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Pantea Karimi

 Pantea Karimi is an Iranian-American multidisciplinary artist, researcher, and educator based in San Jose, California. Her work explores the intersection of science, art, and history through investigating documents, scientific manuscripts, and historic objects at major libraries and archives around the world. Taking a cue from her research and Iran’s historic art, and visual culture, Karimi’s work highlights political and societal issues, and personal narratives, and tackles issues of representation and dissemination of the scientific, artistic, and intellectual heritage. She employs virtual reality (VR), performative video, sound, traditional and digital print, and drawing in her work.

Karimi has exhibited internationally across a range of solo, group, and traveling exhibitions in Iran, Algeria, Germany, Croatia, Mexico, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Her works have been featured in several publications and media in Iran, Italy, Croatia, the UK, and the United States including an interview with the KQED, California Report in 2020. Her prints and installations are in private and public collections at Ruth’s Table (2017), the University of California, San Francisco’s Library and School of Dentistry (2019 and 2022), the University of California, Davis Medical Center (2019-2021), Burk Rehabilitation Hospital in New York (2021) and a commissioned installation at Stanford University (2022). She is the recipient of the 2022 Pollock-Krasner Foundation Artist Grant, the 2022 Mass MoCA the Studios Residency Award, the 2021 University of California San Francisco Library Artist in Residence Award, the 2020 City of San José's Public Art Program Art Award, the 2019 City of San Jose Arts and Cultural Exchange Grant, the 2019 Silicon Valley Artist Laureates Award, and the 2017 Kala Fellowship-Residency Award.

Pantea Karimi has conducted research at the British Library, the Institute Archives & Special Collections at MIT, the University of California, San Francisco, and the Marsh’s Library in Dublin, Ireland. Karimi is an Adjunct Faculty in the departments of Studio Art and Digital Media at the Santa Clara University and Cabrillo College and maintains a studio at Cubberley Artist Studios in Palo Alto, CA.

6 months ago


art, history, cinema, creative process, history of science, fashion, design, opera; Baroque opera, sports, dancing


Through erasing, blurring, re-drawing, de-coloring, and re-coloring the same patterns, I create new patterns and disturbed surfaces.  As a result, my 42 ft long scroll drawings visualize deconstructed, interrupted, and ambiguously arranged geometric patterns as a metaphor for political pressure and tension. I have appropriated patterns from a 97-foot late medieval Iranian document called Topkapi scroll housed at the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul, Turkey.

Augmented Scroll

Augmented Scroll, 2021, charcoal and chalk pastel on paper and wooden rod, 42 feet x 42 inches

Pantea Karimi