Art as a life style, Minimalism an art movement evolved into my way of life

Art as a life style, Minimalism an art movement evolved into my way of lifeArt as a life style, Minimalism an art movement evolved into my way of life

Behdad Najafi Asadollahi, Untitled, 2022, 120 by 100 cm, Acrylic on Canvas

Early in my childhood art as my main hobby took an important role in my life, long story short and setting the details aside, now a days it’s my life style way beyond a job or business, better described as my life mission. Almost all my time and energy including my social and even my daily routines are planned with respect to art as the main priority.

 As a multidisciplinary artist encompassing painting and contemporary art I move among different majors and genres in my line of work. Professionally I am mainly engaged in painting which is followed by installation art and photography.

Based on years of working hard with love and passion I have reached a distinctive and authentic way of painting which consists my well recognized personal style in our art market today. In addition to forms, warm happy colors and the final composition, technically my artworks are well known for the rich textures created purely by countless layers of different colors.

I don’t want to label my artworks but to provide a better picture of my progress and looking at the art styles academically, I can say that initially I started painting with abstract expressionism style which is followed by minimalism (a subgenre of abstract art in my opinion). Working under the impression of these two styles and sometimes looking at them as my frameworks, gives me a balance in my artistic lifestyle.

Behdad Najafi Asadollahi, Untitled, 2023, 80 by 140 cm, Acrylic on Canvas

I can move from absolute freedom and spontaneity of abstract painting to planned logical patterns of forms and colors which exist in most of my minimal artworks. Usually these two keep their distance but sometimes the outcome of mixing them is remarkable.

In my opinion Abstract expressionism artwork is recognized by 4 main characteristics. It is boundless, distinctive, spiritual and spontaneous.

There is no limit in forms and colors and the way they come together to reach the final composition. However this is not in contradiction with bringing the principles of visual arts into consideration when creating an abstract artwork.

Abstract art is the practical outcome of communicating a specific and unique state of intellect and what lies in the artist’s subconscious with the outer world through the relevant media. This unicity is the reason why we can call it distinctive and personal equal to the expression “like no other”.

Being free from usual objects and subjects in the outside world, it is not about tangible reality and since it does not speak for the material world we can assume it as emotional and spiritual. It is an expression of what exist in artist’s mind, seen vividly and felt with every fiber of his soul but unable to be found in the outer world to represent.

Spontaneity is the fourth major character of abstract art. This genre presents the freedom of colors, shapes and ideas in which the pictorial aspect is replaced by forms. Although most of the abstract artists including me apply the rules and elements of visual arts in their artworks but they usually try not to imprison themselves in academic constraints.

Living an artistic life, I don’t know how and when I entered the world of minimalism but I can describe it as a turning point which initially influenced my art style and eventually my lifestyle.

Minimal painting is an authentic and perfect definition of abstraction resting on absolute simplicity. The visual terminology is deeply scaled down and moves toward clarity and integrity as much as possible to serve one of the main purposes of minimal art which is communicating with the audience directly with no emotion and expression. It passes on its direct message to the viewer in the absence of any illusion or complicated formulation. In other word what you see is what you get, there is nothing to be interpreted nor any hidden meaning to be explored.

Most of the minimal artworks enjoy geometrical motifs in which case the forms are remarkably subtle, balanced and controlled. Serialism and calculated composition techniques are well prevailed in creation of minimal paintings and artworks.

Behdad Najafi Asadollahi

Most often noticeable by relatively large monochrome looking surfaces and in many work of arts the repetition of visual elements, minimalism is trying to place the right elements in the right locations and orders.

General concept of minimal art includes the senses of integrity, perfection and decisiveness. Personally it gives me the feeling of power and prosperity which are widely experienced by the people who have   chosen minimalism as their life style.

Being additionally defined as the extreme simplified form of abstract genre, the highly purified form of aesthetic beauty of art is well presented by minimal artworks.

Like other forms of art, minimalism owns its unique reality which is not imitation of anything else. Here the forms and colors are direct and do not pretend to be something else. Unconditional reality which is the essence of minimalism shows the truth and harmony in a very clear and obvious visual way.

Taking a look at my minimal artworks I can say that in addition to the general characteristics of its kind, usually they are created based on mathematical logics and calculations. I also use engineering tools and methods and usually you can find different kinds of rulers, set squares, protractors and …beside my painting pallet knives and media.


A word by Behdad Najafi Asadollahi

Artist and Manager of Ragadid Art Gallery