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Ascension Series: A Soaring Narrative of Conflict and Hope by Keyvan Shovir

Unveiling Keyvan Shovir's Masterpiece: The Ascension Series

In the world of contemporary art, certain works stand as poignant reminders of history, culture, and personal narratives. Keyvan Heydari-Shovir, renowned as CK1 in the realm of Middle Eastern street art, presents his groundbreaking "Ascension Series." Born amidst the tumult of Tehran in 1985, Shovir's series is not just an artistic expression but a deep reflection of his journey from a war-torn past to a creatively abundant present.

A Journey Through Memories and Materials

The "Ascension Series" represents a profound synthesis of Shovir's personal memories of the Iran-Iraq war's final years and his contemporary commentary on global complexities. The series, an array of meticulously crafted wooden sculptures, transcends traditional artistic boundaries, offering a deep exploration of flight as a spiritual journey.

From War's Echoes to Artistic Echoes

Shovir's sculptures emerge against a canvas of childhood recollections, where sirens wailed, and the skies roared with the sounds of Iraqi jets. This series is an introspective examination of conflict's lasting impact, drawing inspiration from the Farsi verb "Salaka" - meaning to follow or travel. In these pieces, flight becomes a metaphorical pathway influenced by Shovir's memories of warplanes and current geopolitical tensions.

The Role of Wood: A Symbolic Choice

Significantly, Shovir chooses wood as the primary material for the series. This choice is a nod to Iranian tradition, where woodcraft plays a significant role, particularly in musical instrument construction. This transition from the metallic essence of warplanes to the warmth and resonance of wood symbolizes a transformation from war's starkness to nuanced artistic expression.

The Artist: Keyvan Shovir

Keyvan Shovir's journey as an artist is as captivating as his works. A pioneer in the Iranian graffiti movement since 2002, Shovir's artistry is deeply rooted in Iranian traditional arts like miniature painting and carpet design. He holds a Bachelor's degree in painting from the University of Tabriz and a Master of Fine Arts from the California College of the Arts. His works, interweaving the Persian alphabet and Islamic art motifs, echo the voices of Iranian poets like Hafez and Rumi.

A Confluence of Memory, Theory, and Art

The "Ascension Series" is more than a collection of sculptures; it is a confluence of memory, theory, and contemporary art. It invites viewers to engage with narratives extending beyond personal reminiscences, resonating within academic discourse and challenging perspectives on war, flight, and transformation.

Conclusion: A Visual and Conceptual Odyssey

Keyvan Shovir's "Ascension Series" is a visual and conceptual odyssey, showcasing his adeptness in navigating the realms of academic and contemporary art. It's a series that invites introspection and reflection, offering a profound exploration of materials, cultural symbolism, and deeply personal reflections on growing up amidst the shadows of conflict.

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