Babak Golkar is a Canadian artist, working and living in Vancouver, Canada. Born in Berkeley, US, 1977.
He spent most of his formative years in Tehran until 1996 when he moved to Canada. He obtained a Masters of Fine Arts from the University of British Columbia in 2006 and has exhibited in venues internationally since graduating. Selected solo exhibitions and presentations include All The Blind Men. Servais Family Collection, Brussels, Belgium (2019), The Exchange Project (La Collection Imaginaire), INCA, Seattle, U.S.A. (2016); Of Labour, Of Dirt, Sazmanab, Tehran, Iran (2014); Time To Let Go…, Vancouver Art Gallery: Offsite, Vancouver, Canada (2014); Dialectic of Failure, West Vancouver Museum, West Vancouver, Canada (2013); Parergon, Sharjah Contemporary Art Museum, Sharjah, U.A.E. (2012) and Mechanisms of Distortion, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, U.K. (2012).
Selected group exhibitions include Roadside Attractions - Made in Canada. Dunlop Art Gallery, Regina, Canadá (2018), HERE: Locating Contemporary Canadian Artists. Aga Khan Museum, Toronto, Canadá (2017), Crisis of History – Beyond History, Framer Framed, Amsterdam, Netherlands (2015); Common Grounds, Museum Villa Stuck, Munich, Germany (2015); L’avenir, 9th La Biennale de Montréal, Musee d’art Contemporain de Montréal, Canada (2014); and Hajj, le pèlerinage à La Mecque, Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France (2014).
Through a variety of forms - including drawing, print, ceramics, sculpture and installation - Babak Golkar’s subjects of research have emerged from his interest in spatial analysis in relation to contemporary human conditions. Golkar has generated a practice steeped in the juxtaposition of disparate traditions and by extension, new forms and meanings emerge from re-contextualization.
A driving force behind recent projects has been a contention of perspective. Skewing the asserted certainty of perspective and questioning its formal grounds for reference, as well as subsequent ideological viewpoints, Golkar engages a critical inquiry into cultural and socio-economic systems. Exploring the physical position of the body in relationship to form, physical points of reference and spacial relationships, Golkar subsequently echoes social, cultural, political states of mind in his work.
2006 Masters of Fine Arts, University of British Columbia.
2003 Bachelors of Fine Arts, Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design.
Solo shows (selected)
2019 The Elephant (an Intermission). Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
2019 All The Blind Men. Servais Family Collection. Brussels, Belgium. (Curated by Kimberley Phillips).
2016 La Collection Imaginaire. Institute for New Connotative Action. Seattle, USA. (Curated by Aeron Bergman and Alejandra Salinas).
2016 A fair's day wage for a fair's day work. Edel Assanti. London, UK.
2016 In no particular hurry. Sabrina Amrani Galery. Madrid, Spain.
2016 The Exchange Project (La Collection Imaginaire). INCA (Institute for New Connotative Action), Seattle, U.S.A. Curators: Aeron Bergman and Alejandra Salinas.
2014 L’avenir. 9th La Biennale de Montreal. Musee d’art Contemporain de Montreal. Canada. (Curated by Sylvie Fortin).
2014 Of Labour, Of Dirt. Sazmanab. Tehran, Iran. (Curated by Elham Puriyamehr).
2014 The Return Project. Third Line Gallery. Dubai, UAE.
2014 Time To Let Go…. Vancouver Art Gallery: Offsite. Vancouver, Canada. (Curated by Diana Freundl).
2013 Dialectic of Failure. West Vancouver Museum. West Vancouver, Canada. (Curated by Darrin Morrison).
2013 Ground for Standing and Understanding. VOLTA NY Featured Project. New York City, USA. (Curated by Michael Kaufmann).
2012 Parergon. Sharjah Contemporary Art Museum. Sharjah, UAE (Curated by Moza Ali Al Shamsi).
2012 Ground for Standing and Understanding. Charles H. Scott Gallery. Vancouver, Canada. Curated by Greg Bellerby).
2012 Mechanisms of Distortion (Commissioned installation). Victoria and Albert Museum. London, UK. (Curated by Salma Tuqan).
