Sarra Jahedi is an artist of many mediums: a poet, sculptor, filmmaker, comedian, musician, and most recently, a painter.
Jahedi’s paintings combine abstraction and portraiture, drawing on the work of Rothko and Pollock to bring the physical immediacy of conceptual modern art into the context of figurative representations. “Meticulousness is a falsity in art,” says Jahedi, who opts instead for almost stream-of-consciousness style painting. “The people [in my paintings] reveal themselves mostly to me,” Jahedi says.
Averse to the inaccessibility of gallery shows, Jahedi favors displaying her work in more mundane settings that allow her art to interact with the real world. Her newest show, “Welcome to the Family,” which takes place tomorrow, July 21, in Villa Park, fits with this recent move towards accessibility: it’s in a house, rather than a gallery.
The house itself is a home set for demolition borrowed from Jahedi’s architect father; though not her childhood home, it’s a location with personal family ties. In choosing a space that occupies the intersection of the formal and the familial, Jahedi both highlights her nontraditional art background (she studied biology rather than fine art) and creates a sense of intimacy between herself and her guests. Instead of the conservative gallery approach, which Jahedi refers to as the “tradition of the white wall,” she favors a method reminiscent of a parent proudly displaying her child’s masterpieces. Jahedi hangs her large paintings on the walls with push pins, completely covering the space and fully immersing guests into her world.
The atmosphere of “Welcome to the Family” is that of a workspace, an intimate view into Jahedi’s artistic process rather than one cleaned up for public consumption, which is what she wants from her art. In inviting guests into this home, Jahedi invites them to share a personal piece of herself. “I love the idea of the art show being like a family,” Jahedi says. “I’m welcoming people into my inner world”.
“Welcome to the Family.” Sat 7/21, noon-6 PM, 219 S. Monterey Ave., Villa Park, free.