Wk 13 – Artist Conversation -Shahrzad Ahrar

IMG_1140Shahrzad Ahrar’s art gallery was unlike any other I have viewed so far. Shahrzad’s gallery reminded me of a museum type experience. It had multiple different displays of art that consisted of interactive kaleidoscopes, printed pictures hung down from the ceiling, and a wall in which you could press certain pieces of it and it would play a voice recording back to you.

IMG_1141Shahrzad’s gallery was especially interesting because every piece had a different story behind it. She stated that her gallery was actually based around four individuals that she interviewed specifically for her gallery. She interviewed individuals who had immigrated to the United States from a different country and asked them questions about how they felt when they came here and why they decided to move here. The interview consisted of thirty questions and with these answers, she used them to make her designs. Many of the subjects had similar responses. All of the subjects stated that they moved to the United States to escape from war in their homeland.

IMG_1142The wall that had the graphic design covering the entire side had four patches that contained voice recordings from each subject. Each patch had specific designs that represented how the subjects answered to the questions. Shahrzad discussed one patch and stated that that particular design consisted of pictures of soldiers, the subject’s family trying to escape their homeland in the middle of the night, different war symbols, maps of the countries, and rockets and fires.

Shahrzad’s art gallery has been the only gallery throughout the entire semester that actually appealed to my emotions. All the other galleries sort of just felt like a for fun viewing type thing, Shahrzad’s gallery really made me feel emotions towards the subjects that she interviewed, for any other person in the world who has had to immigrate to another country, and for her art work. I like that it felt like Shahrzad used her art to spread awareness about a certain topic.

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