Elisium

November 13 – December 13, 2015

Baku Museum of Modern Art

Baku, Azerbaijan

Elysium of shades this soul of mine,

Shades silent, luminous, and wholly severed

From this tempestuous age, these restless times,

Their joys and griefs, their aims and their endeavors.

 

Speak, O my soul, Elysium of shades!

What bonds have you with life? Speak, phantoms summoned

From out a day whose very memory fades —

What have you with this heartless mob in common?

 

Fyodor Ivanovich Tyutchev (1832)

Aida's solo exhibition explores the theme of an imaginary botanical garden where the attendees can immerse themselves in its ethereal beauty.

 

One can forego tensions and find inspiration by just observing the flowers in bloom. The artist has attempted to emote her myriad feelings through the paintings displaying beautiful and exotic plants.

 

Mahmudova animates the surface of the canvas, drawing attention to both the process of painting and the material qualities of the paint itself. She plays with depth, perspective, and scale, creating large-scale scenes that capture the attention of the viewer. A structure of bold planes of color has been combined with layers of textured brushstrokes. The painted surface is further animated and enlivened with the addition of materials, such as polyurethane foam over which an impasto application of paint is applied to build volume. In the series of paintings, Mahmudova has explored the idea of impermanence. The works provide glimpses of Azerbaijan's natural surroundings, urban environment, and architecture–a backdrop that is undergoing constant and rapid change. A central component of Mahmudova's work is her exploration of memory, its links to identity, and how they both can be continually altered and recalled over time.

 

"The scenes in my paintings have a strong personal resonance, combining places within Baku with those recollected and imagined. Each view captures a moment of stillness against a backdrop that is constantly changing," she explained. This tension between fiction and reality in her paintings is recreated by merging abstract and figurative forms, creating images that are both inviting and disorientating.