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Assar Art Gallery Nov Dec 2013 Iman Afsarian On The Odds And Ends Of No Significance 02
Tehran
 حرف هایی درباره ی "بر بساطی که بساطی نیست"
هر بار نقاشی های ایمان افسریان را می بینم دلم می خواهد دستم را بر کارها بکشم تا خاک آن ها را بگیرم. دلم می خواهد نفس عمیقی بکشم تا بتوانم گرد و غبارشان را بروبم. انگار چیزهای درون این قاب ها همه گی از جان رفته اند و یا آن قدر پا خورده اند که از نفس افتاده اند. جهان ایمان افسریان ستایش این از کار افتاده گی و بی رمقی ست. و یا شاید حال و هوایی ست که دیگر زندگی اش نمی کنیم. آن چه این کارها را نزدیک و ملموس می کند تا بوی نمور آن ها را حس کنیم، زندگی و پرسه ی خود اوست در میان این اشیا و در همین کوچه پس کوچه ها. 
او فارغ از کاربرد و چیستی اشیا، به خود چیزها، به خود رنگ ها، و به خود نور و سایه ها نگاه می کند. گاهی می توان حس کرد او لا به لای این چیزها نفس می کشد، برآن ها دستی می کشد و گردشان را می روبد تا آن ها هم نفسی بکشند. او گاهی با عکس به چیزها نزدیک می شود و گاهی با نقاشی ما را به درون آن ها می کشد. گاهی هم دوربین نقاش را از چیزها دور می کند. 
او معمولاً از دوربین بهره می گیرد تا کادر مناسب ، جای ایستادن و خیره ماندن را پیدا کند و یا در تاریکی با نور اوپک طراحی کند و یا در روشنایی با پرینت هایی که با رنگ های متفاوت چاپ شده ان ، زمان و حال و هوای دل نشین خودش را بیابد تا بر بوم بگذارد. او با دوربین زمان را متوقف می کند تا رنگ ها را ثابت نگه دارد. در طراحی عمیقاً به عکاسی  وفادار است و در رنگ گذاری به نقاشی.  او گاهی هم بی دوربین این زمان سیالِ به دست نیامدنی را نظاره می کند و زمان بسته ی عکس را با رنگ باز می کند. گاهی عصر است و رنگ ها خاکستری بنفش گاهی روز است و رنگ ها سبز خاکستری یا به اصطلاح عکاسان گاه ماژنتا است و گاه سایان. او فضا ها یا چیزهایی را انتخاب می کند که به خودی خود تصاویر مرسوم عکاسی اند. همین که تخت و کمد و چراغ مهتابی و جای قاب و سینی و چکه ی آب و لکه ی آفتاب اند کافی ست که دیده شوند. زمان در این فضاها ایستاده است، چیزها از جان رفته اند و همین که گوشه ای از زنده گی افتاده اند بس است. او به این چیزها از رو به رو نگاه می کند، نه از بالا و نه از پایین. خنثی.  دوربین را که کنار می گذارد، با اشیا بی واسطه زندگی می کند. سینی و کتاب را لمس می کند و زمانی که بر آن ها گذشته است را می بیند. هر ساعت،  نوری که بر آن ها تابیده است را هنگام رنگ گذاشتن مزه مزه می کند .  می توان سرمای سینی را هفت بعد از ظهر زمستان با دلی گرفته لمس کرد، می توان نُه صبح بر روی آن چای گرم صبحانه را نوشید.  او در کار سینی- چیزی به این پیش پا افتاده گی، صلب و بی موضوع- به گمان من بیش از هر کار دیگری به ما امکان دیدن و تجربه کردن می دهد.  شاید اگر بخواهم این کار را با کارهای گذشته ی او قیاس کنم، آینه ها را ببینم که به همین ساده گی روبه روی ما بر دیوار یا بوم آویزان اند. گر چه در آینه ها همین که  نقاش در آن ها دیده نمی شود موضوع است که رنگ می گیرد (و شاید از این حیث به عکاسی نزدیک می شود). آن چه در کار آینه ها اهمیت پیدا می کند دیدن آینه است و غیاب نقاش و ما و ذهن پرسش گر هر دوی ما. ولی آن چه در کار سینی مدام با ما می ماند خود کنش نقاشی ست و خود مساله ی دیدن. 
کارهای ایمان افسریان هر چه بیشتر گذشته است، هر چه بیشتر قلم کشیده است و رنگ گذاشته است، طعم و بوی بیشتری به خود گرفته است. مهم نیست که کارهای او شبیه به عکس های "خوب" اند یا نه، مهم نیست که موضوع در کارهای او جایی دارد یا نه و مهم نیست که کارهای او تکراری اند. آن چه به گمان من اهمیت دارد این است که تکرار یا اگر بتوانم بگویم تکنیک جای خود را به روح کار داده است. کارها با این تکرار ها جان گرفته اند. و نقاشی ها با روح نقاش تنیده اند. 
حالا که دوباره نگاهی به این نقاشی ها می اندازم می بینم چه خوب که این کارها خاک گرفته اند، چه خوب که بی جان گوشه ای افتاده اند  و چه خوب که با این حال، تمنای رسیدن هیچ بارانی هم نیست که بر این بساط ببارد. 
غزاله هدایت – پاییز 1392  
A Few Words on the Odds and Ends of No Significance
Every time I see Iman Afsarian‘s paintings, I have an urge to dust them. I would like to take a deep breath and sweep their dust away. It seems like all the living things within the frames are lifeless and everything has been wilted from weariness. Iman’s world is all about praising this very obsolete and fatigue. Or it might be in praise of a mood in which we are no longer accustomed to. What makes these works tangible to us to sense them, however, is the artist’s constant wandering within the realm of the objects, and through these old forgotten alleys.