2012 Spatial Transformation. Hilger Contemporary. Vienna, Austria. (Curated by Michael Kaufmann).
2011 Parergon. Third Line Gallery. Dubai, UAE. (Curated by Sunny Rahbar).
2011 Parergon. C.S.A. Space. Vancouver, Canada. (Curated by Steven Tong).
2011 Black Cube: Moving Toward the Abstract Light. Sanatorium. Istanbul, Turkey. (Curated by Güher Gurmen).
2007 Then, Now and Then. Republic Gallery. Vancouver, Canada. (Curated by Pantea Haghighi).
2005 Dear Joseph: Happy 84th Birthday. Lobby Gallery. Vancouver, Canada, (Curated by Wes Cameron and Matt Robertson).
2003 The philosophy and science of mutation. Centre A Gallery. Vancouver, Canada, (Curated by Sadira Rodrigous).
2003 Throne. XENO gallery. Vancouver, Canada, (Curated by Mo Salemi).
Group shows (selected)
2019 Bienalsur 2019–International Contemporary Art Biennial of South America. Buenos Aires, Argentina. (Curated by Diana Wechsler).
2018 Dérapages & Post-Bruises Imaginaries. The Loft, Brussels, Belgium. (Curated by Dragos Olea).
2018. Roadside Attractions - Made in Canada. (Curated by Jennifer Matotek) Dunlop Art Gallery and exhibited in Regina.
2018 Long, Winding Journeys. Katonah Museum of Art. NY, USA (Curated by Elizabeth Rooklidge).
2017 Regarding George Ohr: Contemporary Ceramics in the Spirit of the Mad Potter. Boca Raton Museum of Art. Boca Raton, FL, USA (Curated by Garth Clark).
2017 N. Vancouver, The Polygon Gallery. Vancouver, Canada (Curated by Reid Shier).
2017 HERE: Locating Contemporary Canadian Artists. Aga Khan Museum. Toronto, Canada.
2016 Metatextile: Tuptured Narratives, Exchanged Values. Edel Assanti. London, UK.
2016 La Collection Imaginaire. Institute for New Connotative Action (INCA). Seattle, USA.
2016 Mass Individualism, Ab/Anbar, Tehran, Iran. Curator: Azadeh Zaferani.
2015 Crisis of History – Beyond History. Framer Framed. Amsterdam, Netherlands. (Curated by Elham Puriyamehr).
2015 Biennale di Venezia – 56th International Art Exhibilion – La Biennale di Venezia Settore Arte. Venice, Italy.
2015 Residue: The Persistence of the Real. Vancouver Art Gallery. Vancouver, Canada.
2015 Common Grounds. Museum Villa Stvck. Munich, Germany. (Curated by Verena Hein).
2015 Heaven and Hell. Fondation Boghossian - Villa Empain. Bruxelles, Belgium. (Curated by Diane Hennebert and Christophe Dosogne).
2014 L'avenir: La Biennale de Montréal (9th edition). Musée d’art Contemporain de Montréal. (Directed by Sylvie Fortin, Curated by Peggy Gale and Gregory Burke), (October-February 2015).
2014 La Route Bleue. National Museum Adrien Dubouché. Limoges, France. (Curated by Etienne Blondeau and Céline Paul).
2014 Music Palace. Fondation Boghossian - Villa Empain. Bruxelles, Belgium. (Curated by Diana Wiegersma), (September-January).
2014 Hajj, le pèlerinage à La Mecque. Institut du Monde Arabe. Paris, France. (Curated by Omar Saghi), (April-August).
2014 The Language of Human Consciousness. Athr Gallery. Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. (Curated by Mohammad Hafiz), (July-Oct).
2013 La Route Bleue. Fondation Boghossian - Villa Empain. Bruxelles, Belgium. (Curated by Diane Hennebert).
2013 Biennale Online. (Directed by Jan Hoet, Curated by Iara Boubnova).
2012 NEVER UNDERESTIMATE A MONOCHROME. University of Iowa Museum of Art. Iowa City, USA, (Curated by Mariángeles Soto-Díaz).
2012 #COMETOGETHER. EOA Project. London, U.K. (Curated by Stephen Stapleton).
2012 Contemporary Iranian Art. New Albion Gallery. Sydney, Australia. (Curated by Doug Hall).
2012 COME INVEST IN US. YOU’LL STRIKE GOLD. BrotKunsthalle. Vienna, Austria. (Curated by Diana Wiegersma).
2012 Jameel Prize Exhibition. Casa Arabe. Madrid, Spain.
2011 The Bravery of Being Out of Range. Athr Gallery. Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. (Curated by Aya Haidar).
