While we live in a world of diverse cultures and traditions, there is something immaterial and delicate that connects us together intimately. Humans live in distinct societies, and even within a society, inside different communities; yet our commonalities lie beneath the superficial. My work explores the diversity of various cultures and attempts to highlight the moments in which these commonalities reveal themselves.
Although based in Nashville in the past twenty years, I have traveled extensively in Argentina, Guatemala, Peru, Ecuador, Russia, Uzbekistan, Israel and the Palestinian territories, Spain, Morocco, and most recently Vietnam. Through the journeys, I have learned to appreciate the natural as well as cultural landscapes that shape, and are shaped by, the people who inhabit them. Photography was my way of jotting down personal notes and observations. My photographs are, therefore, expressions of my travel experiences and cultural encounters.
I was born and raised in Iran, and I moved to the United States following the revolution that swept my home country in 1979. At first, I found myself lacking a voice, unable to respond adequately to the geographical displacement and religious persecution this revolution has represented for me. During that time, I also had to face turmoil at home, experiencing first-hand the oppression of women that is endemic in certain segments of Iranian society. Finally in the mid-1980’s, soon after moving to Nashville, Tennessee, I discovered photography as an instrument through which I can digest and transform productively the political and personal tumult I had experienced.
When photographing, I do not alter the scenes to the advantage of a desired composition; rather, the scenes are represented as they appear, unmediated, to me. I also do not employ filters and artificial lights.