Inaugurating ACAF Talking Peers: Yasi Alipor at Twelve Gates Arts

March 29, 2022 – April 23, 2022
Twelve Gates Arts

106 North 2nd St.
Philadelphia, PA

Towards Shifting Centers, 2021, folded paper and cyanotype, 11 x 9 inches. Image courtesy of the organizer.

Towards Shifting Centers, 2021, folded paper and cyanotype, 11 x 9 inches. Image courtesy of the organizer.

Asia Contemporary Art Forum (ACAF) inaugurates the first iteration of Talking Peers program in collaboration with Twelve Gates Arts in the form of a solo exhibition: The Pleasure of Futile Cycles–centering on works by artist, writer, and educator, Yasi Alipour, curated by the artist and curator Maryam Ghoreishi.

As the first point of connection between the two Iranian-born Brooklyn based art professionals–Alipour and Ghoreishi–The Pleasure of Futile Cycles serves as the premier of ACAF’s 2022 Talking Peers program envisioned by ACAF board directors Leeza AhmadyMegha Ralapati, and Christopher Ho, to prompt collaborations between Asia and diaspora artists, curators and educators. This initiative aims to activate, empower, and renew professional networks–building artistic connections and expansive peer-to-peer mentorship structures.

Opening Reception: Friday, April 1st, 5-8pm
Walkthrough: 7pm, Yasi Alipour, Maryam Ghoreishi, and Leeza Ahmady

Performative in-Person Workshop: Saturday, April 23rd, 3-5pm
Finding Silence, Echo, And Sounds in Traces: A Breath/Tactile (Folding)/Vocalizing with Yasi Alipour and Julia Santoli, a multimedia artist, musician, and composer. In this interactive workshop, audiences are encouraged to join Yasi and Julia. Through a collective experience of folding papers accompanied with vocals and soundart, an immersive environment will be created.

The Pleasure of Futile Cycles features recent and new tactile works by Yasi Alipour made on a variety of paper materials. At first glance the works may appear as though they are drawn, however each piece is formed purely through the artist’s act of folding and unfolding paper, in combination with the cyanotype process. On coated black papers, the image emerges from the folding traces of the dark surface. Through the cyanotype process, the image is developed with exposure to light, as asemi-unpredictable interaction between light and the light-sensitive surface, creating a spectrum of blue tones.

The ad infinitum performance of folding–which Alipour refers to as an infinite choreography on each sheet of paper, evokes rituals as repeated action, rooted in Yasi’s childhood. “I remember my mom or grandmother’s habit of breaking matches or scribbling on papers while talking on the phone. It was an unintentional way of transforming emotions and feelings into a tactile act,” conveys Alipour as she recalls folding paper since high school as a focus and endurance strategy during her various classes.

Integrating this habit and love for folding with her curiosity about math, numbers, and theories around paradoxes such as Zeno’s Paradoxes, Alipour explores the relationship between the paradoxes of binary logics and the infinite possibilities of dividing a 2D surface into different fractions: 1/2, 1/3, 1/5 and so on. Alipour believes that all paradoxes tell specific stories, which she embodies in her works by transforming them into tactile experiences through the fulfilling ritual of folding and counting.