Regardless of the functionality and nature of these objects, he looks at the objects themselves, their colors, lights and shadows. Sometimes it conveys the sense that he breathes between these bits and pieces, caresses them, and dusts them to give them life, love and to let them breathe too. At times he gets close to his subjects through a photograph and at other times he takes us with him into his world via a painting and sometimes the camera detaches the painter from the objects. 
Using a camera, he seeks the right frame, the place to stand and the right angles to stare at. In the darkness, he uses an opaque projector to draw, or at light, he uses printouts reproduced in different colors to choose his preferred time and mood to portray on the canvas. He freezes time using a camera to keep the colors still. He is quite loyal to photography when he draws and devoted to painting when he chooses his palette. He sometimes observes this flowing elusive time without the aid of a camera and sets free the constricted time in a photograph by painting it. The colors are gray and purple in the afternoon and green-grey during the day, or as photographers would say they are Magenta or Cyan. He naturally chooses places or things that are common visual imagery in photography. It is enough for him to have a bed, a dresser, a fluorescent light, a photo frame, a tray, some water drips or sunray to want to make them visible. Time has stood still in these spaces, objects have become wilted and it suffice if they are left unattended somewhere in a corner. He looks at things straightly, neither from up nor down. Just a neutral stare. He puts the camera aside and simply lives with these objects.  He undrestands the existence of a tray or a book and sees the passing of time upon them. Every hour of a day, while adding paint to his canvas, he tastes the light shined on an object. The coldness of the tray in a gloomy winter evening, or the feel of a warm breakfast tea can be felt in his paintings.
In his painting of a tray, something this mundane, rigid and seemingly so unremarkable, the artist manages to give us an exceptional opportunity for contemplation and experience. Perhaps, if I may want to compare this work with his previous ones, I will have to mention the mirrors facing us hung on the wall. Although the painter himself is not there to be visible in the mirrors, it is the subject itself that is been highlighetd and the artist seems to get close to the functionality of photography even more.  What is significant in seeing these mirrors is the absence of us and the painter and our questioning minds. But what remains with us in this painting of a tray, is the act of painting and the act of seeing.
The more time has passed of Iman Afsarian’s endeavours and the more he has painted, his works have gained more flavour of their own. It doesn’t matter whether his works resemble "good” photos or not, whether there is a specific subject behind them or whether they are repetitive. What matters, in my opinion, is that repetition, or better said, technique, has become the soul of these paintings. His works have come to life because of repetitions and have interwined with the soul of their creator.
Now that I look back at Iman’s paintings, I realize how good it is to see that they are dusty, how good that they are left lifeless somewhere, and how good that despite this all,  there is no asking for rain to be poured on them.
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More About Tehran

Overview and HistoryTehran is the capital of Iran and the largest city in the Middle East, with a population of fifteen million people living under the peaks of the Alborz mountain range.Although archaeological evidence places human activity around Tehran back into the years 6000BC, the city was not mentioned in any writings until much later, in the thirteenth century. It's a relatively new city by Iranian standards.But Tehran was a well-known village in the ninth century. It grew rapidly when its neighboring city, Rhages, was destroyed by Mongolian raiders. Many people fled to Tehran.In the seventeenth century Tehran became home to the rulers of the Safavid Dynasty. This is the period when the wall around the city was first constructed. Tehran became the capital of Iran in 1795 and amazingly fast growth followed over the next two hundred years.The recent history of Tehran saw construction of apartment complexes and wide avenues in place of the old Persian gardens, to the detriment of the city's cultural history.The city at present is laid out in two general parts. Northern Tehran is more cosmopolitan and expensive, southern Tehran is cheaper and gets the name "downtown."Getting ThereMehrabad airport is the original one which is currently in the process of being replaced by Imam Khomeini International Airport. The new one is farther away from the city but it now receives all the international traffic, so allow an extra hour to get there or back.TransportationTehran driving can be a wild free-for-all like some South American cities, so get ready for shared taxis, confusing bus routes and a brand new shiny metro system to make it all better. To be fair, there is a great highway system here.The metro has four lines, tickets cost 2000IR, and they have segregated cars. The women-only carriages are the last two at the end, FYI.Taxis come in two flavors, shared and private. Private taxis are more expensive but easier to manage for the visiting traveler. Tehran has a mean rush hour starting at seven AM and lasting until 8PM in its evening version. Solution? Motorcycle taxis! They cut through the traffic and any spare nerves you might have left.People and CultureMore than sixty percent of Tehranis were born outside of the city, making it as ethnically and linguistically diverse as the country itself. Tehran is the most secular and liberal city in Iran and as such it attracts students from all over the country.Things to do, RecommendationsTake the metro to the Tehran Bazaar at the stop "Panzda Gordad". There you can find anything and everything -- shoes, clothes, food, gold, machines and more. Just for the sight of it alone you should take a trip there.If you like being outside, go to Darband and drink tea in a traditional setting. Tehranis love a good picnic and there are plenty of parks to enjoy. Try Mellat park on a friday (fridays are public holidays), or maybe Park Daneshjou, Saaii or Jamshidieh.Remember to go upstairs and have a look around, always always always! The Azadi Tower should fit the bill; it was constructed to commemorate the 2500th anniversary of the Persian Empire.Tehran is also full of museums such as:the Contemporary Art Museumthe Abghine Musuem (glass works)the 19th century Golestan Royal Palace museumthe museum of carpets (!!!)Reza Abbasi Museum of extraordinary miniaturesand most stunning of all,the Crown Jewels Museum which holds the largest pink diamond in the world and many other jaw-dropping jewels.Text by Steve Smith.