Winners and LosersOver the past three years, the concept of “winner” and “loser” has become more interesting to me.
I have found that both athletics and the art-world are similar because there are winners and losers in both professions. Throughout my life, I have always seen myself as a fighter, as a person who refuses to quit or to stop regardless of the circumstances. With this ideology in mind, I see a parallel in both sports and arts: An athlete is supposed to keep playing as hard as possible regardless of the games’ score and an artist is expected to continue working despite the critical reception of their exhibitions.
As a member of the “Green Group Movement”, a political movement that arose after the 2009 Iranian presidential election and demanded the removal of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from office, I have an intimate relationship with the wining, losing, and the necessity to keep pushing forward. The Green Group Movement protests were major events in Iran’s political history and observers claim that these protests were the largest since the Iranian Revolution of 1978-1979.1 As mentioned earlier, the election of President Ahmadinejad signified a cultural shift that championed religious norms that subjugated women and other reforms. I, in good conscience, could no longer stay in Iran. Therefore, with just a suitcase and few belongings, I left my country to pursue my education and escape the persecution within Iran. I was born and raised in Iran and have spent 25 of my 28 years in the Middle East. Growing up in the Middle East taught me how everything are related to politics – art is no exception. As I mentioned before, the political rules in Iran are against the human rights, especially women’s right.
For example, women need their husband or father’s permission to leave the country and it is against the idea of being an artist, which means representing your work worldwide and have a chance to make a connection with art world. In addition, based on a written document the number of the Iranian women who have a master degree or Ph.D. are more than men, but outside of academic area and in a real art world, they are under the magnifier and censorship razor more than men in Iran. One of the results of these pressures is that we do not have enough active female performance artist in Iran, due to all the rules for hijab, attitude, and behavior, making it impossible to have a powerful impact and performance. 1 Peter, Rothberg. “Protest in Iran.
” The Nation. February 4, 2010. Accessed Sept.
& oct. 2017. https://www.thenation.com/article/protests-iran/.