Skip to main content
All Posts By


Current Exhibit: An Art + Design Collaboration

By Exhibitions, Uncategorized, Upcoming Exhibitions

Exclusive Preview: Press and invite only November 1, 2018

Time: 7:30 – 10:30 p.m.

Public Viewing Dates: November 2, 2018 to November 15, 2018 during gallery hours

(Tues. – Sat. 12-5pm)

(Please see details below.)

(Los Angeles, California—October 1, 2018)

View the Catalogue Here

THE SPACE by ADVOCARTSY, created to raise awareness of and engagement within Iranian contemporary art, is pleased to collaborate with LA-based, Iranian Interior Designer, Ryan Saghian. This is THE SPACE’s first design and art collaboration. ADVOCARTSY’S mission is to elevate awareness and engagement with Iranian contemporary art. With this collaboration, ADVOCARTSY broadens its mission by engaging the community with a noted Iranian designer expanding public exposure. The art chosen for this debut collaboration carries a wide range of expression that will resonate and intrigue its audience within the contemporary art realm at large. “I am honored to be the first designer chosen to collaborate with ADVOCARTSY. Art is everything when it comes to interior design. It reflects the style of homeowner and it should be a representation of who you are,” says interior designer, Ryan Saghian. “As an Iranian American, Iranian Contemporary art speaks to me on a personal level, and also reveals the essence of the human condition which plays a major role in everyone’s life.” “In this collaboration, we have selected a wide range works by Iranian contemporary artists. The work appeals to the sophisticated design world with a universal connection,” says Roshi Rahnama. “All the work chosen are of museum quality and reflect the style and sophistication that Ryan Saghian brings to all his projects.” Great art has become an essential component of a modern home. The collaboration speaks to the importance of art in the home as it speaks to the self-expression of the collector. The art showcased and selected for this collaboration is from a roster ADVOCARTSY collaborating artists which reflect a wide range of expression and speak to the unique experiences of the Iranian Artists. The selection includes multimedia, sculpture, painting, and digital photography. The artists selected for this unique showing include: Hessam Abrishami, Pouya Afshar, Afsoon, Shahram Karimi, Dana Nehdaran, Mobina Nouri, Aida Izadpanah, Rebecca Setareh, Sepideh Salehi, Shilla Shakoori, and Melika Shafahi, Farnaz Zabetian.

Learn more about our Art + Design Collaboration artists: 

Hessam Abrishami

Hessam Abrishami was born in Shiraz, Iran in 1951. He has been greatly influenced by the ancient history that surrounded him as a child. Seeking a society free from the limitations of modern day Iran, Hessam left his home country to expand his knowledge and awareness of the outside, changing world. Currently, Hessam has countless private collectors world-wide and has exhibited in over 130 One-Man Gallery Shows, over 30 International Exhibitions, and multiple Museums Exhibitions. Hessam was recently presented with the “Key to the City” of Ormond Beach, Florida where his work is currently displayed in the Museum of Arts and Sciences.

Pouya Afshar

Pouya Afshar works in a diverse range of media to create artworks that challenge the socio-political concerns of both eastern and western cultures. He has exhibited his work as an animator and visual artist at renowned locations such as Harold M. Williams Auditorium at the Getty Center, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Santa Monica Art studios, among others. Currently, Pouya is an assistant professor of Art and Design at University of Massachusetts, Lowell.


Afsoon works with her own collection of vintage images to create illustrious collages. Through a combination of techniques, Afsoon’s rich, and often playful, works reflect the merging of East and West, allowing the audience to find the familiar and foreign. Afsoon’s works have been extensively exhibited and can be found worldwide in prominent collections and museums, including the British Museum, Los Angeles County Museum and Berger/YSL Collection, among others.

Aida Izadpanah

Aida Izadpanah possesses a diverse repertoire of media and styles, having worked for many years in acrylic, oil, mixed media, watercolor, photography, floral design, and porcelain painting. She specializes in European styles, ethnic Persian motifs, and modern designs, as well as dynamically textured abstract works. She is currently based in New York City.

Shahram Karimi

Shahram Karimi’s paintings portray the dilemma of the contemporary bicultural Iranian who seeks his historical and personal identity by wedding his personal past with contemporary form. Each one of Karimi’s paintings relates a fragment of his memories and national history, each a piece of his personal past. Shahram Karimi’s works are exhibited internationally.  Karimi is also a renowned curator and art critic. (New York City)

Dana Nehdaran

Dana Nehdaran studied painting in Iran and recently migrated to New York. Nehdaran’s portraits captivatingly capture the nostalgia and historical past, seamlessly connecting the past to contemporary culture.

Hadi Salehi

Hadi Salehi is a master of analog photography who resides in Los Angeles.  Salehi’s images capture diverse portraits that are nostalgic, powerful and soft, leaving a haunting quality that lingers in the psyche.

Sepideh Salehi

Sepideh Salehi is based in New York City and works in collages, paintings, printing, photography, and video animation. Her works revolve around the poetics of the veil as well as stories from her country of origin.

Rebecca Setareh

Rebecca Setareh has garnered international attention for her talents. She has been featured in numerous exhibitions nationally, and has most recently received praise for her unique, graceful integration of rock and bronze. Beautifully so, Rebecca creates an aesthetically-whole form from inherently contrasting materials in a creative process that represents the struggle of life itself.

Melika Shafahi

Melika Shafahi was born in 1984 in Tehran, Iran. She lives and works in Tehran & Paris. In her photographic work she aims to show the hidden part of life in Iran, the private life of her generation who were born after the 1979 revolution, a generation far from religious fundamentalism. Her artistic focus is on the contradictions between public and private life of the Iranians, as well as how westernization has affected her generation.

Shilla Shakoori

Shilla Shakoori is a painter whose diverse artistic output springs from an exploration of the synthesis between native and adopted cultures. Shakoori’s works are strongly influenced by Iranian philosophy and myth, with strong influences by Rumi.

Shadi Yousefian

Shadi Yousefian is currently based in San Francisco. Yousefian’s mixed media work reflects and addresses issues that touch on universal themes such as loss, dislocation, alienation, and reinvention. Shadi has work in the permanent collection of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, among others.

Farnaz Zabetian

Farnaz Zabetian paints manifestations of daily life, exploring the struggles of Eastern women as they are forced to navigate social taboos and ideals since birth. Her symbolic and expressive portraits of these women depict their private thoughts and yearnings, as well as their perceived relationship with the rapidly modernizing world. Zabetian is based in the San Francisco bay area.

General information:

Private showing: November 1st (INVITE ONLY)

Public viewing: November 2 – November 15

Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 12.– 5 p.m.


9th and San Pedro Building, 924 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles, 90015

Free parking: Behind the San Pedro Building

ABOUT RYAN SAGHIAN  Born in Los Angeles, Ryan received his Bachelor of Science degree in Interior Design from the Art Institute of California’s CIDA design school. With over 10 years of experience in the field, Ryan has endured a body of design skills taking human elements into consideration when designing a space. To add to his extensive portfolio of work, Ryan recently launched Ryan Saghian Collection, a custom couture furniture collection available through J Alexander and his new flagship showroom in Los Angeles. All pieces are handmade in Los Angeles and can be fully customized. In addition to his new furniture line and showroom, Ryan also recently introduced his own Wallcoverings collection, handmade with rich, natural materials including fine silk, cork, and grasscloths.


Instagram: @RyanSaghian

Twitter: @RyanSaghian


THE SPACE is a permanent extension of ADVOCARTSY’s Art Brief exhibition series launched in 2015, a contemporary fine arts platform that aims to raise awareness and engagement with Iranian contemporary art. ADVOCARTSY hosts diverse fine art events, educational programs, exhibitions, and other events, with a wide range of collaborations, both nationally and internationally as a nexus for artists, critics, curators, and collectors. The 1,800 square-foot-space is ideally situated in the heart of Downtown LA’s Fashion District, minutes from the rapidly expanding arts district and LA’s newest museum, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.



