Maryam Hoseini was born in 1988 in Tehran, Iran. After receiving a BA in Graphic Design at Sooreh Art University in Tehran in 2012, she moved to the US, where she simultaneously completed MFA programs at Bard College and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In her work, Hoseini layers acrylic paint and pencil drawing to create abstract, highly flattened figures and landscapes that examine the relationship between the body and physical space.
Drawing upon art-historical imagery, personal history, and tableaus of contemporary life, Hoseini’s work often depicts homosocial spaces, questioning gender, sexuality and the personal and political effects of displacement. Fragmented—often female—nude bodies overlap and float in abstract, flattened architectural spaces, in suggestive, but open-ended narratives. The artist renders details, like body hair, in pencil, on top of the acrylic paint, blending the two mediums. Her paint often extends on to the sides of her panels and even to the wall beneath the work, engaging real architectural space and asking the viewer to consider their own body and its relationship to its environment, both literally and culturally. Influenced by the artist’s own displacement from her home country, a sense of fear and anxiety, punctuated with strength and humor, pervade her work.
Director of video programming and production Nick Ravich delivers a guest dispatch of Art21’s latest on-goings.
In a new film from our “New York Close Up” series, Maryam Hoseini explores the spaces in between painting and drawing, figuration and abstraction, and the personal experiences embedded in her work and the multiple interpretations viewers can bring to it.