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Mohammed Ehsai (Iranian, b. 1939)
each: signed and dated in Farsi (lower left)
acrylic on card, in four parts
each: 23¼ x 22 7/8in. (59 x 58.7cm.);
overall: 46½ x 46¼in. (118 x 117.4cm.)
Painted in 2001 (4)
Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner.

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Bibi Naz Zavich
Bibi Naz Zavich

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Lot Essay

In the present work, Mohammed Ehsai endlessly repeats the word 'Allah' (God) and gives it a monumental quality. Through repetition, the artist not only refers to the importance of its signifier, but also alludes to the ritual Sufi practice of the zikr, a spiritual incantation of sacred words that is widely practiced in Islamic worship. The letters, like forms, are subtly scattered through the surface of the work, as if in a circular movement of devotion reminiscent of the ceremonial walks around the Ka'aba in Mecca.
The letters in vibrant primary colours reveal the gestural brushstrokes of the artist, hence referring to Ehsai's approach to Modern art, yet put together, they embark the viewer onto a spiritual journey to the roots of tradition and sacred life.

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