'Looking for Simurgh' is a new solo exhibition by the artist Mehdi-Georges Lahlou. The show presents a new body of work composed of bronze, ceramic, and charcoal sculptures as well as manipulated archival pictures and enamel prints. In this exhibition, Mehdi-Georges Lahlou contrasts realism with abstraction and thus continues his exploration of violence and desire by triangulating personal experiences, ancestral history, and self-representation. Fixed and analogous, his objects complicate history and offer a pause in moments of momentum and motion. The works exhibited are all in various hues of black, a new direction for the artist whose sculptures usually feature an array of vibrant colors.
'Looking for Simurgh' borrows its title from 'The Conference of the Birds' (1177), a poem by the Persian Sufi poet Farid ud-Din Attar commonly known as Attar of Nishapur. In the poem, the birds of the world go on a search for Simurgh, a benevolent bird in Persian mythology and literature, to be their leader as they have none. The poem represents a notion of self-acceptance and interconnectedness. It highlights the inevitably of the journey to get to those notions of connection. As it is with the artist’s overall practice, Mehdi-Georges Lahlou’s new body of work is as spatially aware as it is concerned with the body and its representations in media, history, and collective imaginary. His work calls for a more careful look at historical representations while demanding opacity at the same time.
Artists: Mehdi-Georges Lahlou