Artist: Almira Nikravesh
Media: Hydrocal and Board is MDF
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dr. Maxine Merlino Gallery
Website: No website
For this week’s artist conversation, I interviewed Almira Nikravesh. She is an undergraduate student at Cal State Long Beach and will be graduating with a BFA in sculpture. On her free time, she enjoys going to the gym to lift weights. Almira told me a little about her history and why she couldn’t walk on a rug when she was little. Her family owns an expensive silk carpet shop that is made to NOT walk on. She says, in Iran, you can’t walk on these carpets because the labor to make these type of carpets is really extensive. This is a memory of when she was little and couldn’t walk on the carpets because of how strict her culture was.
Almira’s artwork is the feet surrounding the sides of the walls and the carpet in the middle of the room. She put the same duplicate sculptures of her feet and used the area of the room where it usually wouldn’t be used. Amira used the C and C which is a computer numeral control that engraves in the points you tell it too. So, she used the C and C to engraved her feet multiple times and they all look exactly the same.The texture of the feet is soft and smooth, it’s detailed by each lining of the toes and toe nails. She also made a look a like carpet in the middle of the room that is made from wood and saw dust. She used the C and C to make it look like a 3D model. The carpet is very detailed with each design that she incorporated.
Almira was inspired to do this artwork because of the Islamic Mediterranean Eastern art that she sees. She’s also Mediterranean, which influences the objects and issues in her life to incorporate this in her artwork. Since she was little and couldn’t walk on carpets, she thought that she would make a duplicate of a carpet that was in her house into a 3D carpet made of wood. Her purpose was to let the audience know that the carpets should be used instead of not being walked on.
I thought Almira’s artwork was very creative and confusing at first. When I first walked in, I didn’t understand what was going on until she explained to me the history behind it. Most artists would do an artwork based off how they feel and what they want to experiment with, but Almira’s artwork was influenced by her family and the story behind it. I really liked the feet surrounding the walls, I thought she made it all by hand at first until she told me it was made by the computer. I think art should be embraced by culture more and the story behind it.