Instagram: @Advocartsy

ADVOCARTSY Presents ‘The World is My Home’

By Uncategorized
“Art is the most intense form of individualism that the world has known.”
-Oscar Wilde
                   Shahram Karimi, who recently curated In Between I and II at MANA Contemporary writes, Over the past decade we have witnessed serious attention towards Iranian art and artists. Through numerous international exhibitions Iranian art has established a strong and clear position in the art world. Therefore, we must begin to ask ourselves what distinctive characteristics modern Iranian art presents in relation to Iran’s abundant cultural heritage and what are the contributions of artist who live outside of Iran? The answer to this question will lead us towards a deeper understanding of the new Iranian cultural identity. We must strive to avoid familiar clichés and locate a more profound understanding of these new aspects and visions of Iranian art.
                    National artistic identity, arguably even socio-cultural identity, is a product of the sum of individual artistic creativity. Artists combine their history with contemporary influences of their particular present day social contexts. The common indicators of traditional culture no longer represent the identity of modern artists.
                  While this group of work is varied in form and content, it is the ideas of authenticity and unique gesture that unite them. Each artwork has an exceptional sense of spontaneity, freedom and resolve that suggests the character of the maker.
(b. 1961 in Iran, lives and works in London, UK) combines collage, photography, painting and text that deals with her nomadic lifestyle where the East merges with the West to create something that is at once familiar while simultaneously foreign. Afsoon has been exhibited in the United States, Europe and the Middle East. Afsoon is also part of several permanent collections include Los Angeles County Museum, The British Museum and the Berger/YSL Collection. She is included in LACMA’s upcoming exhibition, In The Fields of Empty Days: The Intersection of Past and Present in Iranian Art, opening May 6, 2018.
Roya Farassat   
(b. 1964 in Tehran, Iran, lives and works in New York, NY) work is largely influenced by culture and tradition while embracing a distorted sense of reality. The themes of female Identity, isolation, violence and oppression animate her sculptures and paintings. Farassat has had solo exhibitions at Shirin Gallery, New York, NY, 2015 and Leila Heller Gallery, New York, NY, 2011. She has been apart of several group exhibitions including, Albin Polasek Museum, Winter Park, Florida, 2018; Station Independent Projects, New York, NY, 2017 and Gallery Kayafas, Boston, Massachusetts, 2017. She has also been interviewed and published by the New York Times, Boston Globe and Hyperallergic among others.
Shahram Karimi
(b. 1957 in Shiraz, Iran, lives and works between Germany and New York, NY) paintings portray the dilemma in the contemporary bicultural Iranian who seeks their historical and personal identity through wedding their personal past with contemporary form. He has exhibited worldwide including Iran, Turkey, Germany, Switzerland and the United States. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Leila Heller Gallery, New York, NY, 2016; Syra Gallery, Washington D.C., 2015 and Brigitte Schenk Gallery, Cologne, Germany, 2015.
Dana Nehdaran
(b. 1982, Chaharbagh, Iran, lives and works in New York, NY) received his BA in painting from Soureh Art University in Shiraz in 2007. Recent solo exhibitions include Rira Gallery, Dubai, UAE, 2013 and Shirin Art Gallery, Tehran, Iran, 2011. Nehdaran was apart of ADVOCARTSY’s Art Brief II: Iranian Contemporary North America, Los Angeles, 2016. Dana has been a member of the Iranian Painter Association since 2007. Nehdaran utilizes classical painting techniques to focus on the tension between past and present.
May 20 – June 10, 2018
Tuesday-Saturday, 12 pm to 5 pm
Parking available on premise
ADVOCARTSY is a collaborative fine arts platform that addresses and engages
with Iranian Contemporary Arts both nationally and internationally.
Instagram: @Advocartsy
for additional information please contact
for press inquires please contact

ADVOCARTSY Presents Sepideh Salehi Reveal

By Uncategorized

THE SPACE by ADVOCARTSY is pleased to present Reveal, a solo exhibition of works by Sepideh Salehi. This is Salehi’s first solo exhibition with the gallery.

