WHO WE ARE
We are Soheil Rostami and Sanaz Raffii. We became friends in 2006. We started working in the art field with each other in 2010, moving from one place to other, we had different studios between 2010 till 2012. Soheil was also working as artist assistants for different contemporary visual artists from 2008 till 2012. After 6 years of being friends and colleagues we decided to stay in one place and build our home and studio in 2012. We bought a bare land in a village 20 km away from Tehran, and started to build our home and studio. A visual art workshop, a music studio, garden with different variety of fruit and non-fruit trees. We also brought different farm animals and breed them. We call here P A A Y G A A H. We were constructing ourselves, it was closetful and time consuming and took us 4 years. In 2014 we could finally work on our artistic projects, little by little other young artists who sought for a studio to create their artistic work, focus and produce their art projects came to P A A Y G A A H. In 2015 we registered G A A H A R T officially in Iran. In addition to producing and working on different art projects at
P A A Y G A A H, we also performed events and art exhibitions in here.
P A A Y G A A H is an independent artist-run space. In 2016 we held our first group exhibition and it was the first exhibition at P A A Y G A A H. Our group exhibition title was “Momentum Nov 4th 2016”. You can go to “Memory” link and see the details about all the events and exhibitions we produced, whether at P A A Y G A A H or other locations.
We felt the need for another art space in Tehran. A location to communicate and gather with young artists and collaborators for planning, talking, improving our relationships with the art community. As P A A Y G A A H is far away from Tehran, the function is focused more on producing and working. So in 2019, we opened a new art space in Tehran. We called it “Gaah Space in Tehran”. We held an opening titled “Momentum 7 March 2019”. The introduction event accompanying a group exhibition.
Since 2012 till today we have been producing art events and exhibitions, music performances, helping other young artists to produce their artistic projects.
Our approach is being pragmatist, based on relationship between artists and group works. In order to change, we believe in being active. The activism in the path of being independent. Knowledge, research, work in what we love is what we seek and act.
- The Beginning of a long journey - The structure of our workshop is on the ground - waiting to stand
- The first tree we planted
- the structure on its feet
- The structure is getting completed
- The structure is getting completed
- The structure joints
- A room for making music
- patience is vital to make your own home
- Temporary ceiling made of plastic - We continued construction under this ceiling
- Final roof made of metal - White is beautiful
- These beautiful flowers are called "Lady Banks' rose" but word by word translation of their name in Persian is "Yellow waterfall" - Their name suit them indeed - In spring you will be amazed by their beauty.
- We made the big gate - The entrance of PaayGaah is made of second hand woods - We recycled them to our gate
- A big window to be made in this spot - The bedroom view
- A big mess , moving the stuff to the workshop - finally we started working on our projects after organizing this big mess
- The first exhibition at PaayGaah and our first group exhibition - Titled "Momentum Nov 4th 2016" - Please visit https://paaygaah.com/en/memory.html for more information
- little by little they grow - Spring time is always wonderful - When the trees wake up from their long winter time sleep - they always wake up beautifully
- We shaped the garden gradually - every year we bring soil, shape a part of the land and plant trees - the soil of our village is salty and not good for planting - we learned a lot in the process of planting and growing trees - Not only in Gardening but in life too
- One of PaayGaah guardians - co-existing with friendship and kindness - The best companion of mankind indeed
- The music room and "Tabrizi" trees
- "Tabrizi" trees grow fast and they break the wind - they can be planted with little space next to each other
- Babak came to PaayGaah -He is a great person and has a wonderful soul - we had a nice evening and a nicer jam session with him
- A beautiful Jam session - Kave on Guitar acoustic, Hoda plays "Kooze", Esfand Sings and parviz on Sax - Soheil is producing sounds here
- We change the function of workshop space from time to time - according to our projects and residents required space , the function of space changes
- Working process - "Perception" piece is being made by Sanaz
- Sheida was the first young artist who came to PaayGaah - She was working on her project titled "Lost" - We became dear friends since then- Sheida is now(since 2019) studying in
art & design university of Linz.
- The work had two pieces made from wood, plaster, resin and the second part was a virtual image projected on a wolf figure she made from mdf. Please visit
https://paaygaah.com/en/kaargaah.html to see her final work.
- Soheil in working process- PaayGaah is a good place to focus and think- Away from pollution, crowdedness and craziness of Tehran, Silence is endless here.
- Arash is a poet and filmmaker- He came to PaayGaah for a short visit and used the silence for writing a poem.
- "Without Words" was the pre-show of "Interstice - Without Words" international group exhibition which was performed in the end of 2018- There was video screening and the participant artists presented their installations in the pre-show.
- Ellen Vårtun(Norwegian visual artist) was one of the participant and her work was a performance piece titled "The Magic Bullet"- She performed in two days during the pre-show week
- Ellen Vårtun performing "The Magic Bullet" in "Without Words" pre-show - December 2018
- "Too Late to clean" video art by Salla Valle(Finnish visual artist)- She is one of the participating artists of "Interstice - Without Words"
- "Outside" video art by Beny Wagner(German visual artist) in "Without Words" pre-show
- "Ell Sol" Catalan guest artist - preforming in "Without Words" pre-show- He is very passionate and his music shows his strong emotions very well