Davood Roostaei was a remarkable artist and human being whose life was marked by political turmoil and artistic innovation. Born in Iran in 1959, his art studies were abruptly interrupted in 1979 when he was imprisoned for two years for creating art deemed subversive by the Iranian regime. After his release, he realized that he needed to find a new way to express the reality he had seen, imagined, and experienced. This led him to create Cryptorealism, a revolutionary painting style that blended reality and imagination to create a surreal, dreamlike world.
Roostaei’s paintings were characterized by their bold colors, intricate patterns, and hidden meanings that required active participation by the viewer. His technique involved using his fingers rather than a conventional brush to create a visceral connection to his art. His work reflected the fragmentation of the world, with images referencing the past, present, and future. He studied art in Iran, Hamburg, and Cologne, and his first solo exhibitions were held in Germany in 1988, where he introduced his vision of Cryptorealism.
In 2000, Roostaei moved to Los Angeles, where he continued to produce art that absorbed the frenetic and transitional nature of the city. His work was informed not only by the artistic world but also by the political world, with his young life in Iran full of political turmoil. He remained political to this day, donating a portion of the proceeds from his art to various causes internationally. As an innovative and visionary artist, his works were exhibited in international art fairs and museums across Europe, China, and America.
Sadly, Roostaei passed away on March13, 2023. The passing of Davood Roostaei is a great loss for the world of contemporary art. His art was a testament to his unique perspective, and his contributions to the art world will not be forgotten.
We extend our deepest sympathies to his friends and family during this difficult time. The loss of such a talented and inspiring individual is deeply felt by all who knew him, and his legacy will continue to inspire future generations of artists and art enthusiasts.