Ashkan Honarvar’s Faces 5 is a collection of portraits that depict unusual and grotesque, yet artful and beautiful scars on the sitter’s face. Some are missing bits and pieces off their faces; others are being consumed by this foaming, neon-colored, condensed paint. Honarvar depicts an undeniable, unavoidable beauty while examining, according to his statement, the psychological and physical wounds inflicted upon soldiers.
It seems as if the artists is making an interesting conglomeration of otherwise-unrelated themes: art as a way to seek beauty, the grotesque and the limited conceptions of human beauty. The idea of beauty, both in the arts and society in general, is one that has been up for debate countless of times. The societal conception of beauty makes people seek beauty through coverage. Beauty, for the most part, is obtained through the act of hiding traumas, physical scars and adding or subtracting body parts.
Honarvar makes an interesting juxtaposition between the intuitive beauty of art and the unappealing, grotesque physical deformation in a human being. Both being in the same place suggests the idea that perhaps the darker sides of human physical nature could only be accepted through the artful, fictional ways of an artwork.