I Offer My Hands To The Shades

Semi Grand-Prix

mehrdad khataei
I Offer My Hands To The Shades
drypoint / etching / aquatint / mezzotint / engraving
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Review: Toshiaki MINEMURA (Art Critic)

Sunk into the middle of a dark blue field is a face with a gloomy expression, and on either side are the gloved hands of someone; we cannot know to whom they belong. Are they perhaps hands cut off from the arms? Are they perhaps the author's own hands? Standing in the dark background is a man clothed in military garb looking at the viewer. Everything appears to be inside a room, which is twisted and toppling. This description portrays the work as an indictment of an overwhelming situation, and perhaps this is the motivation of the artist; however, the impression the work leaves goes far deeper. For me, it is a figurative representation of the situation for all people, globally, rendered with all of the skill of a copper plate artist into something bold and masterful, and deserving of a grand prix. This work must not be seen as depicting “Iran” only. The ambiguity of formal elements and spatial representations throughout the work creates a universalized unease expressing both the unease of the artist, as well as the viewer, who looks upon this dangerous environment and cannot help but feel drawn into it. Even those who might not like overt suggestions of political or social topics could not help but feel a deep resonance with the skillful artistry on display that avoids any explicit manifestation of line or meaning.