My Beautiful Iranian Childhood

"My Beautiful Iranian Childhood"
Mixed Media on Canvas
2011

This series of paintings entitled 'My beautiful Iranian childhood’ comprises a series of mixed media and photo collage on canvas. The inspiration for this collection is based on the disparity between the lifestyle of a typical middle class family in Tehran and the religious-political atmosphere of Iran during the 1980’s after the Islamic revolution. The works include my family photographs pitched against imagery of the post revolution period - including the prevalence of religious ceremonies and symbolism of the war. During the 8 years of the Iran-Iraq war and, the promotion of the new post revolution era, the majority of middle class Iranian families maintained concealed lifestyles with moments of joy in parallel to the ongoing war and a revolution. In contrast to the global perception of Iranians after the Islamic revolution, my generation's childhood had some happy moments too.

Parisa Aminolahi

"My Beautiful Iranian Childhood" was on exhibition from 14 April until 25 June 2011 at Brunei Gallery, SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies), London






"Hejleh"
2011

Mixed Media، Sequin Embroidery and Collage on Canvas

100 x 80 cm

Picture of the painter and her sister standing beside a Hejleh. The script consists of some streets in Tehran named after martyrs of the Iran-Iraq war. 
*A Hejleh is a booth made with crystals and lights in commemoration of a martyr. It symbolises the wedding chamber (Hejleh) of a departed unmarried youth and has its origins in the wedding of Imam Hossein’s son, at the time of war in Karbala, who became martyred. The Hejleh became customary during the Iran and Iraq war in memory of the martyrs of that war. This was a common sight during the painter’s childhood in Iran.

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"20 Million Man Army"

2009

Mixed Media and Collage on Canvas
80 x 120 cm

Portraying the flag of the Islamic Republic of Iran, incorporating Iranian soldiers and some female supporters of the revolution, a photograph of the painter’s childhood among her friends and a famous motto of the eight years Iran-Iraq war which was written all over the walls of her school: ''War, war till victory'', as well as a repetition of the famous phrase of Ayatollah Khomeini to motivate the youth to participate in the war: ''20 million man army''.


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"Arbaeen"

2009

Mixed Media and Collage on Canvas
100 x 80 cm

Portraying photographs of the painter’s family gathering, Alam (an emblem of a Shiite ritual mourning ceremony during Arbaeen; an important day in the Islamic holy month of Moharam) and a dirge poem in Farsi for this mourning.


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"Untitled"

2009

Mixed Media and Collage on Canvas
100 x 70 cm

Portraying a photograph of the painter’s family under a painting of former Iranian leader, Ayatollah Khomeini and his supporters in Jamaran; the home of Ayatollah Khomeini during his lifetime. The repeating text is a famous motto of that era: '' We are all your soldiers Khomeini, we are ready for your orders''.


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"Karbala 65"

2009

Mixed Media and Collage on Canvas
100 x 70 cm

A portrayal of a family gathering photograph which was taken in the Iranian year 1365, surrounded by a group of Iranian clerics. The repetitive text is a slogan of the Iran-Iraq war; ''Karbala, Karbala we are coming''.
(Karbala is a city in Iraq and is one of the holiest cities for Shia Muslims.)


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"Last Haft Sin"

2009

Mixed Media and Collage on Canvas
100 x 70 cm

This personal and nostalgic piece consists of a repetitive photograph of the painter’s family with a written personal memory of their last Iranian new year, Nowruz, together.
(Haft Sin or the seven 'S's is a traditional table setting of Nowruz, the traditional Iranian spring celebration and New Year. The haft seen table includes seven specific items, all starting with the Seen, S, in the Persian alphabet.)


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"Money Series"
















"100 Rial"
2011
Mixed media on canvas
30 x 40 cm





















"500 Rial"
2011
Mixed media on canvas
30 x 40 cm