Dubai-based artist explores why symmetry is so satisfying

A piece from Series 1, part of the "1, 2, 3" exhibition. (Image supplied)
Updated 01 October 2018

Dubai-based artist explores why symmetry is so satisfying

  • Self-taught artist Nima Nabavi unveiled his first-ever solo exhibition in Dubai
  • It is a fascinating deep dive into the art of geometry

DUBAI: Self-taught artist Nima Nabavi recently unveiled his first-ever solo exhibition at Dubai’s The Third Line gallery and it’s a fascinating deep dive into the art of geometry.

Titled “1, 2, 3,” the exhibition is comprised of three series of art. Series 1, completed over the course of five months, features 16 black-and-white pieces in which a pattern of lines gradually becomes denser toward the center.

“With my geometry one of the things I like to do is take the smallest and most basic form, like a line that’s rigid, and try to create some sort of texture out of it by repeating it thousands of times,” the artist told Arab News.

“As you look at it in the very beginning, it’s open in the middle and as you move across this diamond of density starts shrinking until its dense in the middle. I wanted to show the possibility of movement, texture and gradient, but only use one color and one form — a line — to try to create that,” he added, noting that “some of the pieces have upwards of 13,000 lines in them.”

Series 2 marks a progression from the previous body with the introduction of color, according to a press release — eight different hues appear in each work in various sequences, resulting in polychromatic ripple effects. Meanwhile, Series 3 is a synthesis of the elements found in the previous two: Color, thickness, movement and size come together to replicate patterns found in living systems.

“I’ve always found peace — like all of us — in symmetry,” Nabavi said. “Everything in my life is messy, my brain is messy, so I’ve always really liked patterns.”

And he isn’t the only one, perfectly aligned boxes, sharp lines and neat symmetrical forms have fascinated many an artist and layman — you would be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t take satisfaction from aesthetic order and perfection.

The Iran-born artist is keen to explore why people are so fascinated by such art forms.

“Why are we all drawn to symmetry and geometry?” he asked, “Why do we like these things that don’t actually exist – it’s not a picture of a sunrise or anything – it’s this conceptual, mathematical object.”

“1, 2, 3,” is on show at The Third Line in Dubai’s Alserkal Avenue until Nov. 3, 2018.

Watch: Final ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ trailer released online

The film is set to premier on Dec. 19 in the Middle East. (Supplied)
Updated 22 October 2019

Watch: Final ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ trailer released online

DUBAI: The makers of “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” that is set to premier in the Middle East on Dec. 19, have released the latest and final trailer for the film, to much online fanfare.


Lucasfilm and director J.J. Abrams joined forces once again to take viewers on an epic journey to a galaxy far, far away with, the conclusion of the so-called Skywalker saga.

The film stars late American actress Carrie Fisher playing Princess Leia, award-winning Mark Hamill playing Luke Skywalker and Adam Driver who plays Kylo Ren.  

“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” is directed by J.J. Abrams and produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Abrams and Michelle Rejwan. Callum Greene, Tommy Gormley and Jason McGatlin serve as executive producers. The movie was written by J.J. Abrams & Chris Terrio.