Video Spotlight: Shiva Ahmadi
Video Spotlight: Shiva Ahmadi
Lotus is a single-channel video installation inspired by two Buddha sculptures from the Asia Society Museum Collection.
Asia Society
September 10, 2021 to January 16, 2022
Get tickets

Artist details

Shiva Ahmadi’s paintings, sculptures, and animations offer a critique of contemporary political conflicts through the tradition of Persian miniature painting. The artist first became interested in politics during the American invasion of Iraq in 2003 and while her compositions most often focus on tensions within the Middle East and between East and West, Ahmadi is ultimately interested in examining the relationship between absolute power and corruption. The artist was born in 1975 in Tehran, Iran, and currently lives and works in the Bay Area, California. She received a BFA in painting from Azad University in 1998 and MFA degrees from Wayne State University in 2003 and the Cranbrook Academy of Arts in 2005.

More video details

The viewer is introduced to a bucolic scene that depicts the enlightened Buddha sitting atop a blooming lotus throne, and surrounded by his loyal monkey subjects, who bear offerings of delicate bubbles. As the narrative progresses, the monkeys’ bubbles turn into bombs and grenades while their behavior grows violent. As the Buddha begins to participate in the ensuing chaos, his appearance becomes increasingly warrior-like. The landscape changes into a dystopia filled with war and destruction as the once enlightened leader is transformed into a common tyrant.


Asia Society
725 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10021

About The Performance

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Maecenas vel sollicitudin mi. Donec sit amet tincidunt dolor. Vestibulum molestie est sollicitudin lacus molestie, in tincidunt magna pharetra. Cras at ante sed nibh pulvinar congue. Nunc dictum ipsum purus, sit amet volutpat libero porttitor eu. Proin lectus mauris, varius in sagittis vel, malesuada et mi. Nam vulputate eleifend posuere. Nam vehicula elit in risus semper lacinia. Maecenas semper nisl ac dolor vulputate dictum. Ut ut turpis eget dui varius pellentesque. Nunc odio dolor, aliquam non venenatis et, efficitur in nisi.

Maecenas rhoncus viverra arcu, non accumsan leo. Nullam condimentum mi vitae hendrerit venenatis. Fusce sit amet neque sit amet lectus rhoncus tempus at nec dui. Aliquam erat volutpat. Maecenas pretium diam in laoreet ornare. Pellentesque leo diam, consequat eget magna at, imperdiet euismod neque. In hac habitasse platea dictumst. Integer facilisis justo ac fermentum mattis. Donec a dignissim tortor. Nunc nunc metus, faucibus vitae bibendum nec, vestibulum eu magna. Ut nec eros et nibh tempor pharetra eget eget lacus.

Integer imperdiet tellus vel quam imperdiet porttitor. Suspendisse tincidunt vestibulum venenatis. Morbi pellentesque eleifend nulla a aliquam. Vestibulum nec egestas felis. Nunc et tellus porta, consectetur lacus nec, auctor neque. Duis vitae ex eget orci blandit feugiat. Fusce maximus blandit efficitur. Vivamus non sem at ipsum aliquet mattis in ac enim. Vivamus lacinia semper nibh, et fringilla enim varius vel.

Suspendisse iaculis ligula non mollis lacinia. Pellentesque semper congue urna, non pretium ante aliquet nec. Vestibulum quis tempor dui. Proin pharetra accumsan est, et pulvinar leo elementum in. Sed dignissim massa ipsum, id pretium lacus luctus a. Quisque hendrerit ligula ut neque scelerisque, eget egestas lectus efficitur. Nulla facilisi. Donec sem dolor, pulvinar lobortis placerat nec, sollicitudin ac ipsum. Nunc quis ligula sed ligula condimentum venenatis. Aliquam vel semper lectus. Duis laoreet ornare mi, at iaculis tortor. Etiam nulla risus, vestibulum sit amet feugiat sed, molestie vitae ante. Nullam sed vehicula purus. Donec egestas turpis tristique mattis molestie. Nunc et iaculis elit, non molestie odio.

Praesent id maximus tortor, in sodales turpis. Cras efficitur dui vel sem ultrices, ac faucibus tortor sagittis. Proin est elit, mollis ut volutpat vel, consectetur ac sapien. Nunc imperdiet ante at urna rhoncus eleifend. Proin metus augue, fringilla vitae facilisis sit amet, lacinia quis mauris. Morbi fermentum lorem sed porttitor consequat. Vestibulum consectetur cursus sapien, nec sagittis nibh tempus id. Nunc iaculis augue faucibus augue fringilla, ut vestibulum ex finibus. Vivamus tempor dui eu dui rhoncus venenatis. Mauris nec mauris risus. Morbi at ipsum scelerisque, fermentum felis non, porta ex.

Image: Bronx Museum