At a time of increased division, conflict and polarisation around the world, Sara Shamsavari’s works explore and celebrate global identity. While each of her photographic series has a distinct focus, together, they all seek to encourage a deeper understanding of our nuances as human beings in contrast to the current popular narratives that misrepresent, malign and often succeed in dividing and ‘othering’ those in the minority.
Born in Tehran in the midst of the Iranian revolution, Sara overcame childhood cancer while she and her family fled persecution. Being raised in London from the age of two inspired her exploration of identity, while surviving both the revolution and illness engendered a profound desire to make a difference through art.
Shamsavari is described as “energetic and forceful...weighed with conviction” (The Guardian) with “the rare gift of capturing how the light strikes a face to illuminate hope” (Aesthetica), her work as “unflinchingly honest portraits” (Brownbook UAE),“revealing a unique empathy with her subjects”(i-D).
Educated at Camberwell School of Art and Design and Central Saint Martins, Sara produces work in a range of mediums including music, painting, photography and film, choosing photography as the first of her professional endeavours for its ability to create an instant bond between the artist and the outside world.
Shamsavari’s work exhibits internationally in galleries, museums, public and political spaces including the MoCP (Chicago), MoAD(San Francisco) Lowe Museum of art (Miami) and The Provincial Centre for Plastic Art and Design (Havana) ICA, City Hall and The Royal Festival Hall (London), Espace Pierre Cardin (Paris), Fondazione Biagiotti Progretto Arte (Florence) and Rush Arts Gallery (New York). Her work, exhibitions and profile have been featured multiple times across various media and publications including BBC1, ITN, SKY1, New York Times, The Guardian, Huffington Post, Elle, i-D and Dazed & Confused.
Sara has delivered artist talks and workshops internationally at cultural institutions including Tate Britain, Southbank Centre and the Royal Institution of Great Britain as well as guest lecturing at UAL, UCA, NYU (Abu Dhabi) John Cabot (Rome) and Syracuse University.
With a belief that artists can be leaders in social and spiritual progress, Sara seeks to empower both participants and viewers with the endeavour to encourage a transformation in the way we view society and ourselves.