Tabatabaei, who has used different animals, as an allegory of human characters, in his works, said: “in books such as George Orwell’s Animal Farm, Ubayd Zakani’s Mush-O-Gorbeh (Mouse and Cat), Kalila and Demna, and even in the cartoons that we were following during our childhood, using animal metaphors make the audience’s mind more flexible to understand the work more easily. In addition, it can be said that since the cave period, animals have been attractive to humans, much attractive that even for expressing the characteristics of individuals, people use examples of animals, for instance, if someone runs fast, people say he/ she is running like a deer or when it comes to precision and sharpness of the eyes of people, they relate it to the eagle.”
Like in his other works, he portrays human, without head and body. The reason for him to eliminate the head and face of the figures in his works, is to depict the overemphasis in appearance, and he believes: “nowadays in the world, the appearance plays the significant role for people, rather than the inner meaning of human. The system of capitalism and imperialism has attracted people's attention to the appearance and fashion.
Although attention to appearance is not a bad thing, but it takes many hours of people and engages their mind, in fact the system of capitalism does not give any choice to individuals, they either have to accompany or stay alone. On the other hand, to not showing the head of these figures is to get audiences involved, so they, in the way that desires them, will be able to observe the works and communicate with them mentally.”
A world submerged in a sad peace!
In Mohammad Tabatabai’s exploring point of view, expelled man from Paradise has no place on the Earth and for this reason is suspended while traveling to a new land in a very dark and quiet space.
The sad stillness of the space tells us about decomposing an optimistic security. A mandatory peace for survival is the result of the whole history of human life. The figures are called to an absolute silence, an inevitable silence that has come willy-nilly after a fruitless controversy to make “being” possible.
In these ghostly figures, woman is a concept swinging between two meanings: in the first concept, she appears as a sacred creature that is a symbol of birth and fertility to make life possible. You can experience peace and security in her arms. But in the second concept, she is a young, beautiful and enchanting woman that her creative power is reached to absurdity. She is a creature with disheveled hair that failure to visualize her face besides her grandiose cloths will intensify this swing.
In this way, all audiences experience a moment of suspense in Mohammad Tabatabai’s Paintings; a calm yet daunting suspension. Somayeh Ramezanmahi