My Uncle Napoleon

Mohassess Cover

From Closed Circuit History (Mage Publishers, Washington, DC, 1989), a collection of drawings by the great Iranian artist Ardeshir Mohassess. The following is from the introduction by Ali Banuazizi, professor of social psychology and modern Iranian history at Boston College.

Ardeshir Mohassess is recognized internationally as Iran's leading caricaturist and graphic artist. Yet, as the powerful images on the following pages show, neither appellation fully describes the breadth, depth, intricacy, and complexity of his art and vision.

Born in Rasht, in northern Iran, on September 9, 1938, Mohassess grew up in an art-loving family. The main influence in his early life, he says, was his poetess mother, whose endless supply of funny stories, invented mostly on the spur-of-the-moment, helped enrich his imagination.

In the early 1960s, Mohassess's caricatures and other drawings began to be published in Iran. Since then, his works have appeared in both Iranian and Western newspapers and magazines. His drawings have been widely exhibited in Iran (until the 1979 revolution) and abroad by private galleries as well as several major museums.

In his drawings, be they detailed tableau or simple, primitive sketches, Mohassess quite literally dissects his characters with his pen and then peels away the conventional facade to expose the underlying reality of his world -- a world of injustice and anguish, of domination and subjection, of pettiness, gluttony, and arrogance, and of tyranny and cruelty.

The King Went
Pride and Youth
Long Live the Nation
Change of Power
Victory Anniversary Celebration
Final Confrontation
Metamorphosis (1)
Metamorphosis (2)
Metamorphosis (3)
Metamorphosis (4)
Metamorphosis (5)
Movement in Tranquillity (1)
Movement in Tranquility (2)

Copyright © Mage Publishers
None of the images above be reproduced or transmitted
in any manner whatsoever without the written permission
from Mage Publishers.

Related links

* THE IRANIAN Arts section
* Cover stories
* Who's who


World Cup videoIranian Online Directory Sehaty Foreign Exchange
Copyright © 1997 Abadan Publishing Co. All Rights Reserved. May not be duplicated or distributed in any form.