Artist Showcase: Samaneh Atef

Samaneh Atef Derakshan was born in 1989 in the town of Astaneh Ashrafieh in the northern part of Iran. Although she had trained to be a software engineer, in 2014 she decided to devote all her time to her drawings, which she had been creating compulsively since she was a child. This turning point in her life came after a ‘real artist,’ as she referred to him, saw her drawings and encouraged her to keep creating. While being fairly inexperienced as a full-time artist, having participated in only a handful of exhibitions, Samaneh’s artistic voice is powerful and personal, while her aesthetic vocabulary is unmistakable. Below, Samaneh answers a few questions about her life and work.


samaneh atef 30x42 cm pen on paper

When did your interest in art/creating begin?

From my childhood when I was 8 years old, I made a dough out of bread crumbs and made sculptures. In my dreams, I was an artist – I didn’t know what was my field but I was famous and an artist.

pen on paper 100x70 cm

What is your starting point for each piece?

When I walk around my nightmares, my pains, my happiness and my wishes. I try to show stories from my life.

samaneh pen on Paper 42X 30 cm

Who/what influences your work?

Mr. Khodashenas, my friend and Graphic master. The first time he saw my drawings he told me they were amazing and unique. He said you should continue and people will know who you are!

pen on paper 100x70 cm 2016

What do you hope the viewer gets from your work?

I hope they understand my drawings, I hope people see my mission about equality between women and men in my country and all over the world.

samaneh pen on Paper

What do you think about the term Outsider Art? Is there a term that you think works better?

Outsider art for me means freedom without limits. People called us outsider Artist, I think I’m an artist! The name is not important, feelings and love in art are important.

What are you working on at the moment?

I am working on my unique project,that I can’t explain right now.

samaneh pen on paper 20x30 cm

Where do you see your work taking you in the future?

I have a mission for all women in my land. In the future, I want do special things for this. I have many ideas but I need the support.

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