Image Credit: The Kurator

Where artistry and introspection meet, Sepideh Isley, a contemporary Iranian and Swedish artist living in Australia is transcending cultural boundaries, embarking on a significant milestone with her first solo exhibition in the Middle East. Collaborating with ArtKōrero, the exhibition titled 'It comes in waves' has hit Dubai at the Foundry Downtown, offering a meditative exploration of organic shapes and fluidity, reflecting the artist's personal and professional journey.

Sepideh shares, "Since I started my journey as an artist, it has always been very important to me to one day be able to have a presence in the Middle East and showcase my work, a homecoming of sorts." The collaboration with ArtKōrero, with its strong understanding of her work and a crucial position in the Middle Eastern market, felt like a natural step. The title 'It comes in waves' encapsulates the organic nature of her shapes, arriving unbidden, in waves, much like the tides—a reflection of artistic freedom and inspiration.

Image Credit: The Kurator

Looking into the exhibition's core themes, Sepideh shares, "This exhibition delves into the realm of painting as a profound meditative practice. Each stroke and contour becomes a therapeutic exploration, a fluid language of abstraction that grapples with the complexities of the world, translating encounters into tangible expressions.”

Discussing her choice of mediums, Sepideh explains her process: "I work mainly with abstractions, digitally drawn and painted by hand on linen, on the floor." The initial stage mirrors an expressionist approach, with broad, emotive strokes flowing unconsciously. The subsequent phase is more controlled, requiring layering for proportions and edges. This laborious yet cathartic process contributes to the evolution of her work. “I love working with elegance and subtleties and not being weighed down by representation. My paintings aren’t made to be read, but are there to be responded to.”

I love working with elegance and subtleties and not being weighed down by representation. My paintings aren’t made to be read but are there to be responded to.

- Sepideh Isley

Sepideh draws inspiration from diverse sources such as conceptual art, installations, and modern dance. She emphasizes the spontaneity of her work, speaking her truth with no preconceived ideas. Her nonrepresentational and non-political pieces are, however, influenced by the world around her, acting as an extension of her experiences. “In recent years my interest and love for monumental sculptural works have also been in focus. Especially with the help of modern technology like Ai, I have been able to visualise these ideas into tangible expressions to be able to pitch for projects and bring these ideas to life.”

Image Credit: The Kurator

Reflecting on the reception of her work in various regions, Sepideh believes that art has a unifying power, resonating with those who appreciate the beauty and depth of subtle works. Internationally, her paintings are received as meditative, transcending cultural and political contexts.

Discussing the UAE as a cultural canvas, Sepideh envisions a positive response from the vibrant and multicultural audience. Despite initial appearances, the region appreciates the meditative and subtle, making her exhibition particularly intriguing for fans of minimalism. The artist expresses her gratitude for the overwhelming response received during the opening week, especially because of her regional roots.

Image Credit: The Kurator

Sepideh Isley’s exhibition at the Foundry Downtown promises a reflective journey, inviting viewers to embrace the waves of creativity and experience the therapeutic essence of her art. Beyond the Foundry, the exhibition extends its embrace to Baituti Home in Jumeirah 3 until the end of March 2024. Sepideh's work, deeply rooted in personal and universal narratives, establishes a cross-cultural dialogue that goes above and beyond boundaries and invites contemplation. For art enthusiasts seeking a meditative experience, 'It comes in waves' is an unmissable showcase of Sepideh's artistic prowess.