Bahman Mohassess

Born in 1931 Rasht, Iran – died in 2010 Rome, Italy


Bahman Mohassess was a prominent Iranian painter, sculptor and printmaker. He was also known in dramaturgical circles, due to his translation services being utilised for theatrical scripts.  

As a young painter working in a realist style, in the 1950’s Mohassess joined the Khorous-Jangi Society (literllay translated as Fighting Cock Society), an avant-garde artistic group founded by Jalil Ziapour in 1949 in Iran.


In 1954 due to political instabilities in Iran, he moved to Italy and attended the Accademia di Bella Arti di Roma, where he began experimenting with the subject matters he was later so well known for; such as; expressive and unusually formed animals, objects, the human figure, as well as mythological creatures.


Mohassess returned to Iran in 1964 with a progressive approach and became a central figure in intellectual society of Iran. In 1968 Group Panj (Panj meaning ‘five’ in Farsi) was founded by pioneers of Iranian modern art, Bahman Mohassess, Parviz Tanavoli, Charless Hossein Zenderoudi, Sohrab Sepehri and Abolghassem Saidi. The Group Panj had a very short life but left its mark on Iranian art scene.


Mohassess held several solo and group exhibitions and his works have been represented at biennales of Tehran, São Paulo, Venice and Paris, Tehran international Art Fair, Art Basel, Salon d'Automne, Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art (TMoCA), the British Museum and The Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris.


His works are part of several international private and public collections such as the British Museum, TMoCA, Niavaran Palace in Tehran, Tate Britain and LACMA.