Opening Reception Thursday, February 7, 6-9pm
111 Front Street [1st floor, suite 212-14] | Brooklyn, NY
Large-scale paintings from the My Faantazee series
presented at Causey Contemporary DUMBO location
February 7 - March 3, 2013
Causey Contemporary will feature a selection of Behbahani's large-scale mixed media paintings from her My Faantazee series at their DUMBO location, marking the artist's first solo exhibition with the gallery. Her recent body of paintings, created in her studio five years after relocating to Brooklyn from Iran, were completed with an anticipated freedom from the feeling that “you had to live—did live, from habit that became instinct—in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized” (George Orwell, 1984). However, in My Faantazee, Behbahani found that the "essence of being watched is universally infused."
The works capture their subjects mid-action, as if by camera. Moments are frozen. Their endeavors come with the promise of sweet ‘treats’—in the name of a liberation operation or simply a 'free rectal exam'. Witty characters are ensnared in this pop-grotesque world: horny babies, seductive kids, totemic fetish toys, donkeys and American-made superheroes. Surprised that her physical displacement from the East to the West brought her a vivid political and social déjà vu, the protagonists in Behbahani’s new series—from babies to iconic superheroes—each entertain a fear of being watched. They anxiously search for hidden cameras and eyes. This constant fear imbues a childhood hyper-maturity as well as an adult infancy, as beings in all stages of life are subjugated to this invasiveness.
Behbahani states that "As author, subject and observer of these chaotic and absurd parodies, I represent a deep cultural frustration and resentment. I am the storyteller of my fantasies, flirting with taboo and the uncomfortable gaze."
About the Artist
Born in Tehran, Iran, Bahar Behbahani is a multidisciplinary artist who lives in New York. She received her B.A. and M.A. in Painting in Tehran. Her painting, installation, photography and video art have been featured in the Sydney Biennial, Sydney; Sharjah Biennial, United Arab Emirates; Christie's, London; United Nations, Geneva; Asian Art Biennial, Bangladesh, Miramar Museum, Zagreb; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington D.C.; Queens Museum, New York; and Tribeca Film Festival, New York, MACRO, Museum of Contemporary Art, Rome, Italy.
In 2007, for the 13th Annual International Exhibition of Women's Art, New York City, the artist's video Suspended was selected 'Best in Show' by Carrie Springer, Senior Curatorial Assistant, Whitney Museum of American Art. Guggenheim Museum Curator Suzanne Cotter selected the video Ride the Caspian—Behbahani's recent collaboration with Kazakhstani artist Almagul Menlibayeva—for the 2011 Sharjah Biennial, United Arab Emirates. The video was again selected for the 18th Sydney Biennial.
Hidden Camera will open with an artist's reception on February 7 as part of First Thursday in DUMBO and will run through Sunday, March 3, 2013.
CAUSEY CONTEMPORARY Tracy Causey-Jeffery
T: 718 218 8939 E: email@example.com
AKArt Amy Kisch
T: 646 580 6626 E: info@AKArt.com
Image: © Bahar Behbahani, Tea House, 2012-2013, Mixed media on Canvas, 54 x 72 inches