The “I” is always changing but never turns into “You” is an Open Studio – Work in Progress by Mehdi Shiri presented at Aaran Projects for Limited Access 8.
After my exhibition titled “Life”_ consisted of a painting series and an animation video titled “Still Life_ I began to work on accompanying the paintings with Animation and video. In “Still Life” I tried to animate and narrate the story of an essentially static and unnarratable thing. To do so, I narrated a story about myself and my life too. I continued this approach in “Bullfighting with Horses”. At first, the project was an attempt to redefine one of the paintings of Pablo Picasso. I recorded some parts of the exhibition and edited them to make the video version of this painting series. To further accomplish my goal, I removed the storyboarding process and added the painterly themes and routines, like standing behind the canvas, to my practice. Now in accordance with the mentioned approach, I am making a portrait film. I’d like to narrate a life story by depicting an animated portrait. I have put the camera focus on my most intimate friends and my family. I recreate their living place, daily life and some parts of their talks without any manipulations.
1- Fixing drawing cardboard on the wall. Arranging the tripod and the camera in front of it. Draw the frames one by one. Taking a photo of the finished drawing. Erasing the drawing and draw the next frame. Continuing the drawing to finish the whole shot. The last drawing of each shot has a particular quality. It is both at the service of completing the animation and is an independent artwork in itself. I cut to the next shot under three conditions:
-Having the final drawing compared to what I had on my mind.
-The cardboard loses its resistance to erasing and redrawing.
2- Painting the first step with acrylics or oil paint.
3- Recording the whole process.