Born in 1979 and currently living in Tehran, Iran, artist Afarin Sajedi creates haunting yet vivid surreal works. She often depicts close-ups of people—usually women, usually strange. Sometimes her subjects speak to you. At other times they seem to possess secrets they’re unwilling to reveal.
A multifaceted artist, Sajedi has worked in film, as a graphic designer, a children’s book illustrator, and a painter of fine art. Her paintings have won her international attention and acclaim. They’re raw, inspired, enigmatic. Each portrait seems to say something about people and the human condition. And every painting will stick with you.
In an interview with Style No Chaser, she said,
“I work in a manner very similar to close-ups in the cinema where the
audience can learn about inner states and emotions of the character in that specific moment by getting closer to him/her. Generally speaking, I can’t claim to be an illustrator of the “inside”. Sometimes the inside is kept hidden by my subject’s silence, the only way to grasp it is through their gazes and the surrounding symbols; at other times, the inside is so highlighted that it strips them of all attributes of the human figure, transforming them to new creatures.”
Check out examples of her paintings below.