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Persia, NYC: The performance art of Amir Baradaran Rahmani

The topic of today: exchange.

We previously introduced the paintings of Amir Baradaran (if you missed it, read it here)

But yes. We were holding out. In addition to being an accomplished painter, Baradaran recently completed a work of performance art entitled The Other Artist is Present. Completed in four acts and performed at the Museum of Modern Art in New York (MoMa), this body of work is in response to the current performance art exhibit of Marina Abramović: The Artist is Present. Her exhibit involves a performance retrospective including approximately fifty works spanning her entire career and 25 performance artists to recreate them. Her new work in the exhibit is performed by Abramović herself: seated at a table with two chairs, donning a long, simple, navy gown, she sits quietly and engages seated viewers only with her eyes; no words.

With respect for Abramović and perhaps a desire to play with her concept, Baradaran challenges her silence during his four act performance. We love how he proposes marriage and then interprets her silence with Persian symbolism:

According to Baradaran's website:

Baradaran accepts her invitation as an impassioned fellow artist looking to engage her in a ‘sohbat’ – a Persian term for a conversation with a spiritual (and also corporeal) dimension. Meticulously responding to concepts and imagery developed by Abramović, he adds his own layers of interpretation to pay homage to a pioneer of performance art. Baradaran’s creative implementation of his own cultural background and interest in ‘hyphenated’ cultural identity inform his performance. Baradaran’s performance speaks to the notions of ‘timelessness,’(dis)continuity and consciousness central to Abramović’s work while illuminating issues such as authorship and authority.

To view the rest of his performance (and in higher quality videos), check out Baradaran's website >>

Artist one: Marina Abramović; Artist two: Amir Baradaran; Artist three: enter Farrah Sarafa. In response to Badaran's work, she composed a poem. Not proposing marriage to Baradaran, no. But beautiful nonetheless. You can read it in our Writing section >>

"The Other Artist is Present" and "The Artist is Present"
at MoMa

11 West 53rd Street
New York, NY 10019
(1) 212.708.9400
hours >>

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