Sara Niroobakhsh; born Nov 05, 1981, is an Iranian-born artist known for her performative and visual concepts that engage the globalizing feminine psyche. She was a professor at the University of Applied Science and Technology in Tehran and Jahad Daneshgahi in Karaj, Iran between 2008 and 2014. Niroobakhsh's work, Saffron Diary, was awarded an Explore and Create Research and Creation Grant as a performance installation art project from Canada Council for the Arts in 2020 and received an art residency at the Goldfarb Study Centre Gallery at York University in 2019. In this work, she writes her diary with saffron ink on thousands of grains of rice which then covers the exhibition's wall. Her recent performance-based series, Zaghareet, has been presented at the Czech China Contemporary Art Museum in Beijing, South Korea’s CICA Museum, Spartanburg Art Museum, and Frederick Horsman Varley Art Gallery in Canada and received a Visual Artists Creation Projects Grant from the Ontario Arts Council in 2018. In most of her projects, she references the notion of cultural objects through installations and performance layered with her own technology and science-based interventions. Niroobakhsh's recent work highlights the human body in transition through life and death by promoting the healing process through performance and installation art using crystals. Her performance work: Tabalvour crystallizes her body inside a terracotta jar with a saturated solution containing saffron. She holds a BFA from the Dr. Shariaty Teacher Training College and an MFA from Tehran University of Art and an MFA in Art and Technology Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Artist Statement

Like music, multimedia art has vast untapped power to transcend ideological divides and advance  post-cultural concerns in the contemporary world. As a great believer in the power of art and technology to carry creative storytelling into the future, I have spent the last decade integrating an academic education in the visual arts with a hybrid professional practice marshaling unique combinations of performance, photography, video and new media to engage the globalizing feminine psyche. 

I am a graduate of the Art University of Tehran’s prestigious MA program in Illustration. In 2014, my path took me from Iran, where I was an award-winning artist and art educator, to unknown horizons in Canada. Seven years later,  internationally established as an emerging voice in new forms of visual meaning-making demanded by émigré subjectivities, I am expecting my Master of Fine Arts in Art and Technology Studies from School of Art Institute  of Chicago, where the creative alliance between divergent art forms  drive my curiosity and scaffold my artistic experimentation.

Iranian by birth and newly Canadian by nationality, the silent dance between the mystical struggle between the females’ life and the aesthetics of desire are themes, which thread through all my work. I also reference the notion of the cultural materials through installations and performances layered with my own technology-based interventions. 

I tirelessly seek to learn and develop an expanded set of conceptual-technical skills to inform my ongoing critical pivots between the canvas, the body, and the screen, while simultaneously nurturing an enriched collaborative practice in object-and-time-based artworks around post-cultural concerns.

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