Hossein Edalatkhah, (b. 1979) is a trailblazing New York based Iranian/American artist and the first openly gay artist to live and exhibit in Iran starting in late 90’s. His revolutionary gay rights activism through his art led to his exile in 2010, and he continues to push boundaries by using his art to advocate for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. His work often explores themes of identity, gender, and sexuality, and he has been recognized as a pioneer in the movement for LGBTQ+ rights in Iran. Edalatkhah has challenged traditional Iranian cultural norms and opened up important conversations about acceptance, diversity, and equality. Exploring gender through organic/biomorphic abstraction, he depicts traditional Persian symbols, materials, and figures that often melt into each other in phallic forms. These symbolize the cultural and political “erection“ Edalatkhah is concerned with. His work has received international acclaim and has been exhibited in galleries and important art fairs around the world.