Iranian-American artist Amir H. Fallah has created his largest public installation to date. “Portals” is a series of three stained glass panels created for The Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health‘s new headquarters in Koreatown. Each work subtly divides the terrace of the site, by allowing visitors an intimate space to contemplate each work with the surrounding environment.
The project took four years to complete and references the Victorian, Korean and Mid-Century Modern styles present throughout the city. “Each stained glass serves as a portal featuring an outline of a door at its center. The glass is solid but transparent, acting as a metaphor of how one can see past challenges and move forward towards positive change,” said Fallah in an interview with Hypebeast.
Amir H. Fallah, Portals, 2021, installation view, The Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health, Koreatown Headquarters, Los Angeles, CA. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Alan Shaffer.
Fallah‘s artwork carries his interests in graffiti and Western influences, while subconsciously reflecting the traditions of his native Iran. His subversive approach to portraiture presents figures that carry their story and traits but done so in a way that removes the physical facial appearances we attribute to portraits. Born in Tehran and raised in Virginia, the Los Angeles-based artist has exhibited across the U.S., along with works in Tokyo, Greece, Spain, and Germany.
The DMH was founded in 1978 and provides a variety of services, which include case management, crisis intervention, medication support, peer support, and other rehabilitative services.