b'Mehrdad Rashidi.When a person opens their soul to the universe it pours some of its secrets intotheir creating hands. The more open the mediating soul, and the less unen-cumbered by the stultifying accretions of formal training, the more direct andauthentic is the message. Mehrdad Rashidi is just such an artist. Like all artists worthy of the name he isimpelled by a force stronger than the rational self to create work. This forcemanifests itself at different times in a persons journey, and for Rashidi the mo-ment came in his forty-third year, more than two decades after he left his nativeIran and settled in Germany. The spontaneous message is not necessarily sim-ple, and Rashidis drawings are subtle and mysterious, their content emergingout of complex visual relationships within the image. The works seem to developfrom his creating hand like flowers growing from a seed; he does not so muchcompose as breathe life into the little pieces of card and paper on which hemakes his marks. Each work is a kind of microcosm; a world in which the everyday fuses poeticallywith the eternal, creating a sense of timelessness and the uncanny. The humanface (that mirror of the emotions and states of mind for the empathicspectator)is centrally present, embedded in the fabric of every part of Rashidis constructeduniverses. In this way it serves multiple functions, from the quiet communica-tion of feminine beauty and human contentment to symbolizing the animisticspirit in all things, from birds in flight, to petals and clouds. 5'