Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth Presents
FOCUS: Kamrooz Aram
March 31-June 17, 2018
The FOCUS series is organized by the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth for the Director's Council, a group that supports acquisitions at the Museum. The series features three solo exhibitions annually, organized by Associate Curator Alison Hearst. FOCUS exhibitions are open to the public and are included in general museum admission: $10 for adults; $4 for seniors (60+) and students with identification; free for children 12 and under; free for Modern members.
Spanning painting, sculpture, collage, and installation, Kamrooz Aram's work investigates the complex relationship between Western modernism and classical non-Western art. By highlighting their formal connections, he reveals the typically downplayed role that non-Western art and design have played in the development of modernism and its drive toward abstraction. Challenging the traditionally Euro-centric narrative established by art history, Aram's work sets forth to disrupt this perceived hierarchy by merging and equalizing Western and non-Western forms. The artist will present all new work for this exhibition.
In the painting Ornamental Composition for Social Spaces I, 2016, the foreground features black and white triangles arranged on a grid. Triangles are found in pre-modern architecture, such as Persian stucco design from the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, and modernism, such as Suprematist painting from the early twentieth century and mid-century Italian architectural ornament. Alongside the formal, hard-edged geometric structures, Aram's painting includes multiple red-hued floral motifs sourced from Persian carpets. By merging these forms, Aram elevates the traditionally decorative floral elements and proposes a more global and inclusive approach to abstract painting.
Aram's installations consist of sculpture, painting, and devices often used in museum exhibition display, such as pedestals, to point to the nature of exhibition design and how museological contexts influence the way viewers understand and approach the artworks presented. In the tableau A Monument for Living in Defeat, 2016, Aram playfully uses a painting as a backdrop, with the canvas partially obscured behind two small sculptures that are elevated on elegant wooden pedestals. This placement downplays the painting while emphasizing the sculptures, raising questions as to how we assign meaning and worth to certain objects based on how they are staged.
Kamrooz Aram was born in 1978 in Shiraz, Iran, and currently lives in Brooklyn. He received an MFA from Columbia University in 2003 and a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2001. He has shown internationally and nationally, including solo exhibitions at the Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens, Deurle, Belgium; Green Art Gallery, Dubai; The Suburban, Chicago; LA><ART, Los Angeles; and the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams. Aram's work has been shown in many group exhibitions, including Beauty Reigns: A Baroque Sensibility in Recent Painting, McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, 2014; the Busan Biennale, 2006; Greater New York2005, P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center and The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2005; and the Prague Biennale I, 2003. Public collections that include his work are The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Cincinnati Art Museum, Ohio; and M+, Hong Kong.
The Director's Council
The Director's Council was formed in 1985 and supports the Modern with an annual acquisition for the permanent collection. The Director's Council sponsors the FOCUS series, which presents three solo exhibitions each year. Each exhibition opens with a private cocktail reception for the Council, giving the members an opportunity to meet the featured artist and discuss his or her work. One piece by each artist is chosen by the Museum director and curator to be part of the final selection voted on at the Council's Purchase Meeting each May. This format provides members with an in-depth understanding of the Modern's acquisitions process and offers a spirited and popular series of events. The annual dues, $600, include all the benefits of an Associate/Family-level membership and invitations to exclusive Director's Council events.
For a checklist, high-resolution images, or to schedule an interview, please e-mail the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth
3200 Darnell Street
Fort Worth, Texas 76107
Museum Gallery Hours
Tue 10 am-7 pm (Feb-Apr, Jun-Jul, Sep-Nov)
Tue-Sun 10 am-5 pm
Fri 10 am-8 pm
General Admission Prices (includes special exhibitions)
$4 for students with ID and seniors (60+)
$10 for adults (13+)
Free for children 12 and under
Free for Modern members
Free every Sunday and half-price every Wednesday.
Tue-Fri 11 am-2:30 pm
Sat-Sun 10 am-3 pm
Fri 5 pm-8:30 pm
Coffee, snacks, and dessert Tue-Sun 10 am-4:30 pm
The Modern is closed Mondays and holidays, including New Year's Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas.