Persian Gardens

"Persian Gardens"
Mixed Media on MDF Canvas Board
2012

The Persian Garden is a symbol of heaven, which has been carved in the soul, and engrained in the memory of Iranians for centuries. Iranians have long struggled against the harsh natural environment of the centre of the country Iran and the outcome of this battle was amazing gardens, whose tradition and style has travelled as far as Andalusia…

Iranians have maintained a poetic desire to have an encounter with nature and even now, in the modern era where no more magnificent gardens are being built, they still want to keep this tradition alive and whenever they want to take a photo to capture a moment, they prefer to take it outside, by a tree, in a small garden or even a backyard.

I wanted to show this close relationship between the Persian Garden heritage with that of the habit of Iranians to take photographs of themselves outside in the natural environment.

I used some old photographs of my family. They were all taken outdoors. Beside each photograph is a plan or elevation of a famous Persian garden or a plan or elevation of the place where the photo was taken and where, in my childhood, I spent a lot of time playing.

Parisa Aminolahi






















Mixed Media on MDF Canvas Board
2012
50 x 60 cm
Plan and Elevation: Hasht Behesht (Eight Paradises) Garden, a Safavid era palace and garden, Isfahan, Iran. The annotations: a narrative about Hasht Behesht from Engelbert Kaempfer's travelogue to Isfahan. Painter's notes on the image

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Mixed Media on MDF Canvas Board
2012
50 x 60 cm
Elevation: Narenjestan-e-Qavam, a traditional and historical house and garden in 
Shiraz, Iran. Plan: Painter’s paternal grandparents' house. The annotation: "…On the eastern side there is a regal reception hall, with corridors on either side, and two five-piece royal sashes with two iwans on either side. The entire building is decorated with small and large mirrors, and there are colourful paintings on the walls and ceiling. On each side of the southern and northern façade are 21 vault-frames. In the garden, there is a large pond full of clear, limpid water, and the garden itself, with orange trees and heavenly fragrant flowers, has an air exhilarating to the soul, and a joyful atmosphere. In its streets there are lamps, like sparkling stars." Forsat al-Dawla Shirazi, Athar-e 'Ajam (Monuments of Iran), 1895
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Mixed Media on MDF Canvas Board 
2012
50 x 60 cm 
Plan: Painter's maternal grandparents' house, Tehran. The annotations: About the Farah Abad Garden, a historical Safavid garden and palace located near Hezar Jarib Gardens, Isfahan, Iran. (Nothing remains of it anymore.) "…Des canaux revêtus de marbre blanc amenaient des eaux courantes dans un bassin de porphyre placé au centre de l'édifice, ou la distribuaient aux merveilleux jardins dont les voyageurs du dix-septième siècle nous ont laissé une si enthousiaste description...Tous les murs et toutes les voûtes sont bâtis en briques séchées au soleil…il est aisé de le constater, n'avaient pas de fermeture et devaient être abritées des rayons du soleil par de grandes tentes placées au devant des ouvertures…il ne put contenir ses larmes…Aujourd'hui tous les aqueducs sont détruits, les marbres précieux ont disparu, les voûtes de terre se sont effondrées et couvrent de leurs débris poudreux l'emplacement des jardins, où ne verdissent plus les parterres de fleurs elles platanes ombreux… " Jane Dieulafoy, La Perse, la Chaldee et la Susiane, 1887. A note about the garden from Rustam al-tavarikh and an extract from a poem by Hafiz.

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Mixed Media on MDF Canvas Board
2012  
50 x 60 cm
Plan and Elevation: Shazdeh Garden (Prince’s Garden): a historical Persian garden located near Mahan in Kerman, Iran. The annotations: “…TheAugust sun had poured colors of the rainbow into the bubbles of the waterjets…” Ella Sykes, Persia and Its People, 1910. An extract from a poem about the garden by Bastani Parizi, the Father.
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Mixed Media on MDF Canvas Board
2012 
50 x 70 cm
Plan: Painter's mother's childhood house, Esfahan. The annotation: a note by painter about the image.


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Mixed Media on MDF Canvas Board
2012  
50 x 70 cm
Plan: Painter's aunt's house, Tehran. The annotation: from Baburnama; a note about a garden.