2011 Roaming Images: Crossroads of Greek and Arab Culture Through the Eyes of Contemporary Artists. Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art. Greece. (Curated by Iara Boubnova).
2011 Jameel Prize Exhibitions. Institut du Monde Arabe. Paris, France.
2011 Jameel Prize Exhibitions. Victoria and Albert Museum. London, UK. (Curated by Salma Tuqan).
2011 Expositions. Blanket Gallery. Vancouver, Canada. (Curated by Natalia Tkachev).
2011 Tension. Hezy Cohen Gallery. Tel Aviv, Israel. (Curated by Yael Katz Ben Shalom).
2011 Art Dubai. The Third Line Gallery. Dubai.
2011 Art Beat. Istanbul Art Fair. Istanbul, Turkey. The Third Line Gallery.
2011 Istanbul Contemporary. Istanbul, Turkey. Hilger Contemporary.
2010 Time After Time. Southern Exposure. Los Angeles, USA. (Curated by Valerie Imus and Taraneh Hemami).
2010 The Promise of Loss. A Contemporary Index of Iran. Arario Gallery. New York City, USA. (Curated by Shaheen Merali).
2010 Frieze Art Fair. The Third Line Gallery. London, UK.
2010 Artissima. The Third Line Gallery. Turin, Italy.
2009 The Promise of Loss. A Contemporary Index of Iran. Galerie Hilger BrotKunsthalle. Vienna, Austria. (Curated by Shaheen Merali).
2009 ArtBasel-Miami. Hilger Contemporary. Miami, USA.
2009 Infinite Egress. Surrey Art Gallery. Surrey, Canada. (Curated by Jordan Strom).
2009 Nuit Blanche. Toronto, Canada. (Curated by Makiko Hara) (Public).
2009 Folter in der Kultur – Kultur der Folter. Artneuland Project. Berlin, Germany. (Curated by Yael Katz Ben Shalom).
2008 My Favorite Pastime, WL-Project. Hong Kong. (Curated by Kathrin Becker in collaboration with Silvia Anna Barirlà and Hanna Jacobi).
2008 Prequel. Gallery Atsui. Vancouver, Canada. (Curated by Wesley Cameron and Matt Robertson: Until We Have A Helicopter).
2008 Moodyville. Presentation House Gallery,.North Vancouver, Canada. (Curated by Helga Pakassar).
2008 Orientalism and Ephemera. Centre A Gallery. Vancouver, Canada. / Kenderdine Art Gallery, Uiversity of Saskatchewan, SK. (Curated by Jamelie Hassan).
2008 Interior of Design. Republic Gallery. Vancouver, Canada. (Curated by Jordan Strom).
2019 viennacontemporary. Sabrina Amrani. Vienna, Austria.
2019 ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
2018 Artissima. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Torino, Italy.
2018 ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
2017 Art Brussels. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Brussls, Belgium.
2016 Artissima. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Torino, Italy. (solo show)
2016 ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
Davidoff International Art Residency. La Romana. Dominican Republic.
2013 Friendship of Nations. Slavs and Tatars. Presentations House Gallery. North Vancouver, Canada.
2012 Even the Stars Seem To Be Changing Their Position. Lyndl Hall and Erdem Taşdelen. Sanatorium Project. Istanbul, Turkey.
2006 The Wrong Gallery Edition #125. Lobby Gallery, Vancouver, Canada. (Co-Curated with Wes Cameron and Matt Robertson) Artists included: Instant Coffee, Hadley and Mawell, Henry Tsang, David MacWilliam, Mark DeLong, David Young, Étienne Zack.
2003 A-MEN. Concourse Gallery, ECIAD. Vancouver, Canada (Co-Curated with Sergio Toporek).
2015 Vali, Murtaza, “Babak Golkar: The Return Project,” Art Forum, January 2015 pg. 235.
2014 Dr. Daneshvari, Abbas. Amazingly Original: Contemporary Iranian Art at Crossroads. Mazda Publication. 2014.
2014 Turner, Michael. How It Is Made and Waht It Is Made Of: Babak Golkar’s Scream Pots. (Catalogue Essay for Of Labour, Of Dirt).