Sepideh Salehi’s practice utilizes painting, photography, drawing and animation to explore ideas of displacement, memory and violence revolving around the poetics of ‘the veil’.  Through Salehi’s use and abstraction of Iranian iconography and language she challenges and ruminates on her experience as a women and immigrant from Iran. She states, “I have used the traditional Muslim prayer stone as a starting point. I borrow the etched images on the prayer stones to create patterns through rubbing and printing. The repeated images of the stones create a rhythm leading me in the end, to an imagery revealing layers upon layers. They form a pattern, or echo words that become evident through this deliberate meditative work process.” Her use of negative space and repetition create delicately intense patterns and compositions that veil and unveil the origin of subject, at times giving protection and obscurity but simultaneously exposing and unearthing the vulnerability in memories. Salehi’s body of work and specifically her use of ‘the veil’ is a protest that is currently shared with women worldwide but especially in a time when women in Iran are contesting the compulsory hijab rule imposed upon them,” says ADVOCARTSY director Roshi Rahnama.

Salehi’s use of layering, both physically and conceptually, are used as a device to conceal emotions mediated through decisive yet sporadic and hypnotizing mark making. She often uses words and writing as a form of drawing. She says, “These drawings emerge from a union between the immediacy of line and the direct and literal communicative properties of writing.” Salehi uses her experience as an immigrant as a direct material in her practice manifesting through her hand but also sees her work moving beyond the confines of her culture. ­Her seemingly meditative and minimal practice complicates itself with the intricacy of the unanswered in a world filled with over sharing and influx of information.

Sepideh Salehi was born in Tehran, Iran, and lives and works between NYC and Washington DC. She received her MFA from Academia di Belle Arti of Florence, Italy in visual and multimedia art. Recent solo exhibitions include Strappa, Rogue Space, New York, NY (2016) and Traces: Drawing in Motion, Kentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NY (2013). Recent group exhibitions include Art Brief III: The (Un)Draped Woman, Arena 1 Gallery, Santa Monica, CA (2017), Peace on Paper, Iran Contemporary Art Biennale at Niavaran Cultural Center, Tehran, Iran (2016), Archimedes Bathtub, Lorimoto Gallery, Ridgewood, NY (2015), and Are We Already Gone?, Flicker Lab, New York, NY (2014).

For press inquiries please email

ADVOCARTSY Presents Pouya Afshar’s Solo Exhibition EN MASSE

By Events

THE SPACE by ADVOCARTSY is pleased to present En Masse, a mixed media installation by Massachusetts-based Iranian-American artist Pouya Afshar. This is Afshar’s first solo exhibition with ADVOCARTSY.

En Masse is composed of paintings, drawings, and animations that explore the process of mourning on a personal, communal, and historical level. Afshar utilizes Persian and Muslim Shiite mourning rituals known as Ta’zie as a mode of contemplation. In Persian culture, Ta’zie is a centuries-old passion play inspired by historical and religious events that symbolize epic spirit and resistance.

En Masse was inspired by the death of Afshar’s mentor. Afshar’s search for internal peace led to an understanding of how individuals find catharsis as a group, whether as performers on stage or as audience members. Growing up in Iran, Afshar’s work is also informed by his exposure of Ta’zie plays. He materializes these emotions and traditions through paintings and drawings that he transforms into animation and video projections depicting his memories and dreams.

The notion of recollection is also explored in this exhibition through mounted layers of video projections that symbolize particles within one’s imagination. In one animation, a galloping horse—a key element of Ta’zie—is accompanied by a mash up soundtrack of Iranian percussion and a recording of the Catholic prayer Ave Maria.

“With this project, I aim to create dialogue on how one can recover from a loved one’s death and why community creates a platform to do so through art,” explains Afshar.

En Masse’s process of creation is as important to Afshar as the final product, which continues to evolve. The project has been his own grieving process and has pushed him, both as an artist and, more importantly, as a human being. “It has forced me to climb out of a protective shell and into a vulnerable atmosphere devoid of artistic ego,” says Afshar. “En Masse is a memorial service for whomever we miss. A reminder for us to embrace life’s inherited experiences and, if necessary, leave them behind.”

“Afshar’s work examines socio-political paradigms of Iranian culture through various media in order to offer an opportunity for cross-cultural understanding, while weaving his personal experiences with universal understandings of compassion and empathy,” says ADVOCARTSY founder Roshi Rahmana. “ADVOCARTSY is proud to represent Pouya in the United States.”
Afshar will be included in In the Fields of Empty Days: The Intersection of Past and Present in Iranian Art, presented by LACMA opening May 6, 2018.


