by Chiara Ciurlia
The artist Mohsin Taasha Wahidi, is a native of Kabul and belonging to the Hazara ethnic group.
Trained in Pakistan, the roots of his art lie in the millenary culture of ancient Persia conveying his look to the contemporary.
“Birth of Red” are pictorial and performative cycles, begun in 2016 following the suicide attack in Deh Mazang, Kabul.
The vision of how this place was marked by this event and how all the senses were upset to see shreds of bodies and to perceive the strong and intense smell of blood, had a very strong impact on him. It is a profound wound that is reflected collectively in the intimacy of a people and that in order to heal itself has the need to be universally manifested.
The artist becomes the Narrator of collective stories, the voice of the “many”.
The language with which he narrates his “visual stories” is influenced by an archaic, traditional code, in which the geometric textures of carpets and the sublime decorative aesthetics of Koranic calligraphy frame the narrated stories, coagulated in human forms wrapped in red drapes. We are in front of a tenuous indication of humanity that has an echo of De Chirico of lifeless and immobile dummies, completely depersonalized by the “draper – censor” imposed by the Taliban regime. These forms are vivified only by the prevailing use, almost an obsessive presence, of bright Red that becomes personification, true and the only protagonist. The use of this color has a strong symbolic component: it is blood, death and, at the same time, it is love, passion, life.
In the artist’s imagination, nature and the native landscape also enter with force, and these human figures wrapped in large purple drapes are like fragile petals of poppies or tulips that cover the meadows towards Mazar El Sharif, nothing is enough to dissolve them and their intimate beauty.
With the involvement of the theater group Sorkh wa Safid, the artist gave life to his paintings, staging real environmental performances in the streets of the city and in largely rural areas. The pictorial works seem to have wanted to break the frame of the two-dimensional medium, acquiring plasticity in the name of a message aimed at involving more and more people.
The contrast between the snow-covered land and the orderly passage of these red figures has a strong symbolic and communicative charge. The immaculate earth oozes drops of blood like a deep gash to which it is necessary to put a definitive remedy. The artist is a poet of a tragic contemporaneity in which every cry, every suffering is a clear and definite element and for which it is necessary to create universal awareness and spirit of criticism for a better understanding of reality.
For a complete view of the artist, see the catalog curated by Marco Meneguzzo, Mohsen Taasha Wahidi: beyond the curtain, Quaderni Alphabet, Techa Gallery 2016