Simorgh: Keyvan Shovir's Ode to Unity and Self-Discovery
Introducing Keyvan Shovir's "Simorgh" - A Tale of Unity and Transcendence
In the realm of contemporary art, where narratives and symbolism intertwine, Keyvan Shovir's installation "Simorgh" stands as a profound exploration of unity, self-discovery, and cultural heritage. Born amidst the backdrop of the Iran-Iraq war in 1985, Shovir's childhood was marked by stories that offered solace from the surrounding chaos. Among these tales, the story of Simorgh, a mythical bird from Iranian literature, held a special place in his heart.
From Tehran to San Francisco: A Journey Reflected in Art
Upon migrating to San Francisco in 2011, Shovir found himself reflecting on themes of displacement and immigration. The city's rich tapestry of cultures and languages drew him closer to the narrative of Simorgh, where a group of birds embark on a quest through seven valleys to find the mythical bird, symbolizing the journey toward unity.
"Simorgh": An Immersive Multi-Sound Installation
The "Simorgh" installation is an intricate blend of sound and sculpture. Comprising thirty handcrafted and machine-made birdhouses arranged in a spiral, it mirrors the collective spirit of the birds in the story. Each birdhouse emits sounds from different birds around the world, representing the diverse voices of humanity.
A Homage to Persian Architectural Traditions
The design of the birdhouses in "Simorgh" pays tribute to the architectural history of Persian human dwellings. This artistic choice bridges traditional Persian art with contemporary themes of unity and diversity.
The Seven Valleys: A Symbolic Journey
Each birdhouse in the installation symbolizes a stage in the journey through the seven valleys - quest, love, understanding, independence, unity, astonishment, and finally, poverty and nothingness. This progression reflects the seeker's path toward unity and self-discovery, where each stage brings its challenges and revelations.
An Experience of Unity and Self-Discovery
"Simorgh" invites viewers to experience the journey of the birds, moving through the valleys, and encountering the immersive world of sounds and symbolism. The installation transcends being a mere narrative to become a medium of exploration into the human journey towards unity and transcendence.
The Valley of Astonishment: Dissolution of Individuality
In the valley of astonishment, the installation emphasizes the dissolution of individuality, where one becomes part of a larger divine essence. It's a metaphorical ocean where past, present, and future merge, leading to a state of eternal peace and unity.
Conclusion: A Journey Beyond Art
Keyvan Shovir's "Simorgh" is more than an art installation; it's a journey that traverses the landscapes of tradition, unity, and the human quest for transcendence. Through "Simorgh," Shovir pays homage to his cultural heritage while inviting viewers to reflect on their path toward unity in the diverse tapestry of the human experience.