Pouya Afshar is an alumnus from the California Institute of Arts Character Animation department and is a graduate of the University of California Los Angeles Graduate Department of Film and Television focusing in Animation and Digital Media. He has exhibited his work throughout the United States and Middle East, including: Harold M. Williams Auditorium at the Getty Center, Bovard Auditorium at University of Southern California, Royce Hall at University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Santa Monica Art studios, 18th street Art Center, and numerous galleries and art fairs around the world. Pouya has presented his research at Stanford University, Harvard University, University of Southern California, School of Museum of Fine Arts Boston, and Residency Unlimited NY. Pouya is the creator, character designer and producer of the animated series Rostam in Wonderland and the co-creator of 1PA2PA comics. He is currently an assistant professor of art and Design at University of Massachusetts, Lowell.


General information:

Exhibition dates: January 14–28, 2018

Public opening: Sunday, January 14, 2018, 4–7 p.m.

Closing reception: Sunday, January 28, 2018 4–7 p.m.

Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 11 a.m.– 5 p.m.

Address: 9th and San Pedro Building, 924 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles, 90015

Free parking: Behind the San Pedro Building

The Poetics of Diaspora: Iranian Contemporary Art

By Events

Today’s in-demand contemporary Iranian artists—many of whom have now settled abroad—are working in a range of media, reflecting on issues such as identity, exile, and their multifaceted cultural heritage. For the first time, artnet Auctions will be focusing on these important artists and is proud to partner with ADVOCARTSY and guest curator Roshi Rahnama for The Poetics of Diaspora: Iranian Contemporary Art, a curated sale live for bidding on artnet Auctions from November 9–21.

To celebrate this partnership, artnet and ADVOCARTSY cordially invite you to an exclusive opening reception at THE SPACE in Downtown Los Angeles on Sunday, November 12. The event will feature an exhibition of highlights which will be on view for the duration of the sale, along with custom cocktails and the opportunity to learn more about, or place bids, on these vibrant works.




VIP Preview Sunday, November 12
4–7 p.m.

Then available for public viewing till

Tuesday, November 21


Gallery Hours:

Tuesday – Friday , 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

or by appointment



924 S San Pedro Street

Los Angeles, CA 90015

Top artwork:
Googoosh I and Googoosh III (detail, set of two), 2010
Archival prints on Somerset artist paper
Edition of 8
Est. 6,000–8,000 USD
16.53 x 23.23 in. each

SHADI YOUSEFIAN’s Solo Exhibition Closing Reception

By Events

Please join us on Sunday, October, 22, 2017 from 4-7 PM for

SHADI YOUSEFIAN’s Solo Exhibition Closing reception

at 924 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA, 90015

At 5pm Leah Mirahkor will lead a gallery walk through entitled Aesthetics of Longing.

Leah Mirakhor teaches at Yale University and received her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Mirakhor’s works on 20th and 21st century American and diasporic literature and culture has been published in The Los Angeles Times, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Studies in American Jewish Literature and African American Review. 

ADVOCARTSY Presents Shadi Yousefian: A Solo Exhibition

By Events

Please Join us for  

Shadi Yousefian’s Solo Exhibition 


from 4-7 pm on October 8, 2017


 at 924 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA, 90015

parking and refreshments available on premise


Joining Downtown Los Angeles’ burgeoning art scene is the new contemporary art and project venue, THE SPACE by ADVOCARTSY.

The new art space is a permanent extension of ADVOCARTSY’s Art Brief exhibition series launched in 2015, a contemporary fine arts platform that aims to raise awareness of and engagement with Iranian contemporary art. ADVOCARTSY will use THE SPACE to host diverse fine art events, educational programs and exhibitions, with a wide range of collaborations, both nationally and internationally as a nexus for artists, critics, curators, and collectors.

The 1,800-square-foot-space is ideally situated in the heart of Downtown LA’s Fashion District, minutes from the rapidly expanding arts district and LA’s newest museum, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

The venue was born out of necessity. “I needed a physical location to sustain the energy from the Art Brief series and to continue the engagement between Iranian contemporary art and the art community,” says ADVOCARTSY founder, Roshi Rahnama.

