About Mohamad ali Vadood

Mohamadali Vadood, a life-long artist and also a designer who works in the field of wooden arts and his works include wooden sculpting, carving and marquatry. As an art instructor, he has always done his best to help his students think creatively. As an artist, reviving old forms of art from ancient Persia has been something that he highly regards with respect and enthusiasm, especially when it goes to old Iranian wood carving and its design.

Interview with Mohamad ali Vadood

Mohamad ali Vadood ("MAV") interviewed on Monday, 16 November.

Could you please tell us about your experience as a designer, artist, architect or creator?

MAV : I am actually a life-long artist and also a designer who works in the field of wooden arts and my works include wooden sculpting, carving and marquetry. As an art instructor, I have always done my best to help my students think creatively. As an artist, reviving old forms of art from ancient Persia has been something that I highly regard with respect and enthusiasm, especially when it goes to old Iranian wood carving and its design.

How did you become a designer?

MAV : My father used to work in industry. So, since I were a child, simple tools were kind of my playthings. My elder brother helped me take the first steps as a child, game-wise, and as for my mother, she would always support my ideas as a kid and take them serious. When I was a teenager, I would make my toys himself and have fun with my playmates who were usually fascinated by my invented toys. School used to offer me a mundane existence and I always thought I could make a better use of my time out of school. I was able to get my hands on a load of good wood, due to my geography, and as a result I got to like it. Through a television program, I realised there were carving workshops in another city. So, I traveled there and spent a year training with special tools and making inlay forms. On my return, I opened my own workshop and after a while, was invited to work for the Cultural Heritage Organization. At the Institute of Traditional Arts of the Iranian Cultural Heritage Organization, I had the opportunity to draw on the experiences of longtime professors of different fields of design and traditional arts. And then I was elected as the head of the Wood Arts Workshop at that institute. At the same time, due to my artistic and research activities, I was honoured to receive first-rate art from the Supreme Council of Culture of Iran. It was when I was invited to teach by the art universities. In all of these years, I believed I have in fact experienced a real on-the-job training process and these words are actually the record of the training I have been through.

What are your priorities, technique and style when designing?

MAV : I tend to have a naturalistic style in my design. I believe the foundation of everything is there in nature. The main feature and attitude of my design is to show a new horizon of ability and path to a harmony with pristine nature in order to achieve visual expression. I like hand tools more as I suppose they make us stronger and more skilled, and above all it is so much fun working with them. I use technology only when it is time to shorten a project.

Which emotions do you feel when designing?

MAV : At first, I get confused, then I get frustrated, and all of a sudden something springs to my mind. After struggling with the new idea, if I find the solution, I will rejoice, and if not, it starts again from the beginning until I get my hands on the answer.

What particular aspects of your background shaped you as a designer?

MAV : As I said, my family, regarding my understanding of tools and their use plus the enthusiasm, them my geography, speaking of wood and other material that came in handy later in my career, and finally the horizons that my early experiences in small workshops broadened to me.

What is your growth path? What are your future plans? What is your dream design project?

MAV : Well, I would like to tell you about my future perspective and suppose it can help you see my background as well. One of my most important plans for the future is to create an organisational structure for the wood arts where enthusiasts can meet their needs in education, research and production. My next long-term project is to design and expose a great question that can revolutionise human visual understanding, even though I have been searching for an answer for years and have not been able to find any. To that end, I have decided to ask the question and challenge others. My next dream is to create a forest. And to start, I have made up my mind to make anyone interested in working with my organisation plant a tree in a predetermined location.

What are your advices to designers who are at the beginning of their career?

MAV : The very first thing in my point of view on this matter is that no sophisticated idea pops into our mind at once. Of course every great idea is only a simple one at the beginning, and after a long shot, it becomes an incredible design. So, we should just give every idea a go without prejudging that as a come-to-nothing one. One more thing to think of is that every path, even if it doesn't work out in the end, brings us valuable experiences which may be the key to the success of our other paths in future. In fact, life is successful in whatever way we pave, but you just need to make belief in what you do. And finally, the more you ground others, the more you yourself will learn while teaching them, and the more ideas will flash through your mind.

