Faig Ahmed: SLOMA Presents the First West Coast Museum Exhibition


The San Luis Obispo Museum of Art will present an exciting solo exhibition of contemporary Azerbaijani artist Faig Ahmed starting February 12. The artwork exhibited will span Ahmed’s career, while focusing on works primarily made within the past five years: 2016-2021. The work in this exhibition is loaned from major collections from all over the world and is organized in collaboration with Nina Levent, Director of New York-based gallery Sapar Contemporary.

A multimedia artist working with textiles, painting, video, and installation, Faig Ahmed is best known for his conceptual works that deconstruct and rearrange fragments of traditional Azerbaijani rugs to create contemporary sculptural forms. His work reimagines ancient crafts and creates new visual languages by disassembling traditional works and stereotypes, bringing them into a global contemporary art context. Ahmed explores fresh new visual forms that challenge our perception of traditions and iconic cultural objects. His artworks engage the viewers through its unexpected marriage of traditional crafts with hyper-contemporary, digitally distorted images often in the form of pixilation, three-dimensional shapes and melting paint that alters the pattern on the rugs. The artist’s avenues of artistic inquiry are connected to patterns, language, calligraphy and how those are reflective of mystical practices, ancient scriptures, regional histories.

“I first discovered Faig Ahmed’s work in 2018 and immediately fell in love. Since that time, his global reputation has skyrocketed and his work is in major museum collections all over the world,” said SLOMA Chief Curator Emma Saperstein. “It’s really special for us to present this work to our community.”

Born in Sumqayit, Azerbaijan in 1982, Faig Ahmed graduated from the sculpture department of Azerbaijan State Academy of Fine Art in Baku in 2004. He represented Azerbaijan at the nation’s inaugural pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2007 and participated in the 2013 pavilion. Also in 2013, he was nominated for the third edition of the Jameel Prize organized by London’s Victoria and Albert Museum. He lives and works in Baku, Azerbaijan and is a Board Member of the YARAT Contemporary Art Space.

Ahmed’s works can be seen in public collections globally, including the Art Institute of Chicago; Seattle Art Museum; Los Angeles County Museum; Bargoin Museum, France; The National Gallery of Victoria, Australia; and The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Norway, among many other public and private collections.

A variety of in-depth programming with local school districts, guided docent tours, and a lecture program will accompany the exhibition.

“We are honored to be presenting the work of an internationally-recognized artist that has never been exhibited before in this region,” stated SLOMA Director, Leann Standish. “It’s a wonderful example of the momentum that SLOMA has developed, not only expanding our focus nationally but globally as well.”

Faig Ahmed Exhibition: February 12 – May 15, 2022
Artist and Donor Dinner: February 10
Member Preview: February 11

About San Luis Obispo Museum of Art
The San Luis Obispo Museum of Art (SLOMA) is the heart of the California Central Coast art community and a vital link to the cultural life of the region. It is a dedicated to providing and promoting diverse visual arts experiences for people of all ages and backgrounds through exhibitions, education, creation, and collaboration. Located at 1010 Broad Street, on the west end of Mission Plaza in San Luis Obispo, California, admission to this 501(c)(3) public benefit nonprofit arts organization is free to all. More information can be found at http://www.sloma.org.

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