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Maryam Hoseini, Secrets Between Her and Her Shadow (detail), 2019

The Iranian-born artist has been spending the summer dedicated to her work, an intense style of composition that draws upon mythology, art history and her own life to create richly layered explorations of life and sexuality in paint. It’s a theme readily apparent in work such as Women with Green Lies (2) from the 2018 show We Contain Multitudes, in which headless female forms interlock, seeming almost to tessellate, to disturbing effect. The work typifies Hoseini’s concentrated, layered style of expression, as seen in solo and two-person exhibitions that include After You, Green Art Gallery, Dubai, UAE (2020–21); Yes Sky, Rachel Uffner Gallery, NY, USA (2020); Body Armor, MoMA PS1, New York, USA (2018); and Of Strangers and Parrots, Rachel Uffner Gallery, NY, USA (2017). Hers is a robust and powerful oeuvre that always seems to be forcing its way into new directions and refuses to be satisfied with any semblance of the status quo.

Take her choice to work on board, as she continues to explore the idea of physicality in her work. “Painting is a super- physical practice in general,” says Hoseini. “There are a lot of bodily interactions, both in terms of my making process and what the viewer sees in my work.” In the past her physical confrontation with her materials has gone as far as involving the hammering of nails into the surface of the paintings. “It’s a really scary moment,” she admits, “because at any second the wood can break and then the painting is gone.”

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