Ashkan Honarvar

The United Kingdom, London Michael Hoppen Contemporary

Ashkan Honarvar was born in 1980 in Shiraz, Iran. At the age of 4 (during the Iran-Iraq war) he left Iran with his parents to live in The Netherlands where he grew up. In 2007 he graduated with a BFA in Visual Arts & Communication from The  School of Visual Arts, Utrecht, The Netherlands. In 2007 and 2009 he received the prestigious Dutch art fund (Fund BKVB) which helped him to evolve as an artist and develop his personal style. After this he increasingly  specialised in collage. 

"The saying goes that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. It occurs in places you least expect. Revealing its art in the human body, but also cruelly absent in the presence of deformations and scars. Ashkan Honarvar depicts an undeniable, unavoidable beauty by accepting the darker sides of human ‘nature’. The body, torn by acts of war, exploited by the sex industry or used as a tool for seeking identity, is the focal point of his work.This constitutes a search for a universal representation of the evil latent in every human, providing an opportunity for reflection. His aesthetic dissection has an intriguing macabre nature, which opens the images to interpretation. Honarvar’s almost empiric exploration of the human condition knows no bounds. Its goal: the indefinable core." ~ Titus Verheijen

This group of pictures presented at Unseen 2013 is a special commission for the fair titled "Creed, The Apple". The artist feels the works reference the amazing and wondrous stories in the Old Testament, which through the ages they have been modified, interpreted in various ways, abused and worshipped. he states, "They created fear, but also provided comfort. The power of the written word is immense yet every reader interprets the text in their own way. Paintings such as the ‘Garden of Earthly Delights’ by Hieronymus Bosch illustrated the stories for the illiterate and were used to inculcate fear and instill submission to the will of the church." In these collages, many stories, many references come together to draw the audience in to a complex and unusual visual narrative.