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Arab Times page 6 Kuwait May 16, 1994

Iranian artist opens exhibition in Kuwait

By Fiona MacDonald, Arab Times

KUWAIT CITY, May 16, 1994: An art exhibition was opened Sunday, displaying the unique work of Iranian artist Reza Doust. Held under the patronage of the Iranian ambassador to Kuwait, the exhibition has been significantly divided into two main sections: Iranian portraits and international works. Speaking exclusively to the Arab times, Doust explains that he has been painting since the age of nine. After earning a diploma from the Fine Arts school of Isfahan, he went on to study Art at the Tehran University, a match against his father’s wishes. It was at the university that he broke away from only painting Iranian arts and culture hence adopting a style including various kinds of other arts and cultures. Doust has been inspired by different artists throughout his developing career, ‘particularly Vincent Van Gogh who inspired me at an early stage in my painting’ he said. But Doust explained how he does not want to follow in any one else’s foot steps. ‘I only want to take certain points from them, ultimately creating my own style,’ he said. He has clearly succeeded in doing this, his work being the result of a multi-talented, highly versatile painter and artist. As it is clear in all of Doust’s portraits, he captures the essence of life in the particular character he is painting. ‘When I paint people,’ he said, ‘I don not just want to paint them exactly as I see them but rather capture their state of mind and the nature of their lives,’ he said. Using the beauty of colors, Doust indeed captures the sadness or joy, the prosperity or rustic nature of the people he paints. For example, one of his portraits on display is that of a peacefully seated Indian woman in a yellow embroidered dress. ‘In this picture,’ Doust said. ‘I wanted to show the contrast of this woman living in her own world against the real world she is living in.’ The success of such aims are left to the interpretation of those who study his portrait but it seems clear that Doust has gone away beyond capturing the superficiality of this woman’s character. In all his portraits, he depicts the culture and behaviors or his characters, ‘something I always aim to do,’ he added. Everything Doust paints is a product of his own mind and creativity. As already mentioned, the exhibition is comprised of three parts of his work. ‘There is only a difference too, between my Iranian paintings and those which are more international,’ Doust explained. Indeed, the Iranian paintings are so intricately detailed down to every leaf on every tree, for example, being beautifully painted. But the other more international paintings do not need so much intensive detail’ he said. ‘The are what you might call touch painting.’ In fact in this section, the colors are more important whereas with the Iranian paintings, the important aspect of is capturing Iranian culture and history in its entirety. ‘They are much more closely detailed,’ he added. Similarly, in his Kuwaiti paintings, Doust brilliantly portrays the pureness of old Kuwait.