Moved by sensuality and the flesh, Shahbazi proposes a new series of paintings inspired by her discovery of German expressionism, dance and the Russian ballet. Reading again an old copy of Boris Kochno’s Ballet, as well as rediscovering the works of Paola Rego, Bonnard and Vuillard, have been a real shock for her eye. The title of the exhibition, “The Firebird”, is a reference to the eponymous ballet which originated in the Russian tale written by Igor Stravinsky and popularized in France by the choreographer Maurice Béjart.
For this new series, Shahbazi worked on the concepts of movement and how the body can translate emotions, Nastaran Shahbazi explores the moves of the anatomy when it meets the demands of choreographers. In a more introspective, melancholic and deeper consideration, the paintings reveal the painter’s state of mind, under the features of young dancers with fluid bodies, backstage, in the dressing rooms or on stage. In the continuity of her recent work on Parisian nightlife and the freedom offered by the Western lifestyle, which she has totally embraced, Shahbazi undertakes to exorcise what haunts her, the spectres that followed her from Iran to France, and the sad current events that remind her of them. Her works are, on the contrary, an ode to life, to carnal pleasures, to the freedom of bodies.