Through March 4, the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa is featuring the Canadian premiere of the She Who Tells a Story: Women Photographers From Iran and the Arab World. This group show features the work of twelve female photographers: Jananne Al-Ani, Boushra Almutawakel, Gohar Dashti, Rana El Nemr, Lalla Essaydi, Shadi Ghadirian, Tanya Habjouqa, Rula Halawani, Nermine Hammam, Rania Matar, Shirin Neshat and Newsha Tavakolian. The collection of more than 85 images about life in the Middle East is subdivided into the themes of Deconstructing Orientalism, New Documentary and Constructing Identity.
On Thursday, February 22 at 7:30 p.m., there will be a talk with Dr. Joanne Stober, a historian at the War Museum, and photographer Gohar Dashti, one of the exhibited artists. The museum explains, “The discussion will focus on the artistic practice of photography to represent tradition and changing perceptions of Middle Eastern identity. It will be an in-depth discussion exploring the challenges that exist for photographic artists from the Middle East today—including the display of their work in the ‘Western world’; the tension between the desire to show contemporary perspectives and the pressure that may exist to represent their home culture; as well as the way politics play into the creative work of artists in the Middle East.” Tickets are $10 ($7 seniors/students/members) and are available online here.
Gohar Dashti received her M.A. in Photography from the College of Fine Arts at the University of Tehran in 2005. She continues to live and work in Tehran, and has developed a practice that examines social issues and explores history and culture in modern Middle Eastern society.
Dr. Joanne Stober is Historian of War and Visual Culture at the Canadian War Museum. She is a photography and film historian and is an Adjunct professor at Carleton University’s School for Studies in Art and Culture. Her doctorate is in Communications and Media Studies from Concordia University in Montréal. Dr. Stober curated She Who Tells A Story for the War Museum.