Education: University of East London
Sam Tahmassebi b.1985 (London, United Kingdom) is a visual artist working in a range of mediums including photography, sculpture, paint and installation. His practice is influenced by questions of society, psychology and philosophy, and their interconnectedness. His last and longest series used Instagram as the medium, exhibition space and point of critique, questioning the reverberations of ‘likes’, manufacturing hyper-reality and the consequences on society. His current series, Chaosmotic, are paintings that explore the effects of the Internet, social media and commercialism on consciousness and reality. He is the recipient of the Road to Rio Award from the University of East London and National Portrait Gallery, and the Graduate Award from the National Open Art competition.
About the work
Sam Tahmassebi’s work is enmeshed in the antagonisms of history and its effects 21st Century society whilst grappling with the digital era; consumerism and communication, which shape reality, social structures and ideologies. In all his work, Sam questions current trends, social paradigms IRL and online, as well as human nature. His paintings are centred on the historical and cultural symbolism of cartoon characters, their appearances evoking or reflecting a reaction to the symbols, brand logos or imagery around them. Their childish appearance is a farce; they actually convey the conflicting dynamics of race relations, geopolitics and social class dynamics. The overall aesthetic of Tahmassebi’s work reflects contemporary obsessions and the digital; playing with digital aesthetic-modes and screen-like flatness and illusions, mirroring the depreciation of images and their temporary nature, whilst simultaneously making them concrete.