The paintings of Rokni Haerizadeh read like novels. Reflections on society are moulded around scenes that have a literary depth and complexity. Like a writer, Rokni enters the minds of his characters - his style shifting between paintings to reflect the atmosphere of the situation he is portraying. As this collection of works shows, the artist is an instinctual storyteller who fashions living characters within his works.


Several new paintings included here continue Rokni's work in diptych. Huge, multi-panel paintings in this style narrate the unease of Iranian society as it modernises and gropes for an identity. Semblances of the 18th and 19th century societal paintings are subverted. The grotesque slips into these scenes, and we're witness to a dark, violent reality that has contorted to his vision.


In 'Seezdah Begar', we see families picnicking beside a highway in Tehran. Relating to the 13th day of Eid, when it is Iranian tradition to eat outside (for fear of bad luck otherwise), the right-hand panel presents a vision of social segregation. Men rest on the grass - smoking, playing cards - while women serve food and accommodate the men in a flurry of industry.

Installation Views