Simard Bilodeau Contemporary is proud to present Shirzan, the debut solo exhibition of 23-year-old, Iranian American painter, Yalda Sepahpour.

Sepahpour’s new body of work continues the fluid evolution of her meditation on female empowerment. While her themes remain consistent, this series of paintings is the first she has completed since receiving her MFA, and the first to engage her complete concentration and focus. With the constraints of academia behind her, Sepahpour’s unique vision of feminism has blossomed. She steadfastly conjures imagery that blurs the line between metaphorical and historical. The female subjects in her paintings possess physical strength, grace, independence, and beauty. They glide across the canvas draped in robes, perhaps on their way to go to battle, or perhaps they ride to feel freedom in the wind. The horses Sepahpour presents mimic the unrestrained quality of her women. Together, they are a formidable pair that manages to appear centuries old while represented timeless and contemporary ideas of women in power. The title of this exhibition, Shirzan, is a Persian word that translates literally to “lion woman,” and colloquially to a fierce or powerful woman, capturing both the spirit of the artist and the subjects of her work.

Yalda Sepahpour (b. 1995, Tehran, Iran, lives and works in Laguna Beach, California) holds a BFA from The Laguna College of Art and Design. Her work has been shown at The Los Angeles Art Show, Aqua Art Miami, The Shanghai Art Fair, Art Palm Springs, Art Beijing, and is part of significant private and corporate art collections in North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.