Mapping Discrimination and Artistic freedom
Mana Mira, as a partner from Iran, chose the topic “Discrimination” and involved several artists in the project.
There is no chain or lock
Why are we all in bondage?
"As an art teacher and artist, I have been trying for years to create beauty both as an artistic act and as a method to create beautiful social environments. I am a follower of those thinkers and artists who looks at art not merely as a hobby but as an attitude toward life and as a lifestyle.
But on the basis of what I have experienced so far, those who think in this way live in a silent nonreflecting world, a world in which they are neither seen, nor heard or understood.
These experiences made me think about the reasons why artistic works are left unnoticed and uncomprehended. Moreover, in today societies, what obstacles are we faced with and what are those chains and lucks that have bound us?
The main reason which is usually propagated by media, general psychology books, etc. is individual’s incompetence and incapability.
Social and political systems prefer not to be criticized for their deficiencies and instead to put the burden of problems on the shoulder of members of society.
Surly the barriers on the way of an individual’s development, collective awareness and artistic creation cannot be restricted to individuals’ incompetence.To understand this contract better, I have made the main issue the subject of an artistic project.
I consulted with some artists and activists in the field of culture and asked them to share their experiences in their own ways, and consequently a collection of paintings, illustrations and some filmed interviews were produced. Prior to this consultation, I always thought that the main problem was rooted in psychological taboos, self-censorship, spreading rumors about artists and seclusion of men of thoughts and ideas by society …
But now …
I believe that all these problems and barriers can be encapsulated in one word and that is “discrimination”. Discrimination acts as an invisible chain which is ever-present and manifests itself in different shapes.
I want to share with you all these artistic expressions and hear about those barriers with which you are faced in a different culture.
We may surmount these barriers by making seen all the invisible chains.
I wish one day all artists can create freely and be seen since being means becoming understood."