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 includeAll 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) andMechanisms of Distortion, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, U.K. (2012).
Selected group exhibitions includeRoadside 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); andHajj, le pèlerinage à La Mecque, Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, France (2014).
BABAK'S STATEMENT
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.
Education
2006
Masters of Fine Arts, University of British Columbia.
2003
Bachelors of Fine Arts, Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design.
Solo shows (selected)
2020
The Longer You Can Look Back, The Farther You Can Look Forward. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
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)
2022
Thingamajig. AB-ANBAR Gallery, Cromwell Place. London, UK.
2021
Long Story Short. Sabrina Amrani. Madrid, Spain.
2021
BUM BUM BA YE [Under Pressure].Sabrina Amrani. Madrid, Spain.
2021
Contemporary Ceramic Art from the Middle East.Victoria and Albert Museum. London, UK.
2020
Ver Versus Ver II. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
2020
Ver Versus Ver. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
2020
Crocodile Tear.Unit 17. Vancouver, Canada.
2019
Bienalsur –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).

Fairs
2022
Art Düsseldorf. Sabrina Amrani. Düsseldorf, Germany.
2022
ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani. Madrid, Spain.
2021
ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani. Madrid, Spain.
2020
ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani. Madrid, Spain.
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.
Residencies
Davidoff International Art Residency.La Romana. Dominican Republic.
Curatorial projects
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).
Bibliography
2015
Vali, Murtaza, “Babak Golkar: The Return Project,” Art Forum, January pg. 235.
2014
Dr. Daneshvari, Abbas. Amazingly Original: Contemporary Iranian Art at Crossroads. Mazda Publication. .
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
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 pg. 318.
2012
Vali, Murtaza. Babak Golkar: Funny Frames, Harpers Bazaar Art, January pgs. 70-74.
2012
Laurence, Robin. Persian carpets rise in 3-D, Georgia Straight, 25 Jan .
2012
Harris, Michael. Grounds for Standing and Understanding, Galleries West, 4 March .
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
Lord, Christopher. Jameel Prize shortlist develops art from craftwork, The National, U.A.E. 14 July .
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
Kiger, Rumeysa. Golkar’s installation takes visitors back to their childhood, Today’s Zaman, Istanbul. 12 June .
2011
Utkan, Hatice. ‘Black Cube’ moves, freedom vanishes, Hurriyet. Istanbul, 2 June .
2011
Güleşçi, Pırıl. Siyah küpün içinde ne var? (What’s Inside the Black Cube?), Haber Turk, Istanbul. 18 June .
2010
Lee. Sasha M. Daily Serving http://dailyserving.com//08/interview-with-babak-golkar/ (August ).
2010
Nateghi, Behnam. Voice of America interview. January .
2009
Hurtig, Annette. An Extended Dérive in a Terrain Passional, The Capilano Review, pgs. 120-127, Spring issue.
2005
Witt Ryan. Portrait of an artist, Georgia Straight. 29 September .
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.
Awards
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.
Public Collections
Dreizeichen Stiftung (Germany)
Vancouver Art Gallery (Canada)
Arter (Turkey)
The Royal Collection (Sheikh Zayed) (UAE)