Abbas Akhavan covers site-specific ephemeral installations, drawing, video, sculpture and performance. He is influenced by the specificity of the sites where he works such as the architectures housing them, the economies surrounding them, and the people frequenting them. The domestic sphere, a forked space between hospitality and hostility as he describes it, is an ongoing area of study in his practice. More recent works emphasize spaces and species just outside the home including the garden, the backyard and other domesticated landscapes.
His work featured in solo and group exhibitions around the world. Solo exhibitions include "Curtain Call, Variations on a Folly” at London’s Chisenhale Gallery (2021); "Script for an Island, Fogo Island Arts" on Canada's Fogo Island (2019) and “Cast for a Folly” at San Francisco’s Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts (2019). Just last year, he featured in group exhibitions including “Where We Go It Shall Be, Walk & Talk” in Portugal’s Sao Miguel (2021); “Inventing Nature: Pflanzen in der Kunst, Staatliche Kunsthalle Karlsruhe” in Germany’s Karlsruhe (2021) and “Once Upon a Time Inconceivable” in Istanbul’s Protocinema. Alongside exhibitions, his work is in public and private collections around the world including Dubai's Jameel Arts Centre, New York City’s Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation and Canada’s University of British Columbia.
Abbas also received numerous awards with the most recent including 2017’s Toronto Arts Council Mid-Career Grant, 2016’s Fellbach Triennial Award and 2015’s Sobey Art Award.