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Creating mind-bending work in painting, sculpture, choreography, and creative new media, artist ZEEHAN WAZED (b. Benghazi, Libya, 1991) explores the relationship between physical and psychological reality today.  

Wazed immigrated to the United States with his family in 1994 and was raised in Jamaica, Queens. A gifted student, he was accepted to Stuyvesant Highschool in Manhattan. With this new chapter in his life came a new commute. Taking the subway to and from school each day, he received a world-class education in the vibrant underground culture of New York.  Between station platforms and train cars Wazed discovered the flourishing subterranean universe of graffiti and street performance.  

He began to occupy his daily subway rides by filling countless notebooks with wild-style drawings, developing his aesthetic dexterity against the anarchy of the city’s public transit.  By night, he trained himself as a dancer (via YouTube), eventually developing the courage to jump into a cipher (breakdancing battle) in Union Square. Before even graduating high school, Wazed had quickly become a recognized as a freestyle hip hop dancer, a  graffiti artist and a delinquent-darling among NYC’s radical underground community. 

A Macaulay Honoree, Wazed went on to attended Baruch College where - like artist James Turrell - he earned a degree in Perceptual Psychology. At Baruch, he continued to paint and perform competitively in dance battles throughout the city, pursuing his fascination with concepts of momentum and relativity both in and outside the classroom. But when his graffiti career became a threat to his immigration status, the artist turned to canvas for the first time. As he studied the intricacies of visual processing and cognitive function in his academic life, Wazed developed an art practice which invokes our psychological impulse to seek common ground with anything and everything we perceive through our senses. 

Functioning like an inkblot test, Wazed’s work sparks the viewer’s imagination with an image, design, or movement which at first, appears random and abstract. Much like finding familiar figures in the shapes of clouds or constellations, within seconds of interacting with his paintings, viewers begin to perceive recognizable forms within the frame. However, unlike the accidental inkblot or casual cloud, the artist’s imagination-inspiring images brim with personal references to their creator. An artistic gesture which aims to relate our experiences to his own, Wazed’s coded approach activates the mind’s natural tendency to seek out patterns and personal connections everywhere we look. In an ever-polarizing world, his multidisciplinary practice demonstrates the power of basic human interaction to break down barriers, bringing us closer to one another, compassion and with any luck, peace.  

Reality Show marks the Wazed’s second major solo exhibition with ABXY Gallery. His work has been featured in publications such as Vice and Hypebeast. He has performed with internationally esteemed modern dance companies including Martha Graham and in Broadway productions like Illuminate. Supported by SAYA as a student, the artist is now actively involved with the philanthropy. 

Wazed has more recently expanded his work beyond the walls of a gallery in painting some of the largest public murals in New York City. Having grown up in Queens, he's made it his mission to beautify his native borough. Wazed has been commissioned by Kaufman Studios to paint 200 ft long mural in Astoria as well as block long murals in Long Island City. He has painted a permanent mural for the US Open for the Arthur Ashe Stadium, sponsored by Heineken. Wazed is also commissioned by Silverstein Properties to paint large immersive murals, spanning as large as 4200 sq feet in the WTC Oculus. His studio is currently situated at 3 World Trade Center on the 71 floor, which not only provides him ample space to work large and host collectors but also find inspiration in the amazing view of the city which he has been transforming into his own gallery. 


b. 1991, Benghazi, Libya. Bangladeshi-American lives and works in New York. 


Levis 501 Collaboration I Painted one offs as well as designed reproducible designs for 501 jeans for Levis for AAPI month
A City in Motion I 700 foot long augmented mural installation curated by Artbridge, sponsored by Durst
A Memory of Bangladesh I Mural dedicated to Bangladesh at Diversity Plaza Jackson Heights, sponsored by Taptap Send
Early Bird Gets the Worm I Mural for Hour Children's community center in LIC curated by Extra Butter

US Open Arthur Ashe Stadium I Permanent mural at the iconic stadium sponsored Heineken
WTC Oculus I 4200 square foot immersive mural installation sponsored by Silverstein Properties

Welcome to Astoria  I 2000 square foot augmented mural installation sponsored by Kaufman Studios

Really From I Group Exhibition I NYC Culture Club I New York City

Reality Show I Solo Exhibition I ABXY Gallery I Manhattan, New York
ABXY Beach I Group Exhibition I Haven Montauk I Montauk, New York
Neuberger Berman Celebrates Black History Month I Group Exhibition I Neuberger Berman Global Headquarters I Manhattan, New York
ULTRA VIOLET I EENY Annual Benefit Auction I Anderson Contemporary I Manhattan, New York
Filling in the Blanks Benefit Auction I Glen Arbor Golf Club I Bedford, New York 

Momentum I Solo Exhibition I ABXY Gallery I New York City
Filling in the Blanks Benefit Auction I Glen Arbor Golf Club I Bedford, New York
Salon de Printemps I Group Exhibition I Fabio Scalia I SoHo, New York
SAYA Annual Benefit Auction I Pier Sixty, Chelsea Piers I Manhattan, New York 

NOW WE HERE I Group Exhibition I ABXY Gallery I Lower East Side, New York City Art In Motion I Group Exhibition I Monticello Motor Club I Monticello, New York
Filling in the Blanks Benefit Auction I Glen Arbor Golf Club I Bedford, New York
SAYA Annual Benefit Auction I Pier Sixty, Chelsea Piers I Manhattan, New York 

Make Waves I Group Exhibition I Lower East Side, New York City
SAYA Annual Benefit Auction I Pier Sixty, Chelsea Piers I Manhattan, New York

Winter Show I Group Exhibition I Smith Haven Gallery I Long Island, New York 


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