2014 Dr. Sojoodi, Farzan. Perfection in imperfection: Dichotomies Deconstructed in Golkar’s Time to Let Go… (Catalogue Essay for Of Labour, Of Dirt).
2014 Pouriyamehr, Elham. Of Labour, Of Dirt. (Catalogue Essay for Of Labour, Of Dirt).
2014 Kalsi, Jyoti. Put under a spell by the market. Gulf News. Oct. 30.
2014 Saghafi, Mohsen. Tandis Magazine (Farsi). Oct. 30.
2014 Bahman Siahmard, Fatemeh. Honar Online (Farsi). Oct. 20.
2014 Seaman, Anna. The Return Project, The National, U.A.E., October 2014.
2014 Griffin, Kevin C. Time to Let . . . Go with Babak Golkar’s terracotta vessels, Vancouver Sun, May 8.
2013 Laurence, Robin. Babak Golkar's Dialectic of Failure reconsiders the nature of craft. Nov. 26.
2013 Verster, Gina. A Mud-slinging Screamfest. Nov. 2.
2012 James, Gareth. Grounds for Standing and Understanding, Art Forum, May 2012 pg. 318.
2012 Vali, Murtaza. Babak Golkar: Funny Frames, Harpers Bazaar Art, January 2012 pgs. 70-74.
2012 Laurence, Robin. Persian carpets rise in 3-D, Georgia Straight, 25 Jan 2012.
2012 Harris, Michael. Grounds for Standing and Understanding, Galleries West, 4 March 2012.
2012 Starnes, Jason. Negotiating Symbolic Space, Usurping the Big Other, catalogue essay.
2012 Boubnova, Iara. Grounds for Standing and Understanding, catalogue essay.
2011 Taşdelen, Erdem. The Logic of Parerga, catalogue essay.
2011 Lord, Christopher. Babak Golkar explores shifting meanings through picture frames, The National, U.A.E. 13 November 2011.
2011 Lord, Christopher. Jameel Prize 2011 shortlist develops art from craftwork, The National, U.A.E. 14 July 2011.
2011 Jameel Prize: Art Contemporian D’inspiration Islamique, Art Absolument: Numéro Spécial.
2011 Ibrahim, Dina. Architectural Psychology, ArteEast. http://www.arteeast.org/pages/artists/Golkar/?section=writing (September 2011).
2011 Kiger, Rumeysa. Golkar’s installation takes visitors back to their childhood, Today’s Zaman, Istanbul. 12 June 2011.
2011 Utkan, Hatice. ‘Black Cube’ moves, freedom vanishes, Hurriyet. Istanbul, 2 June 2011.
2011 Güleşçi, Pırıl. Siyah küpün içinde ne var? (What’s Inside the Black Cube?), Haber Turk, Istanbul. 18 June 2011.
2010 Lee. Sasha M. Daily Serving http://dailyserving.com/2010/08/interview-with-babak-golkar/ (August 2010).
2010 Nateghi, Behnam. Voice of America interview. January 2010.
2009 Hurtig, Annette. An Extended Dérive in a Terrain Passional, The Capilano Review, pgs. 120-127, Spring 2009 issue.
2005 Witt Ryan. Portrait of an artist, Georgia Straight. 29 September 2005.
2005 Hampton, Maria. Metro Newspaper Vancouver.
2005 Burnham, Clint. Horses for Courses. Vancouver Sun.
2005 Harris, Elayne. Horses For Courses: We Are Sorry. Catalogue essay.
2017 Sobey Awards- Long list. Ottawa, Canada.
2016 Davidoff International Art Residency. La Romana, Dominican Republic.
2011 Nominated and shortlisted for The Victoria and Albert Museum’s Jameel Prize. London, U.K.
2011 Nominated and shortlisted for Magic of Persia Contemporary Art Prize. London, U.K. Co-presented by The Royal College of Art, Saatchi Gallery and Christie’s Auction house.
2010 Canada Council for the Arts Production Grant. Ottawa, Canada.
2010 British Columbia Arts Council Production Grant. Victoria, Canada.
2009 British Columbia Arts Council Production Grant. Victoria, Canada.
2006 VADA Award. Vancouver, B.C.
2004 B.C. Binning Drawing Scholarship. Vancouver, Canada.
2003 Helen Pitt Award. Vancouver, Canada.
Vancouver Art Gallery (Canada)
The Royal Collection (Sheikh Zayed) (UAE)