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خبر و رسانه

55    Reza Mafi (1943-1982)

List Of Lots

More Info

Art Title : Untitle

Signature: “Mafi 1351” in Farsi and “MAFI” in English (lower left)
mixed media on fiberboard
56×41 cm
Executed in 1972


600 - 800 Million IRR

Price realized

900,000,000 IRR

About Art Work

Insertion of letters and words within geometric structures such as rectangles, circles and rhombi is a practice that has roots in calligraphic inscription, where a calligrapher dispenses with the conventional succession of letters in a line and yields to an order or composition that geometric structures dictate. Oval is the most suitable form for Nasta’liq inscription as it can accommodate to geometric features of this style of writing. Reza Mafi is creating an implicit connection between enclosing letters to the confines of the frame and subject of a poem; raven is free in the garden and nightingale confined to the cage. A “restraint” (BAND in Persian) is evoked through closely-knit letters encapsulated in a closed, circular space, and a nightingale is entrapped in a cage. The glitter of red letters ensnared in a dark brown background must be added to the provisions that the artist employed to get his message across. In the meantime, we must not overlook the formal application of the bird and Nasta’liq calligraphy. It is said that inspired by the flight of birds in a dream, Mir Ali Tabrizi, great master of Persian calligraphy, innovated this method. Any doubt as to the truth of this assertion does not refute the connection between compositions of Nasta’liq style and overall figure of the bird. In fact, Mafi is not using calligraphy-painting in depicting the leitmotif of the encaged bird – with a long tradition in Islamic calligraphy;  rather, he is doing so by striking a balance between calligraphic style and framing of the work. Due to the projection of letters, this work is calling to mind the inscriptions used in the Islamic architecture. A fundamental difference is that the material used here is Expanded Polystyrene, a light delicate material that becomes resistant by application of oil-based paint and stabilizing substances.