You are truly successful as a designer, what do you suggest to fellow designers, artists and architects?

MAV : First of all, I should thank you for your kindness to call me a truly successful one. As for my suggestions, I would say a designer should have three parts of their being deeply conscious and in effective control, and somehow strengthen these three parts every day. These three are physical body, mind and spirit. It is best to discover your body through a physical activity such as a sport or a game and strengthen your nerve and muscle coordination, especially the coordination of the nerve and the muscles of eyes and hands. To train your mind, you can always raise challenges for yourself. For instance, the ability to teach others makes us always subject to questions of the mind and so it has to process and find answers. And as for strengthening and discovering spiritual skills, a designer can enjoy making attempts to improve the lives of others and set this up as a mission.

What is your day to day look like?

MAV : I habitually wake up before dawn and just in bed, reply to emails and Instagram messages and generally check things out. I routinely start off my days with a glass of warm water and taking a shower. Eating an apple a day, I walk to work, and there I have my breakfast. I work on my projects and see how personal workshop and also the institute's affairs are going in the morning. I have lunch at about 1 p.m and finish work at about 6 p.m. Getting back home, I take shower, make some plans and write some schedules, read in my field of work, have dinner and watch a film. Finally, before going to bed, I drink another glass of warm water and usually read a story to my interest in bed. And at about 11 p.m just drop off.

How do you keep up with latest design trends? To what extent do design trends matter?

MAV : Through the web, via Instagram and visiting designers' personal pages or websites.

How do you know if a product or project is well designed? How do you define good design?

MAV : Any idea or design can be good when it comes to balancing these three: concept, application, and visual beauty.

How do you decide if your design is ready?

MAV : I do the same thing on my own works. If I could see the decent harmony between these three aspects in my work, and it can fulfill my image of the design then I find it ready. There is always this desire to improve though.

What is your biggest design work?

MAV : orest Heart is the design he has nominated for the A Design Award in 2020. This work is the result of a great discovery in designing. This work shows we can see the nature better, think more of what we see and create links between ourselves and our nature. Along with doing a beautiful design, this is a lifestyle, and so it is my favourite design. There are moments he lives with it, and in these moments he neither wants to be overpowered by nature nor want to overcome it, but he wants to be in harmony with nature.

Who is your favourite designer?

MAV : Michelangelo

Would you tell us a bit about your lifestyle and culture?

MAV : I live in Iran and here we speak the language of poetry, walk on carpets with cosmic motifs and dwell in cities that are thousands of years old. I do my best to keep up with the thinking and cultural heritage of my country and wish my country and its history will always be one of the honours of human civilization.

Would you tell us more about your work culture and business philosophy?

MAV : I believe that my being has got three shapes, my physical body, my mind and my spirit. Art is the absolute fashion in which these three meet so that they can unite and become dynamically active. while my hands work in harmony with my eyes and anything observed and analysed by my mind contributes to whatever it seeks, my spirit gets filled with passion for life, these all occure in the realm of arts.

What are your philanthropic contributions to society as a designer, artist and architect?

MAV : There are a couple charities that I try to keep in touch, but thinking of something of my own, there is a society that we are trying to define and the moment and has already achieved to a good existence and is making its own way. We, in our team, want to create a wood artists society with our friend who have physical disabilities but have strong arms and have the chances to make great influences.

What positive experiences you had when you attend the A’ Design Award?

MAV : I Would like to thank the founder of A Design Award and Competition for creating this equal opportunity for all the people of the world. It is very valuable that a team dedicate their time to this great service, thank you and all your colleagues and wish you all the best.

Mohamad ali Vadood Profile

The Bird from Paradise Wooden Sculpture

The Bird from Paradise Wooden Sculpture design by Mohamad ali Vadood

Forest Heart Wood Picture

Forest Heart Wood Picture design by Mohamad ali Vadood

One Thousand and One Nights Vessel

One Thousand and One Nights Vessel design by Mohamad ali Vadood


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