Over several decades, Oakland-based multimedia artist Ali Dadgar has explored universal themes of censorship, colonization, ‘otherness’, and identity filtered through his own Iranian and American experiences. Working across multiple mediums and series simultaneously, Dadgar’s ideas take shape through performance and 2-dimensional mixed media art. He is deeply familiar with the conventions of printmaking and formal Western approaches to art, which he absorbs and upturns through his practice. By layering historical symbols, handwritten notes, photographs, self-portraits, and found materials from rugs to maps, Dadgar’s art maintains an undercurrent of dark humor that strives to recontextualize the unexpected. These elements are manipulated either digitally or manually, through painting or drawing, and form a new visual language – one of redaction, remapping, and erasure. Through autobiography and self-deprecation, Dadgar summons figures of otherness in a place filled with tradition, history, humor, and paradox.
Dadgar (b. 1962) received his BFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland, in 1989 followed by an MFA in Art Practice from the University of California, Berkeley in 2007. He was a lecturer in the Department of Art Practice at the University of California Berkeley between 2006 and 2009 and is the recipient of multiple awards, including the UC Berkeley Outstanding GSI Award in 2007. His work has been placed in prominent private and public collections, including the University of California Berkeley Morrison Library.
ADVOCARTSY is a contemporary art platform specializing in Iranian contemporary art.
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