In Khayyam Fountain, Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian gathered together various aspects of her visual alphabet, inspired by Sufi mysticism. The geometrical patterns are piled up as multilayer volumes to form a glass fountain. The three-, four- and even eight- or nine-sided shapes are alternately twisted and cut out into a hollow sculptural installation. Each element has its significance : as the triangle can, for example, represent the human being. With four points on the circumference of a circle, you can draw a square, the angles of which point in the four cardinal directions; the sides of a pentagon can stand for the five senses and the angles of a hexagon symbolize virtues. Inspired by mirror mosaics and stained glass in ancient palaces and temples in Iran, Farmanfarmaian used light and glass to create a fantastical play of refractions, with an evocation of water as a symbol of clarity and life.
Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian
Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian (1924 – 2019, Qazvin, IR) is described as 'one of Iran’s most inspiring and innovative artists'. Although she has lived longer in New York than in her homeland, her work is deeply rooted in Iranian culture, architecture and traditions, both formal and spiritual.