Mohammad Reza Khalaji is a contemporary Iranian sculptor. Born in 1974 Zanjan, Iran, he is a graduate of sculpture from the University of Tehran, Faculty of Fine Arts.
His sculptures generally represent a combination of abstraction and figuration, typically merged within one single piece. They usually employ different qualities of various materials, acquired through complex making procedures. Extra-fine finishing and high-quality execution have long been a major characteristic of Khalaji’s artistic idiom. At times, Indigenous aesthetic elements, including Iranian-Islamic calligraphy adorn parts of his pieces.
Khalaji’s first solo exhibition in Iranshahr Art Gallery included a series of semi-figurative aluminum sculptures marked by an extra-fine execution, using calligraphy incised on some facets. These pieces included figures trapped and stuck in amorphous, bag-like structures. Extra feet of the figures symbolized an urge to escape the overwhelming, solid structures. His second show in Iranshahr art gallery demonstrates a considerable transition. Executed in copper and aluminum, the pieces combine an abstract and figurative approach, and the remarkable technical quality and fine finish appear side by side a crude, expressive texture. Erosions, fluxes and burnt surfaces uncover a new sculptural idiom. The figures tend towards abstraction and the confining structures, a metaphor of traditions and social norms, are symbolized by the formless restraining constructions and the feet trapped in them.
M.R Khalaji has participated in several group and solo exhibitions, including group exhibitions in Mexico-city and Tehran Contemporary Sculpture Biennial. In May 2019 he participated in “Revolution”, the International Fine-Craft Biennial in Grand Pallais, Paris.