Separzadeh’s work viscerally engages the viewer by presenting alternate interpretations of controversial as well as benign contemporary issues. Playing social commentator, the artist presents the subversive and often conflicting nature of scenes that at first appear familiar yet discomforting. These images often evoke strong emotions that the viewer is not prepared to experience. This is intended. Such responses represent a moment of transformation in which the viewer’s habitus is challenged and either broken or made stronger. Separzadeh’s strength is in his ability to challenge the viewer’s protocol of being-in-the-world, to activate latent extrasensory responses through visual stimulation.
The artist’s preferred vehicle of expression is the body. Taken as the locus of existence, Separzadeh collapses the Cartesian dualism between form and content by transforming internal struggle into external embodiment. Rather than profaning the lived-moment, Separzadeh suspends the body at the climax of its perfomativity. The body becomes an enclosure, the sacred and untouchable suspension of meaning between the virtual and emotional. Through communication, these become transformed into real reactions that extend beyond the artist into greater potentiality.
Through his highly stylized admixture of irony, metaphor, and symbolism, the artist creates images that transcend the traditional bounds of photography. Enhanced by digital effects and selective editing techniques, Separzadeh’s images read like abstract ethnographies of the unconventional. Exoticizing the familiar, Separzadeh showcases the potential of the everyday world to reveal the inconsistency of human existence. If one of man’s deepest archetypal yearnings is to run rampant in the realm of the unknown and return home safely, Separzadeh is an unreliable guide. He slyly provokes his viewers, eliciting a heightened sense of reality only to abandon them in the realm of their own realization.