Abbas Akhavan Variations On A Garden

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Mercer Union, a centre for contemporary art says
Abbas Akhavan
Variations on a garden

15 September – 31 October 2015
Opening: Saturday 12 September 2015, from 5pm with an afterparty at Holy Oak


Mercer Union is delighted to present a solo exhibition by Abbas Akhavan entitled variations on a garden.

Abbas Akhavan’s practice ranges from site-specific ephemeral installations to drawing, video, sculpture and performance. The direction of his research has been deeply influenced by the specificity of the sites where he works: the architectures that house them, the economies that surround them, and the people that frequent them. The domestic sphere, as a forked space between hospitality and hostility, has been an ongoing area of research in his practice. Recent works have shifted focus, wandering onto spaces and species just outside the home – the garden, the backyard, and other domesticated landscapes. Variations on a garden gathers the sculptural installation Study for a Monument (2013-present) and video installation Ghost (2013). This is Akhavan’s first solo exhibition in Toronto.

Akhavan is the recipient of Kunstpreis Berlin (2012), Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts’ Artists Prize-Finalist (2012), Abraaj Group Art Prize (2014) and is currently shortlisted for the Sobey Award (2015).


PUBLIC PROGRAM (All talks are free and all are welcome)

DISCUSSION: Iraq: Violence, protest and prospects
Saturday 19 September 2015, 3PM
Join us for a lecture/discussion with Sabah Alnasseri, Professor for Political Science (Middle East Politics) at York University, Toronto.

ARTIST TALK
Thursday 8 October 2015, 7PM
Artist Abbas Akhavan in conversation with Francisco-Fernando Granados and Georgina Jackson.

IN SADDAM’S SHADOW: screening and discussion with Waleed Nesyif
Tuesday 20 October 2015, 7PM
Join us for this screening and discussion with Iraqi filmmaker and writer Waleed Nesyif. Nesyif has been involved in award winning documentaries including Shocking and Awe, a Deep Dish TV series, I know I’m not alone (2006), and Heavy Metal in Baghdad (2007) as well as his own short films Yearning (2011) and In Saddam’s Shadow (2013). He is currently working on a feature length documentary titled Where Once Stood Gods and Men.

This exhibition is presented with leading support from Partners In Art
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By: Mercer Union, a centre for contemporary art