th Sept)
Time: 7 pm
Where: Largo das Artes
Rua Luis de Camões, 2 - Centro, Rio de Janeiro
Free admission


Largo das Artes and ArtRio are pleased to invite you all to "A Conversation with Artist Shadi Ghadirian", which will be held this Friday (12) at 11 am at Largo das Artes. She will be interviewed by the journalist Claudia Antunes *, editor of the Brazilian magazine Piauí, and the event will be open to questions from the public.

Shadi Ghadirian is an important Iranian artist whose work has been exhibited in major museums and galleries worldwide, including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Born in 1974 in Tehran, Shadi studied photography at Azad University. Her artistic practice focuses on matters involving the traditional and modern culture of her country, especially the role of Muslim women in Iran, a subject that still reverberates around the world.

Shadi was invited to take part in "Iran_Rio Art Connection" project and she will be in Rio de Janeiro throughout the month of September participating in a special residence with three other talented Iranian artists. On the 25th of September, an exhibition will show the result of this experience. Aiming to enhance the inter-cultural dialogue and promote networking between artists from the Middle East and Brazil, "Iran_Rio Art Connection" is a project by Largo das Artes with the support of the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development.

A Conversation with Artist Shadi Ghadirian 
Interviwed by Cláudia Antunes 
Where: Largo das Artes (Rua Luis de Camões, 2 - Centro)
When: This Friday (12.09) 
Time: 11 am 
Free admission



Our Iranian residents Amin Agahei, Shadi Ghadirian and Ali Zanjani visit Cildo Meireles’ exhibition "Pling Pling" at Luisa Strina Gallery in Sao Paulo. Largo das Artes “Iran_Rio Art Connection” project is sponsored by the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development. More information here.


Come along tomorrow (6th) for another edition of TIRADENTES CULTURAL, an initiative of the cultural venues located in the vicinity of Tiradentes Square, with the purpose of enhancing the movement of people and the cultural activities in this area.

Largo das Artes has prepared a special programming for the day. The "Laboratory of Destruction" is a collective action whose purpose is to study and share techniques and reconfiguration of metamorphosis, from the following question: "Reactions, breakups, electrolysis - which new paths, new modes of being and feelings can we find in the destruction?" The public will be encouraged to experiment with chemical and physical devices around the theme of destruction.

The “Laboratory of Destruction” is part of the side events of the exhibition "to see what is coming", which runs until 13th September at Largo das Artes

"Nuvem" - Rural Station of Art and Technology
When: Saturday, Sept 6, from 3 pm
Where: Largo São Francisco 

To learn more, visit Nuvem’s wiki link here.

Welcome Shadi Ghadirian, Aghaei Amin, Ali Zanjani and Farnaz Jahanbin! First stop: 31st International São Paulo Biennial. Next Saturday (6), the Iranian artists participating in the project "Iran_Rio Art Connection" (a partnership of Largo das Artes with the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development) will land in Rio to start their residences. Stay tuned here on our blog for more updates! To learn more about the project and access the programming of parallel activities and events, follow this link!

Welcome Shadi Ghadirian, Aghaei Amin, Ali Zanjani and Farnaz Jahanbin! First stop: 31st International São Paulo Biennial. Next Saturday (6), the Iranian artists participating in the project "Iran_Rio Art Connection" (a partnership of Largo das Artes with the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development) will land in Rio to start their residences. Stay tuned here on our blog for more updates! To learn more about the project and access the programming of parallel activities and events, follow this link!