"Are you a virgin?" a slave girl was asked.
"I was," She replied, "until god relieved me."
About Rokni Haerizadeh
Rokni Haerizadeh creates mixed-media collages and paintings that both emphasize and criticize the inconsistencies in Iranian culture. His work centers on the fundamental tensions between traditional customs and gender roles and the rise of Western influence. Haerizadeh often appropriates media imagery, as in Who Sank All Night in a Submarine Light (2010), where a still image of a televised protest is printed repeatedly onto the canvas in a comment on government abuse and civil unrest. His eclectic influences include Iranian history, Freudian dream interpretation, traditional Persian literature, and pop culture.
Iranian, b. 1978, Tehran, Iran, based in Dubai
About Ramin Haerizadeh
Ramin Haerizadeh’s mixed-media collages and computer-manipulated imagery offer a critical perspective on the Iranian regime, satirically drawing on the country’s history and invoking traditional motifs of Persian tapestries, fabrics, and carvings. He is best known for “Men of Allah”, a series inspired by plays from Persia’s Qajar period, which often told stories from the life of Mohammad. Haerizadeh’s series depicts configurations of bearded men in patterned robes and heavy makeup, with bodies mutated into near-abstract, angular forms recalling Cubism, and contorted faces that are the artist’s own self-portrait. “In Iran everybody’s holy,” Ramin has said. “Ahmadinejad is holy, the Prophet is holy, the Shah, the ex-Queen…The first thing our community has to do is bring down all the icons.” In other work he has addressed the anger and frustrations of Iran’s Green Movement. He is the brother of the painter Rokni Haerizadeh; the two artists fled Iran in 2009 following the appearance of their work in an exhibition at the Saatchi gallery in London.
Iranian, b. 1975, Tehran, Iran, based in Dubai
About Hesam Rahmanian
b. 1980, United States, based in Dubai
About Iman Raad