Pouran Jinchi, Dawn 1, 2009, Waxed charcoal and pencil on Chartham paper, 96.5 x 63.5 cm.
Pouran Jinchi, Night 3, 2009, Waxed charcoal and pencil on Yatsuo paper, 94 x 63.5 cm.
The Third Line
Al Quoz 3
+9714 341 1367
New Works by Pouran Jinchi
January 21-February 25, 2010
Trained as a calligrapher in Mashad, Iran, Jinchi’s work typically focuses on the incorporation of the traditional aspects of her culture and the beauty of calligraphy to pursue her own aesthetic investigations of her faith. This series of drawings pursues a specific artistic question: to imagine a form for prayer. The drawings are maps of faith, propelled by questions on the place of religious ritual in a secular age. Like the patterns and habits of everyday life, their circular and rhythmic motifs are the result of forms repeated over time.
Jinchi incorporates delicately crafted drawings of patterned textures and traditional calligraphy with Islamic geometric design to form a series of new works detailing the implications of prayer and ritual.
The drawings are in fact rubbings, made by scratching charcoal on thin paper over prayer stones (mohr) in order to reproduce an imprint of the textured surface. The forms are then outlined with pencil or text to emphasize their detail. The repetitions of these forms in turn create new designs; they recreate the surface of the mohr, or Muslim prayer tablet made of baked clay, on the spot where the forehead meets the ground during daily prayers. Translated literally from ‘stamp’, a mohr may be decorated on one side with the word Allah, names of holy figures or other Arabic phrases, simple geometric or arabesque patterns and come in a vast variety of ornate detail.
This series is made up of a selection of drawings comprised of geometric shapes found in Islamic art, usually circles and rectangles, structured in such a way that the same shape is used over and over again but in various sizes and angles to create a larger and more detailed work. Jinchi uses the roughness of waxy charcoal against white and black paper to create contrasted patterns with a variety of prayer stones. The separate designs and/or calligraphic text on each stone contribute to the detailed final image. The replicating motifs add separate layers to existing shapes resulting in a work of meditative calmness. Much like the act of prayer.
Even though an array of styles and themes has been explored in Jinchi’s repertoire, she retains her calligraphy background with abstract expressionism to convey these ideas. Her work always stays true to a consciousness which acknowledges both past and present artistic production and social thought.
Pouran Jinchi was born in 1959 Mashad, Iran and currently lives and works in New York. Jinchi obtained a degree in Engineering at George Washington University, Washington D.C. in 1982 and then took up painting at the University of California, Los Angeles (1989), followed with studio painting at the Art Students League in New York (1993). Her work suggests a mixture of calligraphy and abstract expressionism. Ultimately, Jinchi succeeds in combining the achievements of her Persian heritage while simultaneously working through discussions of contemporary aesthetics.
Jinchi has exhibited extensively and has had over ten solo exhibitions in New York alone. Her work has been exhibited internationally in shows in Japan, Germany, Qatar and the UAE and included in public collections including the Federal Reserve Bank, New York, The Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C and the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn.