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Arash Nassiri Extra mural exhibition « Le parfait flâneur » at la Biennale de Lyon

“I like creating ambiguous situations. Worlds that seem like our own, but which could just as well be imaginary.”

Merging Tehran with Los Angeles, Tehran-geles is the name of a neighbourhood in LA which is home to a large Iranian community. This portmanteau word is also the title of Arash Nassiri’s video, a kind of “portmanteau-film” in which Iranian craftsmen’s shop signs have been plastered across an aerial shot of Los Angeles. As opposed to an anticipatory scenario, here it is Tehran’s past which has been projected over a Californian present. The soundtrack evokes the Americanisation of the Iranian capital during the 1970s, via scraps of conversations recorded using Skype. This software for making video calls works as a virtual bridge between a fantasised past and an imaginary present. Arash Nassiri has extended these round trips into the exhibition space by setting up a number of advertising hoardings, which have been denuded of their slogans, thus becoming “abstract paintings conveying absent messages”. He thus transcends architectural transposition to create a “third landscape”, which is ambiguous in its relationship with time and space.

Arash Nassiri was born in Tehran in 1986. He is a graduate of the École nationale supérieure des arts décoratifs, Paris, and has continued his studies at Le Fresnoy, Studio national des arts contemporains.


From 09/09/2015 to 03/10/2015