AmirAli Ghasemi's parkingallery quick notes

Reports & thoughts from Tehran based art space: parkingallery by its Art Director Amirali Ghasemi ...

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Iran & CO, by Amirali Ghasemi at Delfina Foundation

Iran & CO, by Amirali Ghasemi at Delfina Foundation

The Knowledge - Stop 2: Tehran: Artist Talk with Amirali Ghasemi

Artist Amirali Ghasemi discusses Iran & CO, his ongoing curatorial project. Iran & CO includes an exhibition, a documentary and an archive project. The exhibition gathers a number of site and context specific commissions conceived by the newest generation of Iranian artists, who have all been invited to produce works outside of the gallery space.

The 'documentary/film/installation' Iran Beyond Borders (1960-2010) maps out the history of modern and contemporary art in Iran, from the late 50s to today. It aims to archive and review more than 100 Iranian art exhibitions in the last 10 years, and features interviews with key figures of the contemporary Iranian art scene (such as Khosrow Hassansadeh, Ghazel, Alireza Samiazar, Fereydoun Ave, Hamid Keshmirshekan, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Barbad Golshiri and Rose Issa) on subjects including the impact of the market on artistic practices, the local in relation to the global, the politics of representation and identity. The film will be premiered in Bruges, Belgium, in October 2010.

Amirali Ghasemi was born in Tehran in 1980. He graduated in 2004 with a BA in graphic design from Central Tehran Azad University. In 1998, Ghasemi established Parkingallery, an independent project space in Tehran, and in 2002,, a virtual gallery, which has become an online platform for many young Iranian artists. He has shown his photography/videos/design works in Sweden, the Netherlands, France, Austria, Belgium, Italy, Germany, Canada, USA, Australia, Turkey, Indonesia, South Korea, China, Taiwan and Japan. In addition, he has directed audiovisual projects with Iranian rock bands. รข€¨As a curator, he has directed many exhibition projects for Parkingallery project space and other institutions. These have included Among Them: Deep Depression (2004), Transition (2005), Deeper Depression (2006), Lost in No Space (2006) and Limited Access (2007).

Iran & CO is a production of the Cultural Centre of Bruges, with the support of the Vlaamse Gemeenschap, and Parkingallery projects Tehran.

This talk is part of a series of events which focuses on emerging artistic networks and strategies in the youthful Iranian capital.

The Knowledge - Stop 2: Tehran. A series of events between 5 and 19 October 2010, at The Delfina Foundation. A journey through visual culture, one city at a time. After Damascus, our second stop will be Tehran. With contributions from Mahmoud Bakhshi, Amirali Ghasemi, Malu Halasa, Vali Mahlouji, James Neil and Solmaz Shahbazi.

All events at The Delfina Foundation, rsvp required. Please email

For more information, please see website.

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Born From The Ashes

Parkingallery is changing from an E- gallery/ nice looking static website to a multifunctional blog / news portal on Iranian and international contemporary arts and design… this decision has been made through around a year of less frequent activities on our website focusing on other projects including the our monumental mega exhibition in a suitcase: URBAN JEALOUSY/The roaming biennial of Tehran . There are other reasons to shift our activities from plain showcasing up and coming artists to a more advanced way of paying our due to the community of Iranian involved with arts, to name a few:
1st of all because of  the fact that the way we Iranians are dealing with Internet phenomenon and its fabulous growth in Iran despite obstacles raining from everywhere (!), we are encouraging our artists friends to setup their own personal websites and try our best to help them both as design studio and a project space to promote and maintain their website while benefit from being linked and featured in our refreshed website.
Secondly despite we’ve never have been acting as a commercial gallery, an increasing numbers of the artists used to work with us did or about to sign restricting contracts with individual, institutions and galleries,which made us think to refresh what we has been showing on our website for over a decade, to be experimental  and less conventional and more and more away from sophisticated mainstream trends, and more importantly focused on new media art projects and knowledge production it the field of interdisciplinary practices.
we believe that current circumstances forces by various players in the scene  made circulation of the art and its makers and contributors in Iran going through severe unfair issues, caused many talented young artist to be ignored to to fall into early professionalism which kills their interest and reduce their intention for experimental projects and practices, having said that what is really a nessesity of our time is building up an news portal/idea exchange pool which aims to track what’s happening now in the art scene by documenting see-worthy happening and events and what has been through by interviewing the key figures in the field, helping us to discover the lines between the lines of unwritten history of our own! ( wow what a big claim!)
Finally to find practical way to make parkingallery’s archive on contemporary arts, which has been evolving through the years, available online and to public.
To make all this happen, we are looking for contributors from around the world who are interested in the arts and its universe  to join our team and/or help us as freelance reporters and photographers, we will write more about this call, very soon.
That’s all for now…
Warm wishes from Parkingallery’s Headquarter
Parkingallery Team

Monday, March 24, 2008

Urban Jealousy

Urban Jealousy
the 1st International Roaming Biennial of Tehran
30th May - 6th July 2008
Curated by Serhat koksal and Amirali Ghasemi

Download the Application in WORD documents here (Choose Your Langugae)
Farsi, French, English and Turkish

Dead line: Monday 21st of April 2008

The theme of this biennial is URBAN JEALOUSY. A Jalousie * (“jealousy” in French) is a window that one can see through but not be seen; barriers that allow us to observe the world without being invited to the table. Iranian artists are given an understanding of what goes on in the world without being offered a single opportunity to communicate their thoughts—outside of our very own jalousie window: a rigid ethnic frame within an extremely politicized context.

