Interview: Raha Fard
Luca Curci talks with Raha Fard during RITUALS, first appointment of the ANIMA MUNDI 2022 art fair, at Palazzo Bembo – Venice Grand Canal.
Raha Fard is an Iranian-Canadian artist, based in GTA, Canada. She had a Master’s degree in telecommunication engineering, and 15 years of experience; before studying drawing and painting at OCAD University. She works in multiple disciplines such as drawing and painting, installation, digital art, and making short films. Investigating her own identity as a member of the Iranian diaspora, her works are rooted in Persian traditional architecture and Persian poetry, with a focus on cultural and mystical themes which help her to explore and define her identity regarding her motherland and the mystical beliefs which she was raised with. Her works also engage with critical perspectives related to social issues happening in the world.
Luca Curci – How did you get to your current artistic practice?
Raha Fard – I am coming from the technical world, actually, I have a master’s degree in Telecommunication Engineering, and I have worked in that area for 15 years. Once I came to Canada from my hometown in Iran, I decided to follow my passion, my heart. Now, I am graduated in Drawing and Painting from OCAD University, and I am so pleased that I was able to change the path of my life. My art talks about my lived experience, as a Persian diasporic woman in Canada, and it is strongly connected with my cultural identity and mystical beliefs.
LC – What is the most challenging part about creating your artwork?
RF – The most challenging part for me is the first step to finding the approach and design that makes my artistic senses satisfied.
LC – What are your thoughts while you paint? Do you have any habits or rituals while you work?
RF – Painting time for me is a time that I don’t think about anything but art, it relieves me from material thoughts around me. I can’t paint if there is no music playing in my studio. I usually listen to Mozart, Chopin, Bach, or Persian traditional music like Shajariyan. Very fewer moments I might listen to Persia Pop music while I am painting.
LC – Where do you find your inspiration?
RF – My inspiration mostly comes from my feelings in my lived experience, and my works semiotics inspired by Persian rugs, Farsi calligraphy, and tiles motifs from Islamic Classic Persian architecture. Also, Farsi poems by different famous Persian poets are another important source of inspiration for me.
LC – How is your creative process?
RF – After inspiring and feeling the subject matter, I spend a long time researching to find out the best approach, design, and material and do many sketches in this process. The last step is doing the work, which may take from several days to several months long.
LC – What do you think about the concept of this exhibition? How did it inspire you?
RF – Anima Mundi concept is one of the deepest concepts which is very rare nowadays and is forgotten in our busy lives. “King of the world” conveys my feelings for God, the source of power and generosity in the world, and the refuge for all souls. This feeling relieves all of my fears and anxieties in any circumstances in my life.
LC – Can you explain something about the artworks you have in our exhibition?
RF – In “King of the World”, an abstract figure of the Poem, in Farsi calligraphy has made the patterns, which are inspired by floral patterns in Persian rugs. The patterns radiate from the source of brightness and it encompasses everybody and everything in the world. ” King of the World or شاه جهان ” is a Rumi’s poem. Rumi was a Persian poet, his poems mainly feature mystical, and philosophical themes.
LC – What is your idea about ITSLIQUID GROUP?
RF – ITSLIQUID GROUP is one of the most professional art groups I have worked with. They care about professionalism in running the exhibitions, the concepts, and locations, and also artistic ethics.
LC – Did you enjoy cooperating with ITSLIQUID? Would you suggest collaboration with us?
RF – Yes, I enjoyed having an exhibition with you in many different aspects, and the main reason I think was the artistic and professional ethics that you have. I recommend ITS LIQUID GROUP to my artist friends, so they can have their exhibition in one of the most important cities in the art world.