Reza NADJI

Born  in  Tehran,  Iran,  artist  Reza  Nadji  grew  up  in  Düsseldorf,  Germany.  Currently  based  in Berlin  and  Los  Angeles,  Nadji  graduated  with  honours  from  the  University  for  Applied Sciences  and  Arts  in  Dortmund,  and  received  a  scholarship  award  from  Parsons  School  of Design   in   New  York.   Most   notably,   he   won   the Gute  Aussichten   photography   award, Germany’s highest honour for graduating students in the field of fine art photography.

His  work  has  been  exhibited  internationally  in  galleries  and  museums  such  as  the  MAKK Museum  for  Applied  Art  in  Cologne,  and  the  Deichtorhallen  Museum  for  Photography  in Hamburg.  In  conjunction  with  his  work  as  an  artist,  Nadji  founded  and  operated  the  IFB (Institut  für  Fotografische  Bildung)  photography  school  in  Berlin,  and  has  been  a  visiting lecturer at the Utah State University and the University of Nuevo Leon in Mexico.

In  this  current  body  of  work,  Nadji  explores  the  connections  between  visual  perception  and emotion  in  regard  to  the  ebb  and  flow  of  the  human  states  of  chaos  and  order  -  their relativity, their balance, and their intersection.

In the work, Ultimatum, Nadji combines 3 analogies that correlate in the struggle of being.  The  first  reference  is  to  the  state between   the   heavens   and   the   earth, relating  to  genesis,  from  a  psychological (as opposed to religious) standpoint.

The   second   idea   stems   from   human nature’s  continuous  process  of  creating balance  between  chaos  and  order,  and nature and culture.

The  third,  which  references  theories  in sociology, mathematics and physics, hints towards  the  concept  of  relativity,  where the prerequisite for anything to “be” is the existence of its opposite, and that a state of perfect balance must accordingly exist on an overarching level.

Since  its  inception,  photography has been described as being able to   visually   freeze   a   passage   of time  at  a  given  moment.  Even  the shortest   exposure   is   always   a period of time, though is generally interpreted  as  punctual.  Time  is perceived as linear, a collection of moments captured in the order of occurrence. They create a sense of past  and  future,  yet  they  are  really only a product of our assumptions.

In Multiples,  the  levels  are  created  in  a  certain  time  sequence,  but  can  not  be reassigned  in  a  specific  order  once  the  work  is  completed.  These  photographs attempt  to  disrupt  the  idea  of  time  based  only  on  images  of  memory  in  linear sequence. In this series, the well-known reality (usually shown photographically with a single exposure) is divided and multi-layered. Since none of the individual exposures is more clear than the other, there is no layer that can be understood as a norm, or as a starting point that would garner more importance than another.

The  images  of  the  landscapes  are  to  be  dissolved  in  form  and  colour,  as  we  may recognize  from  non-objective  painting  and  the  beginnings  of  expressionism  and futurism. Nevertheless, they should not lose the content that connects them with our natural perception and the known environment. Lines and geometrical arrangements, as  well  as  the  pure  image  composition  is  emphasized,  but  the  importance  of  the details  is  meant  to  disappear,  so  that  our  natural  perception  of  what should  be  is disrupted.

In this third series, Oceanscapes, Nadji creates geometric , abstract   landscapes   as   the horizon   intersects   to   form   4triangles.   Referencing   similar themes  of  balance  and  contrast, the   two   exposures   overlap   to form  a  graphic  simplicity  that  is clean  and  calming,  emphasizing a   natural   order.   Although   this cleanness may give a contemporary  feel,  the  images were  not  superimposed  through digital manipulation or Photoshop, but though the classic method of double exposure. 

© 2019 by Emily Harding Gallery

326 Carlaw Ave., Toronto, Canada, M4M 3N8

Tel: 647-528-4928