Lives and works in Houston, TX, USA
Avisheh Mohsenin is an Iranian-American artist based in Houston. Her practice involves mixed media photo-based collages and installations centered on themes of memory, loss, transience, and transformation.
Born in France and raised in Iran, she moved to the U.S. to obtain a masters in Economics. Her art practice was formed by taking classes at various Chicago institutions. Drawing on her layered background, Avisheh constructs multi linear works on paper using repurposed images often paralleled with painting and with a poetic narrative. After her studio was damaged during Hurricane Harvey, she re-appropriated the distorted material into new visuals reclaiming artistic agency and generating high acclaim for the positive message they relayed.
She is represented by Heidi Vaughan Fine Art in Houston and has exhibited at FotoFest (Houston); WhiteWall Space Gallery (NYC); MIIT Museum (Turin, Italy); Aldo Castillo (Chicago); Chicago Art Department; Margin Gallery Art Collective; and at Golestan Gallery (Tehran, Iran), among other. Her series Resurface inspired by her art studio damage by Harvey floods is cataloged in the Houston Flood Museum.
Drawing from my experience of growing up under a theocratic regime, the foundation of my practice is to transform images in order to inspire new ways of experiencing what is. I construct compositions from re-appropriated photographs invoking a mapping project of the lost narrative into a new experience. By using the power of image making and new and old technology I create multilayered visuals that ignite critical thinking.
By an almost meditative repetition of ripping, layering, defusing of medium, and breaking and reconstructing of material, I reduce and distill the initial concept before re-stacking a new one into layered (re)interpretations. During the process I welcome the opportunity of ceding power and control to forces of the media and the changing composition and view the work often with a painter’s eye.
My visual inquiry is influenced by the Buddhist practices of wabi sabi (finding beauty in decay) as well as themes of ephemerality of the human experience dominant in Persian poetry.
In the same way that I had to go to basements to shelter from bombs during the Iraq-Iran war or to adapt to new environments as an immigrant, my work has become a stacking of meaning, purpose, and documentation.