Shaghayegh Cyrous is an Iranian American artist and curator based in San Francisco. She started her art practice in Tehran, Iran, where she began her artistic practice with urban installation, performance, and photography. Since 2011 and moving to the bay area and experiencing life from the lens of a refugee, her work has dealt with the experience of cross-cultural communication and translation, addressing predicaments of estrangement and distance caused by political and cultural power dynamics. Her projects incorporate interactive time-based strategies such as social practice, socially engaged art, and participatory performances, as well as digital technologies such as video installation and live video chats, to create poetic spaces and opportunities for human connection.
As she continues to research different strategies and languages of navigating various political and cultural issues, her practice has extended beyond her art into the curatorial realm. Her current focus is on the compression of time and space resulting from digital technologies such as Skype, Line, and Telegram. These technologies enable her and others like her to connect “live” to their home countries, reflecting the desires of exiles and immigrants for communication with homelands that exist beyond their present times and locations. Her most recent work explores how digital media plays this critical role in the lives of exiles and immigrants, forcing them to navigate two different spaces – the physical and the virtual.
Cyrous holds a BA in Visual Art from For Science and Culture University of Tehran, and an MFA in Social Practice from California College of the Arts. She recently received Bangkit Arise international art residency of the Asian Art Museum and Clarion Alley Mural Project and performed at the North x North Festival at Anchorage Museum. She has exhibited, participated, performed and curated internationally at venues including Tehran MOCA, Saba Museum in Tehran, Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, Jane Addams Hull-House Museum in Chicago, British Museum in London, Anchorage Museum, and SFMOMA.
Her other professional experiences include; Programming and Communication Associate at Aggregate Space Gallery in Oakland, researcher and production assistant of Jim Campbell for the Day For Night project at Salesforce Tower, Board Member of Clarion Alley Mural Project, Civic & Community Engagement Coordinator, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco.
Photo by Baharak and Behnaz Khaleghi