Yousha Bashir & Rana Dehghan: Liste Art Fair Basel 2023

12 - 18 June 2023 Art Fairs
This June, Dastan will be participating in Liste Art Fair with the electric landscapes of Yousha Bashir (b. 1989, Manila, Philippines) and the spirited sculptures of Rana Dehghan (b. 1986, Tehran, Iran) at Liste 2023. Both artists see the notion of "self" in relation to the environment as worthy of exploration in their work.

Date: 12 - 18 June 2023
Location: Basel, Switzerland
Installation Views
Press release

At Liste Art Fair Basel 2023, Dastan presents a duo exhibition of works by Rana Dehghan (b. 1986, Tehran) and Yousha Bashir (b. 1989, Manila). The fair will be open to public view from June 12, 2023, through June 18. This is Dastan’s fourth presentation at Liste. The electric landscapes of Bashir and the glazing fiberglass sculptures of Dehghan explore the notion of the ‘self’ about one’s surroundings. In doing so, they reevaluate such concepts as materiality, dichotomies such as the digital/virtual versus the real, self vs. shadow, awareness vs. spontaneity, and spirit vs. body. 

The traditional portrayal of ghosts as a floating draped white sheet with cartoonish circles for eyes in Rana Dehghan's fiberglasses refers to her artistic process. Ironically when the ghost's intangible and virtual entity is covered, it gets revealed. With a career spanning several media and approaches, from painting to sculpture, video, animation, and installation, Rana often playfully mixes materials and concepts into fantasies, fleeting sensations, or fierce encounters. 

Through the use of objects, Dehghan makes the intangible tangible, much like the imagery of a ghost, with a clever play of irony and concealment. Rana Dehghan’s sculptures reflect a ‘self’ finding itself in an irreconcilable state. She summons what appear to be ghosts or spirits. At times the artist wants to get away from them and, at other times, use them to build a sanctuary for others. As such, they can be thought of as giving objective reality to different manifestations of the soul. 

Contrary to Dehghan, who tries to mold human emotions into objects, the artistic process for Yousha Bashir is meticulously systematized, engineered, and leveled. His images are more or less musically composed as he pieces together elements within a system. He begins by sketching out digital images, completes multiple fragmented peaks, and ends up with a futuristic landscape. Forms thread the line between virtual and physical means of being. Geometric shapes in his acrylic on canvas paintings indicate a distinct, objective presence, but what surrounds them —pixelated or curved lines— bring fluidity to the surface. The play of abstraction and depiction in the works of Bashir hints at the self’s precarious relationship with inner and outer landscapes. 

Yousha Bashir’s work has been extensively exhibited in recent years, including six solo shows and more than thirty group exhibitions. Bashir’s work has been frequently part of Dastan’s presentations at art fairs, including at Frieze Los Angeles 2022 and the 2020 and 2021 editions of Art Dubai. 

Rana Dehghan’s work has been featured in four solo exhibitions in Tehran, and more than ten group exhibitions, including at the Asia Art Week in Dubai (2019).