Dastan is pleased to announce Mohammad Piryaee’s solo exhibition titled “Stairway to Odessa” at Dastan+2. The exhibition will open on Friday, December 27, 2019, and will be open for public viewing through January 17, 2020. This is the first exhibition of works by Mohammad Piryaee at Dastan. His work has been previously featured in five solo exhibitions, notably three at Tehran’s Homa Gallery, and several group shows in Tehran, Ahwaz, Kashan, Dubai, Munich, and Geneva.
Mohammad Piryaee (b. 1984, Qom, Iran) studied his Bachelor’s in Handicrafts at Kashan University and Master’s in Painting at Azad University, Tehran Central Branch.
The current show includes a series of drawings and three-dimensional ceramic and wood pieces that have been put together in an installation designed by the artist. The exhibition title, “Stairway to Odessa”, refers to the renown Potemkin Stairs in Odessa, Ukraine. Built between 1837 and 1841, these steps act like an entrance to the city from the sea. While the stairs extend for 142 meters, they give an illusion of greater length. Also, their design creates an optical illusion: looking downwards from the highest step, one only sees the landings, while when looking up from the bottom, only the steps are visible.
Taking inspiration from the Potemkin Stairs, Mohammad Piryaee has created a staircase inside the gallery space that accommodates some of his most recent three-dimensional pieces. The pieces, created in his signature ‘burnt’ ceramic and wood, play with the viewer’s sense of perspective and depth. Mohammad Piryaee’s other sculptures are scattered around the exhibition space like the remains of an ancient architectural landscape.
On the show’s elaborate setting, the artist writes: “I believe that portraying any situation, without depicting any human personages or a specific locality, is quite sufficiently rich in details —especially when it comes to portraying the current situation.” Mohammad Piryaee continues: “Facing their visual sensitivities, artists embark on making art. As so, any artist is influenced by their sensory inputs and experiences from where they were born and grew up in. In similar fashion, my mind has been affected by the paradoxes it sees in the outside world.” The artist states that “a depiction of irony” has been the most important goal in the recent series of works and that he was never inspired by “an architectural view” and has never aimed to “create a structure”. Nevertheless, he sees “the architecture of still life as an instance of the human body”, and so it was in such shapes that he has sought inspiration to portray situational ironies.