Aga Khan Museum presents Abbas Kiarostami: Doors Without Keys

Exhibition Dates: November 21, 2015 – March 27, 2016
Curatorial Team: Amirali Alibhai (curator), Peter Scarlet (curator), Abbas Kiarostami (Artist).

Walls and doors are both boundaries and barriers. The difference is that doors offer us hope of entry or of escape. Hope for connection, for finding another world, for freedom.

With this evocative premise, acclaimed Iranian filmmaker, poet, and photographer presents the world premiere of his remarkable installation piece, Doors Without Keys at the Aga Khan Museum.

AKM - Abbas Kiarostami - Doors Without KeysComprised of images he photographed over two decades in Iran, Italy, France, and Morocco, the weathered doors in these life-size photographs are all thresholds to abandoned buildings, and each is hasped and locked.

These portals have been witnesses to the many lives lived behind, through, and before them; they are confrontational in their scale, and are rich in the unspoken stories they tell. The multi-sensory installation, which includes sound, atmospheric lighting, poetry and short films, offers a multi-faceted view of this remarkable artists’ prolific contribution to world culture.

A series of feature films by Abbas Kiarostami, curated by Peter Scarlet and presented in partnership with the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), will be screened at the Aga Khan Museum in 2016.

Abbas Kiarostami is recognized internationally for his contributions not only to cinema, but also to photography, visual arts, and poetry. The Aga Khan Museum is proud to present Kiarostami’s work in its first exhibition of a solo artist and to launch Doors Without Keys on a planned international tour.

AKM - Abbas Kiarostami - Doors Without Keys - Abbas
Abbas Kiarostami – Doors Without Keys

About Abbas Kiarostami
Abbas Kiarostami was born in Tehran, Iran, in 1940. He graduated from university with a degree in Fine Arts before starting work as a painter and graphic designer. He worked for the Center for Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults, where he started a film section, beginning his career as a filmmaker at the age of 30.

One of the true masters of contemporary cinema, Kiarostami has won the admiration of audiences and critics worldwide and of directors as distinguished as Jean-Luc Godard, Nanni Moretti, Chris Marker, Akira Kurosawa, and Martin Scorsese, who has noted that “Kiarostami represents the highest level of artistry in the cinema.” His awards are numerous and include the prestigious Palme d’Or for Best Film for Taste of Cherry at the 50th Cannes International Film Festival, France, 1997 and the Akira Kurosawa Honorary Award of the 43rd San Francisco International Film Festival, USA, 2000.

Over the years, Kiarostami has established himself as a multi-disciplinary artist with gallery exhibitions of his photography and installation work, at the Victoria and Albert Museum (London, 2005) Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris, 2007), and Museum of Modern Art (New York, 2007). He is also recognized as a screenwriter, and poet, having published several collections of his poetry.

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