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Hojat Amani believes that in the secular as well as many religious traditions from the Near East, there have always been angelic beings. These were depicted by the Zoroastrians in Iran, Buddhists in Bamiyan, the Arabs of Mesopotamia, Mani’s of Babylon and Aramaean prophets. This depiction was an indication of the belief in God. The same type of beliefs can be seen in Islamic traditions and sacred books.
As an art student, Hojat used to draw freely, without a conscious direction. As the ink would touch the paper, he would play with it and find it turn into an angel. This was the beginning of his contemplation on angels and thoughts of how he could create contemporary angels with new narratives and experiences.
For his “Angel” series, Hojat used traditional Islamic and Iranian motifs to paint wings on a white curtain. He asked his subjects to stand in front of these screens and imagine their desires. He found that often people were serious, other times they enjoyed the experience and both these reactions were important. Even though in Iran many do not like being photographed, especially women, because of their religious beliefs, Hojat found several people who were eager to experience standing infront of the wings as if this would fulfil their desires or grant their wishes. Hojat also came across individuals who felt they had sinned and were therefore unworthy of the experience, as well as prevented from proceeding with the project in some places because the police felt the concept was unusual or anti-religious.