Sous le ciel de Shiraz

November 24 to December 15, 2021



In this project Alireza Shojaian has borrowed the characters of Sohrab and Shaban from the paintings of Hossein Qollar-Aghasi (1902 - 1966), to narrate a contemporary story. Alireza has turned the battle between these two national characters into a romantic moment on the front of the car, which takes place in a Persian garden under the starry sky of Shiraz, a common theme in many Persian miniatures.

On the two sides we have the scene of their death as the results of their forbidden love. On the left, the death scene of Sohrab referring to the article 234 of penal codes of the Islamic republic of Iran (possible death penalty for same sex relationship between men). On the right, the figure of Shaban referrers to the story of Alireza Fazeli, a 21 years old gay man, beheaded by the men of his family in 2021 in Ahwaz, Iran. Sadly, there are hundreds of similar stories that no one hears about.

The aim of this project is to cast light on the dilemma of LGBTQ+ rights in Iran. The topic which repeatedly has been denied by the government and neglected by the Iranian society both inside and outside of Iran.