Ayyam Gallery is pleased to present Faces of Resilience, a solo exhibition featuring Roshanak Aminelahi's recent body of work. This will be her second solo exhibition at Ayyam Gallery, following her first exhibition in 2017. Please join us for the vernissage on November 14th from 6 pm–9 pm, in presence of the artist.
This exhibition illuminates the stories of women who navigated a male-dominated society and persevered through adversity. Women who have empowered political, economic, and cultural development. Women who simply inspire.
The selected women come from diverse backgrounds, spanning different generations, continents, and life paths. Each woman carries her unique story, yet collectively, they embody a universal tale of courage. Portraits of ordinary citizens are placed next to queens and idols, highlighting the irrelevance of roles: their commonality is that extra mile they walked to bring forth bold changes. Roshanak highlights a multitude of defining acts of courage, including speaking up against racism, enforcing political and environmental activism, and normalising female leadership. These acts of defiance entail the biases these women have faced. The representation of these women amplifies the voices of resilience and reflects the systemic nature of discrimination and the varied and limitless ways women have had to resist over the years.
Throughout Art history, women have consistently been fetishised and idolised for their physical form. The artist here hides their facial traits and focuses solely on the beauty of their achievements and character. Roshanak avoids the potential for objectification or stereotyping by depicting them within intricate settings and embellishments. Using pointillism and colour-blocking techniques, Roshanak captures the distinctive features of these remarkable women. Despite the faceless portrayal, the women are still identifiable, proving they have established themselves by fulfilling their roles as key personas in their respective journeys. The portraits symbolize feminine energy and stand as a testament to societal advancement forged through years of resilience and fight for equality by women worldwide.
A series of drawings with similar strokes to the pointillist technique is also displayed. The artist employs this technique to create a horned figure chasing after the love of a bird. This is inspired by Ahmad Shamlou's poem, 'The butcher was weeping, he had fallen in love with the little canary'. The poem resonates with the recurring element of storytelling in this exhibition. The tales we discover within faceless figures and their pursuit. Both personal and social pursuits are woven together to form a shared story of resilience.
Press release courtesy Ayyam Gallery.