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Museum of Contemporary Arts, Chicago, Atrium Project, 2021

Peach House’s 5 Bucks Morning Special is organized by Bana Kattan, Pamela Alper Associate Curator, in the second-floor atrium.

The Brooklyn Rail, 2021

 In March of 2020, an article in Psychology Today advised those suffering already from touch deprivation to self-soothe with “stretching, yoga, self-massage, [or] even just gently stroking your own face or arms, or rubbing your feet.”7 But Orkideh Torabi’s brightly dyed textile, Your Fly’s Open!

Art X Puzzles, 2021 

Orkideh Torabi’s work features a bathhouse scene in which men have gathered to socially interact with one another. The characters that feature in her work are inspired by the people she encountered during her upbringing in Iran. The painting appears in a split-scene style that replicates the form of Persian miniature painting, which frequently positioned views of interior and exterior spaces side by side.

Art-Aspen, 2020 

What do these ten works have in common? It might simply be a shared understanding that the human condition is somewhat absurd. And while I’ve always been drawn to art that underlines our shared quirks, foibles, and minor stupidities, I also find myself tugged in a figurative direction here. Maybe it’s the fact of not seeing too many other humans these days, and being able to transport so quickly, through these images, into other lives, other rooms. After all, you don’t have to socially distance from a painting.

La Times, 2019 


The men in Orkideh Torabi’s pictures at Richard Heller Gallery don’t really know what they’re doing.

That’s not unusual: Some men have gotten so used to pretending to be experts, they’ve also gotten used to thinking they’re more capable and intelligent than those around them, including women and children.

Galerie Magazine, 2019


Orkideh Torabi’s colorful portraits appear almost cartoonish; however, their messages denote much weightier issues. By flipping the gender roles of subjects in art history—take, for example, Venus in Sandro Botticelli’s famous painting—she makes a strong statement about women’s role in society. She intentionally features images of only men emasculated through the lens of the female perspective. These vibrant works have been showcased at Expo Chicago, NADA, and Untitled as well as in solo shows at L.A.’s Richard Heller Gallery.

Elephant Magazine, 2019

By Louise Benson

Toxic Masculinity Gets a Makeover Courtesy of Iranian Artist Orkideh Torabi

The men who appear in the cartoonish paintings of the Chicago-based artist Orkideh Torabi let it all hang out. An unusual dye transfer technique lends a whimsical quality to her work, treading the line between sympathy and satire. Words by Louise Benson

Artillery Magazine, 2019 

By Annabel Osberg 

Orkideh Torabi

Orkideh Torabi’s painted burlesques of men offer sardonic commentary on patriarchal oppression of women in Iran and beyond. The Tehran-born, Chicago-based artist’s 2017 LA show featured mostly frontal portraits of caricatural men whose stark, formal poses against Persian patterns heightened their appearances of self-satisfied foolishness.

Wanna Join

Juxtapoz Magazine, 2019 

Orkideh Torabi’s Latest Solo Show Laughs at Patriarchy 

 Richard Heller Gallery presents Give Them All They Want, a solo show from Iranian-born, Chicago-based artist Orkideh Torabi.

“The primary source of inspiration for me is the current repression of women throughout patriarchal societies. I depict men as funny, cartoonish figures in decorative colors. This representation aims to mock the complex and fragile masculinity of patriarchal societies in which men control every aspect of life.”

Ball of Fire

Hi Fructose, 2019

Working with fabric dye on cotton, Iranian artist Orkideh Torabi creates scenes and portraits that poke fun at the men behind patriarchal societies. The works are tethered to the history of her home country, taking influence from antique Persian miniatures. The artist is currently based in Chicago.

Art Now LA, 2019

Give them all they want refers to men: the subject and objects of Orkideh Torabi‘s gaze. Her colorful paintings, created by screening fabric dye onto cotton, explore issues of patriarchy, infusing this loaded topic with a wry sense of humor.

You Are Always Hungry

Lenny Letter, 2018

Iranian artist Orkideh Torabi grew up with art all around her. “Culturally, art has always been a part of Iranian daily life,” she says, her voice cultivated and composed over the phone. And within her family, education and creativity were always celebrated…

I'll Catch You

Hyperallergic, 2018

As is often the case at NADA, painting predominates, and there are lots of lovely works on canvas this year. The most eye-catching painting display is in the shared booth of Horton Gallery and Western Exhibitions, with its ornate orange wallpaper pattern, which serves as a popping backdrop for Orkideh Torabi’s playful and attractive portraits.

The comp Magazine, 2018

In examining historical narrative paintings, Persian culture, and her personal life experience, Iranian artist Orkideh Torabi crafts fascinating sardonic tales that comment on our male dominated world.

Sit tight

Smart Museum, 2018

The Smart Museum of Art acquired 9 new works of art (PDF list of acquisitions) to lend out to University of Chicago students through the Art to Live With program. The works—by Suzanne Anker, Sabba Elahi, Ester Hernandez, Takashi Murakami, Kevin Pang, Gordon Parks, Pope.L, Alison Saar, and Orkideh Torabi

Takashi Murakami

Amadeus Magazine, 2017

It wasn’t too long ago that artist Orkideh Torabi decided to consciously remove women from her paintings. Torabi’s work has largely functioned to draw attention to the personal, political and social issues women face in patriarchal societies, however in an attempt to subvert stereotypes she wanted to tell this narrative without having to visually depict women.

Artillery Magazine, 2017

In Orkideh Torabi’s caricatures of silly men, comedy and poignancy stealthily overcome the unsuspecting viewer. Midway through this exhibition, one is liable to titter aloud as the portraits’ repetitive simplicity resounds to a starkly touching yet hilarious effect.

Art and Cake LA, 2017

For decades, Chinatown was dismissed as a cheesy tourist destination that had a couple of decent dim sum joints. In 1974, it was name-checked in a classic Jack Nicholson movie. In the early 1980’s, local punks had to choose which sweaty dive club to mosh the night away…

New City Magazine, 2016 

Orkideh Torabi confirms the construction of masculinity as a farce. In her first solo show in the United States, she has assembled twenty of her silkscreened monoprints that mimic official state portraits.

BmoreArt, 2016

Best and Worst at Untitled 2016 by Suzy Kopf

Untitled is beachy and beautiful, set in a huge white tent right on the sand. It’s much smaller than Basel, but the quality is high. We liked this fair much better for a number of reasons.

Chicago Reader, 2016

I’m of the belief that art can’t really be taught—and yet, every year institutions of higher learning turn out thousands of graduates with degrees that certify them to be masters of art or “fine art.”

Installation view at Hyde Park Art Center