Leila Heller is pleased to announce The Shadow of a Fig Tree Quiets My Soul, an exhibition of work by Persian- American artist Reza Derakshani on view February 25, 2020 through April 18th, 2020. Marking his third solo show at Leila Heller in New York, Derakshani's exhibition is comprised of eight large paintings. His work celebrates both ornamentation and color fields, as the artist finds a space for figural representation in abstract aesthetics.
In the Day and Night and Fig Tree series, Derakshani explores opposing themes of the world. While aesthetically ornamented, the paintings express a duality of experiences and reflect the fullness and ambiguity of life. In the Garden Party series, Derakshani interprets traditional metaphors for heaven and the afterlife, where families communally gather and feast under tents in vivid and idyllic gardens. Inserting subjectivity through expressive brushstrokes, while gracefully interweaving strong colors, textures, and luxurious metal paints, Derakshani’s paintings often mimic poetry and music. For the artist, painting is a spiritual process that allows for a return to physicality and beauty, in a rejection of the irony that often permeates contemporary painting.