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Allegiance with Wakefulness

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Cindy Mitchell

on 29 April 2015

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Transcript of Allegiance with Wakefulness

Allegiance with Wakefulness
Shirin Neshat

Allegiance with Wakefulness
Artist: Neshat
Offset print
Late 20th - Early 21st century
Visual elements that are reminiscent of a period of Iranian history marked by war.
Inspired by the repression of Muslim women and the compulsion to wear the veil.
Shirin Neshat
Born 1957 in Qazvin, Iran
She attended a Catholic boarding school in Tehran
She left her home to study art in the United States when she was 17
Graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with an MFA in 1982
In 1990, she returned home to find it unrecognizable
Explores the political and social conditions of Iranian and Muslim life
Focusing on women and feminist issues
Shirin Neshat
Lives and works in New York City
produces films, installations, and photographs
Often posed for her own photographs
Exhibited at
the Venice Biennale
the Istanbul and Johannesburg Biennials
the Art Institute of Chicago
the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York
the Tate Gallery in London
Took part in the "Logic of the Birds" five times over a three year span.
Took part in numerous group and solo exhibitions since 1992
Neshat has received about 17 different awards and grants
Cultural shift from modernization and progress to a regressive movement backwards, to an Islamic past = new image of the Iranian Muslim woman.
Re imbued with violence and danger, referring to a culture that is both geographically and ethically distant.
Ambiguity about how and who is holding the weapon.
"From the beginning I made a decision that this work was not going to be about me or my opinions on the subject, and that my position was going to be no position." -Neshat
Poem by Tahereh Saffarzadeh
by: Cindy Mitchell
O, you martyr
hold my hands
with your hands
cut from earthly means, Hold my hands,
I am your poet,
with an inflicted body,
I’ve come to be with you
and on the promised day,
we shall rise again.
O Guard in the heart of night’s cold
you watch as if from outside
the house of your own body
with tired eyelids
a night nurse
so that the wounded city can rest
from the plunder of death.
Your wakefulness comes from earnest faith, your sincerity and Al-Asr.
Stories of your martyrdom
like martyrdom of the people
remain unheard
they have no voice, no image, no date,
they are unannounced.
O light of the eyes
O good
O my brother
O watchful one
as your bullets in the air
break my sleep,
as if by reflex, I pray for you,
guardian of the liberating Revolution
O lonely hero,
watching against the nightly enemy
let God safeguard you from calamity.
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