Of all the huge urban areas around the world, Tehran stands out as a different kind of Megalopolis. It boasts one of the most dynamic art scenes in the Middle East even as the city itself deals with a rudimentary public transport system, an exploding population crisis, and an ever-increasing sprawl of mass housing; An unsightly city of experimental architecture that swallows entire villages and towns without offering them any sort of public services.

Despite its complicated urban situation—which according to experts has already spiraled out of control—artists’ societies in Tehran continue to hold numerous biennials in semi-tribal fashion. A great number of these events are government-sponsored projects whose outlook and also their premises can shift 180 degrees from one year to the next. Each community has its own set of ceremonies, as a result of which, any sense of solidarity among the artists is lost.

The Tehran Visual Arts Festival, The Calligraphy Biennial, The Sculpture Biennial, The Cartoon Biennial, The Painting Biennial of the Islamic World, The Graphic Design Biennial, The Children’s Books Illustration Biennial, The Painting Biennial, The Poster Biennial, The Poster Biennial of the Islamic World… the list is endless.

Although the legendary "TEHRAN BIENNIAL" goes back 50 years, not a single one of the above-mentioned events can be considered a biennial by prevailing and accepted international standards". An arts society recently published a call to boycott the upcoming Painting Biennial in order to demand a professionally curated exhibition, protesting the open call process and a “jury” they deemed unacceptable.

It seems impossible to have a proper Tehran biennial in Tehran, so our sprawling city and its elitist art scene remain excluded from the highly competitive art market in the region despite being surrounded from all sides by lucrative biennials and auctions. We may have great artists living and working in Iran, but we don’t have a chance to share the profits.

Tehran, as one may suppose, does not seem interested in presenting itself as a desirable destination for cultural tourism, by playing it ‘cool’ like other global cities, or scramble to be hip by coughing up the membership dues to be in the international art market.

So, to jumpstart the process, and after a long discussion with my friend, Serhat Koksal — a critic of the global biennialization process — we decided to curate a ‘mini’, on the move, Tehran biennial. To not only stop complaining about the current situation but to benefit from the advantages of it. An independent, low- budget, traveling exhibition which can be presented almost anywhere. We will travel like nomads, carrying artwork, objects, texts, and whatever, in a package no bigger than a medium-sized suitcase, preferably weighing less than 20 Kg., so it can be carried on any cheap flight.

Urban Jealousy will end its journey in May 2010,but Tehran’s Roaming Biennial will carry on.Feb 2008

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Never Been to Houston

Never Been to Houston
March 9-April 14
Lawndale Art Center, Houston, Texas
Curated by Aurora Picture Show and Jon Rubin

Imagine a city that you've only seen in reproductions or perhaps have merely heard about. A place, like many others, that exists only through rumors, stories, novels, the nightly news, magazines, movies, and the Internet. Using these secondhand clues as firsthand research material, invited worldwide contributors-who have Never Been to Houston- will photographically document (without leaving home) what they imagine Houston to look like. Contributors will upload their photos daily to an on-line Flickr site, which will be projected as a slideshow in Houston's Lawndale gallery. Anything that anyone might take a photograph of is fair game. Just as long as it feels like Houston.

For the contributors to this exhibition, the task is to search through their daily life for clues to a foreign place, for the possibility that somewhere else exists right under their nose and that, like some clunky form of astral projection, you can travel to other lands without leaving home. For viewers in Houston, it's a chance to witness an unusual mirroring of their globally projected image. In addition to the traditions of storytelling and travel guides, new information technologies are expanding the possibility of knowing a place to which you've never traveled. Three-dimensional electronic maps, 360 degree images, hosts of amateur and commercial websites and podcasts about a given city, its economy, demographics, culture and subculture have opened the way for a new vernacular of representation.

In the end, Never Been to Houston is an experimental, virtual travelogue to the city that the New York Times opines "refuses to assume a simply identity."

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Deeper Room a photo by Cedric Bamford

Behrad Javanbakht's poster for deeper depression in Cedric's residency in Malmo, this was the room which I was staying at during my studio visit/lecture at Malmo Academy of art in Oct 2006, in Sweden. it was cozy place with 24 hours running hot water, with few blocks to the academy.