THE SPACE’s inaugural exhibition features the work of artist Shadi Yousefian. “I chose Shadi for the opening exhibition because of her expansive body of work directly dealing with cultural identity and the immigrant experience,” says Rahnama. “Her intimate combination of personal experience with social and political issues results in a skillfully confrontational energy while utilizing minimalism, photography, and collage as a way to mediate that encounter.”

Born in Tehran, Yousefian moved to the U.S. as a teenager. “My work has always been informed by a duality that I’ve experienced as an immigrant living in the United States,” says Yousefian. “I feel like I’m being pushed into the realm of ‘the Other’ despite the fact that I’m a citizen and I feel like my work becomes more universal and less personal, speaking for several communities and not just Iranian-Americans.”

The exhibition spans 15 years, going from her early photographic work to mixed media constructions, and includes new work being exhibited for the first time. In the show will be Yousefian’s Universal Identity Series (2006)She photographed nude portraits of a diverse array of people, cut and distorted the negatives and reassembled them, printing the composite portraits lifesize on canvas. The result is an examination of the fluidity of identity—and how it is colored by the viewer’s perspective and assumptions.

In her series Letters (2006–2017) Yousefian uses decades-old letters from friends and family in Iran. Handwritten in a pre-Internet world, the letters have been transformed from a personal archive under the artist’s bed to a distillation of feelings and specific times. By cutting the letters up and mounting them on wood, she at once destroys and preserves the documents, and gives viewers an intimate look into the immigrant experience.

What emerges is a perpetually fragmented identity of the outsider, conjured through the depiction of nostalgic tales of loss, sadness, and redemption.


General information:

Exhibition dates: Oct. 8–22, 2017

Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Address: 924 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles, CA, 90015

Parking: Available on premise

Future events at THE SPACE include a solo exhibition of Sepideh Salehi’s photography, abstract works and video in December and a solo exhibition of Pouya Afshar’s installations and moving imagery in January.



ADVOCARTSY is a collaborative fine arts platform that addresses and engages with Iranian

Contemporary Arts both nationally and internationally. Roshi Rahnama is the founder, principal and

director of ADVOCARTSYTHE SPACE by ADVOCARTSY produces diverse art events, projects

and exhibitions with artists, curators and galleries to further awareness and community engagement.

Facebook at:

Instagram: @Advocartsy

for additional information please contact

for press inquires please contact


the-space-logo-png924 S. San Pedro St. | Los Angeles | CA | 90015

Collecting Modern and Contemporary Middle East Art

By Events

On Tuesday, June 6, 2017, a panel discussion on Collecting Modern and Contemporary Middle East Art took place at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, LACMA.

Panelists included:

Linda Komaroff
Curator and Dept. Head, Art of the Middle East, LACMA

Houman M. Sarshar, Ph.D.
Founder, the Kimia Foundation & Los Angeles-based collector, Iranian art

Roxane Zand
Deputy Chairman, Middle East and Gulf Region, Sotheby’s

Rebecca Morse
Associate Curator, Wallace Annenberg Photography Dept., LACMA


Collecting Modern and Contemporary Middle East Art” was organized through the efforts of Art of the Middle East: Contemporary, LACMA, ADVOCARTSY, and Sotheby’s.

Thank you to our exceptional panelists who by their time, effort, presence and expertise made this panel discussion possible. We also thank our dear friends, who with their interest in this program, and attendance supported our efforts.

We are thrilled to share with you a recorded session of the panel and images below.

Listen below


Image Gallery


By Events
ADVOCARTSY presents its third installation of a multi-artist show entitled



Closing Reception: ART TALK


Saturday, February 18, 2017

3PM – 5PM


Panelists Include:

Dr. Homa Mahmoudi, PhD, Clinical Psychologist and

Sandra Williams, Assistant Curator of Art of the Middle East Department at LACMA Moderated by Roshi Rahnama, Founder & Principal of ADVOCARTSY

Arena 1 Gallery, Santa Monica

 for more information: