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Corvallis Arts Walk Spotlight: Mazdak Shadkam

Corvallis Arts Walk Spotlight: Mazdak Shadkam


The Corvallis Arts Walk has partnered with the Corvallis Guitar Society for its third anniversary event this Thursday. Guitar players from the society will be performing at stops throughout the walk to help celebrate.

With 18 participating venues and four additional pop-up art galleries, Thursday's event is biggest event ever for the Corvallis Arts Walk. It also welcomes two new locations, The Hold, downtown’s newest gallery, which will showcase artwork by Holly Campbell and Sharon Rackham King, and The Darkside Cinema. The theater will screen community digital stories created by community members during monthly workshops hosted by The Resilience Project.

A contest offering a grand prize event of art offerings from Arts Walk members is being held on the group’s Facebook; the winner will be selected from people who comment on the post. Numerous locations will be holding raffles and other activities to mark the Arts Walk's third birthday.

For more information or to comment on the CAW Facebook page, see

Here's a closer look at one of the artists to be featured during the Arts Walk: 

Name: Mazdak Shadkam

Occupation: “I work as a full-time artist and part-time college instructor of art at OSU.”

Hometown: “I was born and raised in Tehran, Iran. I did my undergraduate degree in chemical engineering and worked as an engineer until I left the country at the age of 29 and immigrated to the United States. Here in the U.S. I chose to follow my passion, which was art and did my MFA at the Washington State University.

Exhibit: “IRAN: untitled”

Location: Bison bison! Gallery, 354 SW Madison Ave., Corvallis.

Medium(s): “Photography, video and installation arts. Depending on the project I force myself to choose the right medium for that matter rather than rely on what I am best at. This way it encourages me to be a constant learner.”

About the exhibit: “In the months of August and September, I visited Iran after seven years. The reason it took me so long to go back home for a visit was the visa restrictions for most Iranians who live and work in the United States on a visa until they become permanent residents or change their visa status. The very long time of not being connected with my home country made me eagerly photograph everything around me like a tourist.

“In this exhibit, I have tried to share my very personal moments with the viewers through the lens of my cellphone while I was in Iran this summer; around 200 photographs taken on a daily basis ranging from my very private moments with my parents and family to my long walks along the streets and allies of the cities I visited are available in the form of family photo albums for the visitors of the gallery to go through while they are sitting at a bar specifically made for this show and sipping on their glass of wine.

“Simply put, here I am inviting people to have a glass of wine and respond to their curiosity about Iran through my personal photo albums.”

Inspiration: “For me the process of getting inspired is a routine conscious or unconscious daily task. It is constant and it never stops. It comes to me from everywhere and everything lingering from the very abstract part of my mind to the outside random world around me. Maybe the better question is which one I pick as the starting point of an art project meanwhile being overwhelmed with too many of them.”

Impact on viewer: “It is actually the other way around. I respect the viewer and I admire their presence but I always seek their impact on me. I imagine viewers having the same opinion here, so I can conclude that the impact is mutual. In this case, the art is accommodating this reciprocity. It becomes a platform to interact, not to merely impact.”

Previous exhibits: “Nationally I have exhibited my works in galleries, such as Roman Susan Gallery in Chicago, The Center for Contemporary Art in New Jersey, Museum of Art at Washington State University and Eisentrager Howard Gallery at University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Also some of the galleries and museums I have shown my work at internationally are Auckland Photo Festival in Auckland, New Zealand and Saba Art and Culture Center in Tehran, Iran.”

What people should know: "The best way to see more of me and my works is to visit my website and follow me on my Instagram"


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