The Iranian Studies Initiative at UCSB and Farhang Foundation invite you to the live talk with Æli Reza Sahaf Zadeh discussing the renowned architect and sculpture SIAH ARMAJANI: A PRAGMATIC DECONSTRUCTIVIST.
This event is a part of a lecture series on Iranian Modern and Contemporary Art, which will be held during the academic year 2020-2021
Siah Armajani’s architectural sculptures between the late 1960s and early 1990s interrogated the viewers’ understanding of space and the human relations regulated by built environments. While in his statements, Armajani would always emphasize the significance of “citizen-artist,” the critical discourse on his art has not yet fully historicized or theorized the social underpinnings of form in the artist’s constructions. In this lecture, I will be arguing that Armajani’s work can be most accurately seen through the lens of “deconstruction as prophetic of ‘the democracy that is to come.’” Taking clues from Armajani’s persistent emphasis on Jeffersonian democracy and American anarchism as two major interconnected sources of influence on his work, I will show how the artist used vernacular aesthetics and radical decentralization of shared spaces to underline the rudiments of a functioning democracy.