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Although he earned a degree in Agricultural Engineering from the Iranian University of Jundi Shapur, Sabzi found artistic concepts more compelling and began creating realistic works with historical and cultural themes.
His left Iran during the Khomeini regime and came to the United States via Germany. This exile provided him the opportunity to explore new artistic influences, and he began to work in abstract and figurative styles.
Sabzi's subjects are almost always women – beautiful, graceful, taciturn and melancholy. Women who reflect love, mystery and solitude. He considers them Madonnas, modern goddesses and martyred saints whose elongated forms suggest instability and internal conflict.
“Their anonymous faces make them religious icons and enable them to transcend and defy the demands of reality,” says Sabzi, “thus reflecting warmth, charm, and happiness.”
His Iranian heritage provides him with ancient images, sentimental Persian themes and memories of innocence. He further draws modernism from the Western influence of works by Klee, Cezanne, Matisse and Bonnard.
His debt to modernism, especially to Matisse, is irrefutable. Earthy hues of pale greens, yellows, purples and reds illuminate the settings and inspire the forms with unique inner vibrations. Though schematic, the treatment of the human face as luminous geometric planes is a profound statement of the artist's quest for spirituality.
Sabzi goes beyond Matisse and creates spatially-revolving, post-modern worlds. Images reflected in mirrors assume a life of their own. The effect is a powerful multiplicity of emotional representation. Here the fantastic is treated as ordinary and the rich fabrics of the paintings resonate intimacy.
Sabzi's passion for the spiritual is represented in the open spaces, symbolism and intricate patterns that make up the backgrounds of his compositions. Juxtaposing the complex feelings, body language and attitudes of his predominantly female figures against a backdrop of shapes and forms in space, Sabzi uses texture, lines and color to make artistic statements about love and beauty.
Roger Yost purchased the first of many original oils and limited edition giclees in the gallery while visiting the Sabzi studio in Thousand Oaks, California, in March 2007.