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Afshin Pirhashemi (Iranian, b. 1974)

The Love Wine

Afshin Pirhashemi (Iranian, b. 1974)
The Love Wine
signed and dated 'Afshin 08' and in Farsi three times (lower right of each panel)
oil on canvas; triptych
each: 78¾ x 39½in.(200 x 100cm.);
overall: 78¾ X 118½in.(200 x 300cm.)
Painted in 2008 (3)
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Lot Essay

The title of work refers to a famous poem by legendary Persian Sufi and poet Rumi in which he encourages pious people to cleanse their heart from hatred and drink instead the wine of love.
"Open your heart like a tray
Vengeance wash away and pray
The wine of love, when down you lay
Your cup grace, your cup grace
You must become wholly a soul
To be worthy of the Divine Whole
If with the drunk you play your role
Drinking chase, drinking chase"
The dancing woman, saaghi, embodied in this triptych, is a metaphor that renders the point of view of the Persian mystic or Sufi, and its greatest exponent Rumi, which is widely reflected in Persian poetry; the mundane love stands for a spiritual love for God. Hence, love appears as a window of hope in this work and is symbolized by a woman offering love wine as a major source of salvation.
In his love poems, Rumi uses many images from the mundane world, such as the wine and the wine bearer, the pearl and the ocean, the sun and the moon, the night and day, and many more. However, he has always expressed spiritual wisdom of the highest level through this imagery.

Afshin Pirhashemi is the award winner at the 2nd International Beijing Biennial in 2005 and also the 6th Tehran Painting Biennial in 2004.

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