Lives and works in Houston, TX, USA
Avisheh Mohsenin was born in France and moved to Iran as a child where she grew up. She moved to the U.S. in 1997 and obtained a Masters in Economics. She started her art career by taking classes and experimenting with various mediums. Avisheh’s work has moved from photographic compositions to sculptural mixed media pieces involving found objects, hand-fatigued magazine cutouts, light-boxes, and image making using acrylic, pencil, and collages.
She has exhibited in the U.S. at Heidi Vaughan Fine Art (solo show in Houston), FotoFest (Houston), Aldo Castillo (Chicago), Chicago Art Department, Creative Lounge Chicago, Fulton Street Collective, LIPA Gallery, Margin Gallery Art Collective, MIIT Museum in Turin, Italy and at Golestan Gallery in Iran (solo show) in 2007. Her work is included in the Houston Flood Museum.
She is the co-founder and board member of Pasfarda Arts & Cultural Exchange, a not-for-profit organization based in Chicago dedicated in promoting peace through the arts.
My practice includes mixed media imagery, installations, and photo-collages aiming to bridge the gap between the past and the present. Centered on themes of memory, loss, duality, and dislocation, I combine personal
(re-)interpretations of fragments of my memories with that of family members. The media involves ripping, layering, defusing of medium, and breaking and reconstructing of material. In the process, I welcome a dynamic of taking control and letting go of the control where the material or the composition can dictate what is next.
Born in France and raised in a secular family in a theocratic Iran, my work revokes a mapping project of the lost and found. Experiences of revolution, war, and immigration become present on the canvas: a diptych of the inside and the outside, a duet between certainty and uncertainty, and between the real and the surreal. The viewer almost has to unveil a layer, a ripped photograph, or a hand-fatigued image to get to the meaning or the truth, only to have to rip again. The appropriated elements in the imagery serve as a puzzle as well as a map to crack the puzzle.
In one of the mixed media drawings, a transcending set of dancers move on one side of the canvas emoting the whirling dervishes of the East, where on the opposite side, more formal and architectural elements evoke the logical order of the West.
In the same way that I had to go to basements to take shelter from bombs or to adapt in new environments, my work has become a stacking of meaning, purpose, and memory. By directing attention inward toward the personal, I re-emerge outward toward the collective experience.
Older works: www.avishehmohsenin.com