From Sharne Wolff…
It’s that time of year again when Sydney goes Head On for the annual festival of Australian and international photography. The concept for the MLS027 exhibition came about when Mils Gallery Director, Adriano Roselli visited Tehran earlier in the year and met the Director of the Iranian capital’s Silk Road Gallery, Anahita Ghabaian. Hosted by both Galleries and curated by Ghabaian, the work of three contemporary photographers – Jalal Sepehr, Tahmineh Monzavi and Behnam Sadighi is on show. The idea is to “offer unique perspectives on life in Iran, while attempting to avoid stereotypical portrayals of the Middle East”.
Sepehr is a self-taught photographer who’s been working in the medium for more than two decades. Knot (pictured) is the latest in his series of ‘Persian rug’ photographs. A symmetrical image of the red carpets rolled out to welcome a large plane simultaneously embodies meetings of all kinds – tradition and technology, east and west, unhurried pace and speed.
A couple of years ago young female artist Monzavi was arrested by Iranian authorities and later released without charge. Reportedly the arrest was due to her art, which criticised the role of women in Iranian society. Here black and white documentary style images of bridal gowns in crumbling buildings are equally unsettling for those in Iran as well as outsiders while Sadighi, a teacher at Tehran’s Professional Photography School, explores the Iranian landscape and contemporary social issues in his series entitled Holidays.
Until May 31
Mils Gallery, Surry Hills
Pic: Jalal SepehrKnot (2011)40 x 60 cm. Courtesy the artist and Silk Road Gallery, Tehran.