Born in 1963 in Tehran to an Azerbaijani family, Khosrow Hassanzadeh studied painting at Mojtama-e-Honar University and Persian Literature at Azad University, both in Tehran. Hassanzadeh still lives and works in Tehran as an actor, journalist and visual artist. His work varies in media, though he is most recognized for his figurative images and for his use of silkscreen and mixed media on canvas. Drawing from the Persian calligraphic tradition, Hassanzadeh’s figures are often set against Farsi text or ornate, colourful patterns. Considered a ‘political’ artist, Hassanzadeh’s work deals with politically and socially sensitive topics in Iranian society. He takes his themes from the Iran-Iraq War (in which he fought), Islamic society, and Western perceptions of the Middle East, as well as less political subjects such as seated or reclining nudes. Through his work Hassanzadeh brings under scrutiny not only Islamic iconography and gender politics, but also the reductive stereotypes used by the West to brand Muslims as terrorists. His work featured in many exhibitions in Europe and the Middle East and is held by the British Museum, the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art, the World Bank and the Tropenmuseum, amongst many other private collections.