Money on Wall

Statement for Behnam Kamrani’s exhibition at Aun Gallery, 24 Sep. to 17 Oct. 2010.

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Asareh Akasheh

Statement for Asareh Akasheh’s painting exhibition at Mohsen Gallery, 23-28 July 2010.

Not Complying with the Fortunate’s Code of Conduct

Statement for Alireza Fani‘s works at Khak Gallery, published in Levantine Review, 31 Aug. 2010

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The Dada Disgust: A Medical Profile*

Published in Daily Star, Lebanon,  29 Aug. 2009, under the title ‘Physical Injury Within the Body Politic

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How Moghul Was Rembrandt?

(A Critique On A Global Laboratory of Infinite Multiplicities)*

Published in Third Text, 1475-5297, Volume 24, Issue 4, 2010, Pages 501 – 504

(The following is just part of the printed article.)

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Do We Need Culture?

I confess, I have written the following with the intention of being admired for my wit. Showing some respect in return for its articulation in a format most prone to underestimation is the price to be paid for a clear philosophical text!

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Guiding Design Patterns in Qajarid Architecture and Decoration

IQSA 2009 Conference: Architecture in Qajar Persia

IQSA and Institut für Iranistik

Vienna, Austria, 4-5 June


The paper provides proof for Gulru Nacipoglu’s hypotheses and findings in her book, The Topkapi Scroll: Geometry and Ornament in Islamic Architecture (1995). It takes up its claim that architectural plans and decorations in Iran (at least from the Safavid period onwards) followed preconceived design patterns. While Necipoglu pursues this argument on the basis of the analysis of architectural scrolls, the article approaches the question from the other side, showing how systematics of such scrolls can be found in actual buildings of the time. The cases studied are from the second half of the nineteenth century in Shiraz and Isfahan.

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Metaphysics of Absence: Martyr’s Museums in Iran

University of London
Goldsmiths College
Department of Visual Cultures
BA Course Museums and Galleries: Framing Art
2 Dec 2008

For my talk today, I have chosen to present a ‘different’ museum to you. Yet, I invite you, as we progress, to go beyond the sublimity of the terror it provokes or the extreme banality of its making and to look at the intended function for which it was built. It was meant to convey to you, as well as to the native viewers, what fails to reach you through other channels. You might recognize the mode of its representation as a desperate attempt to balk at representation per se.

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Politics of Opening: Translation as Authorship

(Urbanism and Multi-Layered Translation)

Published in: Pages Magazine, No. 7,  The Hage, The Netherlands, March 2009, pp. 72-85.

‘… Let us let be or let us allow to be seen what does without the open embouchure.’

—Jacques Derrida, Truth in Painting


A European friend once wrote to me, ‘I wish your country will open up one day.’ What a strange word, I thought: ‘Open up!’ Is it not what the policeman shouts at the door? Open up to what or who? To modernization? To global market? To capitalism? To penetration? Or less aggressively, to adaptation? Or ultimately to translation? Or is it just opening up a space, some sort of a void?

What are the dangers of opening up? What are the politics of opening up or of translation as such?

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Public Spaces and the Politics of State Experience in Iranian Cities

International Conference: The Contemporary Oriental City from a Linguistic, Literary and Cultural Perspective

Dept. of Interdisciplinary Eurasiatic Research of the Institute of Oriental Philology Jagiellonian University

Krakow, Poland

21 May 2009

1. Oriental City: A Post-Colonial Approach

A conference on Oriental city in an occidental city is the inescapable context of the paper I shall be presenting to you. Since it reads my text, I might be allowed to read the context. So I start with the term ‘oriental’.

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Time for Your Pill

In this performance, female students of Honar University offered free traditional food to male customers under one condition: they should listen to feminist texts read aloud to them.

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Dada Matinée

Dada Matinée was a group performance
with my students at Laleh Park, Tehran. Together with Hadi Nasiri, we succeeded in convincing Honar University to incorporate performance into their curriculum for one semester.
The event, a final term project, focused on performative writing and the ways in which it can be performed. Each student or group of students developed their own idea of composing and interacting with texts in a performative manner.
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Art Intervention at Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art


In the poem, a scene is described in which a woman is holding a glass of destillated mint in her hands. The bottle in the installation also contains destillated mint.

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Wine Bottle

A poem by Arthur Rimbaud on one side and a poem by Khayyam in praise of mystical intoxication on the other. Each line of peotry is meant to be read with a sip of wine.

Text Installation at Ave Gallery

Most of the objects in this section which I call reading machines were part of an interactive installation exhibited at Ave Gallery, Tehran, 2007.

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Once the surface of the plexi-glass is moistened, the text underneath becomes readable. It reads: He remembers for a second, then forgets. As water evaporates, the text becomes unreadable once again. The machine too, eventually forgets what it had expressed.


The machine illustrates an encounter between Rumi and Shams and their mutual attraction reflected in Rumi’s poetry.


A poem by Sa’di written on anti-depression tablets.