Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian has an international reputation for sculpture and drawing that fuses traditional Persian patterns based in mathematics with the geometric abstract art she got to know while living in New York City in the 1960s. The artist’s primary materials¬–mirror and painted glass–were used extensively in traditional Persian architecture. Her work develops out of her interest in the serial progression of rectilinear forms, such as triangles, pentagons, and hexagons. Large sculptural reliefs with surfaces of cut mirror mosaic and reverse-glass painting form the core of Mirror Variations: The Art of Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian. Works in the Convertible Series are multipart reliefs comprised of nearly-identical, interlocking elements which can be exhibited in a variety of configurations, each designed by the artist. Based on an ancient honeycomb dome design, the work Untitled (Muqarnas) unfolds like symmetrical mirrored wings. The exhibition also includes drawings featuring complex geometric motifs in jewel-tone colors.
Credit: Monir Farmanfarmaian (Iranian, b. 1924). Tir (Convertible Series), 2015. Mirror, reverse-glass painting, plaster on wood, 63 x 63 x 6 inches. Grand Rapids Art Museum. Museum Purchase, Wege Fund, 2018.1a-f. Photo by Robert Divers Herrick.