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BANAFSHEH HEMMATI

About Banafsheh Hemmati

Banafsheh Hemmati holds a Master of Arts degree in Industrial Design from the Faculty of Arts and Architecture, Azad University, Tehran. During her graduate and post-graduate studies, she worked in several fields, including teaching, interior design, visual arts, and product design. She spent four years (2000-2004) as an instructor for graduate industrial design courses in the Faculty of Arts and Architecture.

Although she still spends part of her time on interior design projects, most of her time has been dedicated to jewelry design since 2008. From 1998 to 2003, her works were featured in six private viewings and shows. In 2013, the late Houshang Seyhoun, interested in Banafsheh’s works that were inspired by traditional Persian architecture, invited her for a solo exhibition in his gallery, Seyhoun Art Gallery LA. This exhibition’s success caused her to mount another show (“Distance”) that year in Vali Gallery in Tehran, followed by another show (“Fluctuations”) in 2014. Banafsheh works in her private studio in Tehran.

When asked about her work she replied: “I like to use Islamic motifs and elements of traditional Persian architecture elements in my pieces – not just as decorative elements – the doors and windows [seen in Persian traditional architecture] are like entrances, taking all the distances away; perhaps the distance between yesterday and today, or the distances between appearances and essences; or even the distances between separated people. After bringing human figures into my abstract works, I started thinking about creating bigger works, like sculptures. I think that will perhaps help me to create a closer bound between jewelry design, which has decorative and practical uses, and sculpture, which is basically thought of as a work of art. I like to put more emphasis on the artistic aspects of my works; an aspect emerging from my ideas and not from the market taste. For me, art begins at the level of ideas.”

When asked about Banafsheh’s work, Dr. Behnam Kamrani, artist and instructor at the University of Arts, Tehran, who collaborated with her on “Always” project, replied: “Banafsheh Hemmati’s jewelry express visual elements of the past using new interpretations of form and build. Elements taken from motifs and patterns seen in the golden age of Islamic art and architecture go along a contemporary view into jewelry, metallic forms and precious stones. In her more recent works, elements from figurative art come along traditional motifs and bring about a dialectic. She has analyzed readings based on the potentials of succession, pattern, scale and fixation, seen in historical works, and consciously uses design to refresh or reshape them. Her final visual product is an object having the elegance of the classics and the fluidity of the contemporary world. These jewels recreate the complex shapes of architectural elements and motifs and thus give insight into a world in which order and disorder have come to an equilibrium.”

“Jewelry as not merely as decorative objects”