He was born and raised in Tabriz, in 1935. He attended the Tehran School of Decorative Arts (Honarestan-e honarha-ye ziba), and a group of artists in 1951. His teachers at the newly established school included, Sohrab Sepehri, Mansureh Hosayni, Mehdi Vishkai, Jalal Al-e Ahmad, Simin Daneshvar, and Yahya Zoka. In 1961, after a three-years gap, he continued his art education at the Faculty of Decorative Arts. While in the college he married Louise Hamidi, and the couple had a son named Nima.
Ghandriz and Morteza Momayyez played pivotal roles in the establishment of Talar-e Iran (Iran Gallery), which was founded in 1964, in collaboration with Sadeq Tabrizi, Faramarz Pilaram, and Masoud Arabshahi. “The establishment of Talar-e Iran would have never been possible if it wasn’t for Momayyez, and the four-member group would have never joined the students at Tehran University if it wasn’t for Ghandriz”. They organized one major exhibition at the space and later another show of several avant-garde artists including Sepehri, Bijan Saffari, Marcos Grigorian, Parviz Tanavoli and Manuchehr Sheybani. After the first exhibition at Talar-e Iran, however, the group separated. Ghandriz, Tabrizi, Pilaram, and Arabshahi also cooperated in the establishment of Iran’s first interior design office in 1964, which also saw its end after the untimely death of Ghandriz at the age of thirty. Talar-e Iran was later named Talar-e Ghandriz.
While still in high school, Ghandriz was drawn to the progressive realist paintings of Ilya Repin (1844-1930) and Russian-Armenian seascape artist Ivan Aivazovsky (1817-1900). Later in college, and before turning to a paradigmatic exhortation of modernist language within local Iranian narrative, and developing his own semi-abstract style, he was introduced to European modernism, and he delved into the tradition of Russian realists and European classical and figurative art. Incorporating the figurative techniques of old masters, he created his own corporeal abstraction, which also indicates a process of gradual formalization, progressing from free forms to order. Matisse, Picasso, and Persian miniature paintings inspired Ghandriz’s early figurative work. He chose, as a critic commented, “mystical symbols to combine traditional and modern elements into his abstract designs” (Keshmirshekan, 2009).
The ten-year span of Ghandriz’s career coincided with the opening of the Tehran Biennials, which, inspired by the Venice Biennale and supported by the Ministry of Culture, were organized in an attempt to promote contemporary arts, focusing on Persian heritage and civilization (Yarshater, 1979). Ghandriz’s works were shown at several exhibitions, including the Third, Fourth, and Fifth Tehran Biennials, the Collection of Modern Iranian Art, which toured the United States and Israel, the Sao Paulo Art Biennial, and the Iranian Contemporary Art Exhibition in Paris.
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