Antiflag,  woven fabrics, iron, 2017. Photo: Rachele Salvioli

Antiflag, woven fabrics, iron, 2017. Photo: Rachele Salvioli

In Farkhondeh Shahroudi work, the language of poetry becomes sculptural, like her sculptures made of hand-stitched fabric. She seeks to create, with language, a space of attraction for images, without any distinction between the bi-dimensionality of the poetic text and the tri-dimensionality of the sculpture.

These are seemingly anthropomorphic creatures, animal and plant figures, suspended or staked to the earth. The stitches are the means to hold inside and at the same time exhibit an indefinable memory of a loss, scars, but also a primordial alphabet, the origins of a concrete writing that becomes one with the sculpture.


For Farkhondeh Shahroudi, her "space" par excellence is the carpet, deriving from the ancient symbolism of the oriental garden depicted in Persian carpets as a reflection of paradise. They have always been present in her work, from her first hybridizations with painting in the '90s. In the successive decades they became "mobile gardens", heterotopic spaces, according to the term coined by French philosopher Michel Foucault, able to challenge or neutralize all other spaces because they are endowed with an other spatiality, which on one hand frees the imagination, and on the other, gives form to that sense of not belonging that distinguishes the condition of the artist in exile.

The flags, also made of carpets or woven textiles, are in reality Antiflag: banners stripped of ideology and deterritorialized, supported by a simple scaffold of iron rods.

Whatever space Farkhondeh Shahroudi decides to explore, she creates a separate and poetic world, fixed in a timeless and poetic suspension, such as the enclosed perfection of the garden of Persian carpets. But the spaces also open, by osmosis, to the outside, in the weaving of stories past and present, where social and personal spheres, both intimate and political, tend to intertwine.

Es ist entzückend wedelnde Vorhang im Wind zum Gespräch zu bringen,  painted and stitched fabrics, 2017. Photo: Rachele Salvioli

Es ist entzückend wedelnde Vorhang im Wind zum Gespräch zu bringen, painted and stitched fabrics, 2017. Photo: Rachele Salvioli


Farkhondeh Shahroudi (1962, Tehran) left her country in 1990 and found political asylum in Germany; she currently lives and works in Berlin. After studying painting at the University Al-Zahra in Tehran and design at the University of Dortmund, she directed her artistic research to the use of textile materials while sewing became predominant, in a constant dialog with her poetic writing. Her sculptures of the human body made from hand-sewn fabric and covered in Farsi writing are housed at several museums, including the collection of the British Museum in London.

Her personal and collective exhibitions include: ACUD Galerie, Berlin 2018; Spatial Poetry, Lottozero textile laboratories, Prato, Italy, 2017; Urban, Kommunale Galerie Berlin, Berlin, Germany 2016; Symbiosis of Two Worlds, Palais Namaskar, Marrakech, Morocco, 2013; Farkhondeh Shahroudi: Kunst und Text, personale, Art Laboratory, Berlin, Germany, 2007; Word into Art, The British Museum, London, England, 2006; Wächter/Guards, personale, Museum Pergamon, Museum of Islamic Art, Berlin, Germany, 2005.