Anahita Norouzi Systema Naturae 

Date(s): Feb 4 to Mar 11 2023

Location: Salle Daniel-Dion et Su Schnee


Systema Naturae 

Anahita Norouzi, view from the installation Systema Naturae, 2021-2022

Systema Naturae is a multipart installation by artist Anahita Norouzi that includes large-scale fabric prints, a sculpture, and a series of time-lapse video works. It investigates how the production of knowledge guided by a colonial mindset has disfigured nature, created artificial landscapes and skewed relationships between humans and plants, and how these effects remain pervasive to this day.

The project stems from a commemorative stamp Norouzi received as a child from her uncle. It depicts an iris flower native to Iran, her home country, with its dark, pure purple color and majestic forms. In 1902, a specimen of this iris was collected on Mount Damavand, at the northeast of her hometown, Tehran, by J. Bornmuller, a German botanist and expeditionist. He named the flower Iris Demawendica and published his “discovery” in the Gardeners’ Chronicle. Nowadays, genetically modified bulbs of Iris Demawendica are globally mass-produced for ornamental purposes, severing the flower from its vernacular name, traditional herbal uses, and overall cultural history.

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Systema Naturae 

Anahita Norouzi, view from the installation Systema Naturae, 2021-2022

Anahita Norouzi is a multidisciplinary artist, originally from Tehran and active in Montreal since 2015. She holds advanced degrees in Fine Arts and French Literature from Concordia University in Montreal. Her research explores notions of displacement, memory and identity from a psycho-historical point of view.

Norouzi excavates historical narratives in order to consider the global impact of colonialism and how it permeates contemporary culture. Instigated by marginalized or forgotten histories, her work is articulated across a range of materials and mediums including sculpture, installation, photography, video, and performance. 

Norouzi has taken part in several individual and collective exhibitions. She is the recipient of the Grantham Foundation Award, the Liz Crockford Artist Fund Award, the Vermont Studio Center Merit, and a finalist for the Magic of Persia Contemporary Art Prize for pieces shown at the Royal College of Art in London and in Dubai.